Following a successful stint at Melbourne International Film Festival’s 2018 Critics Campus, and the success of both his FBi 94.5 FM segment ‘Movies Movies Movies’ with fellow alumnus Jack Atherton (Bachelor of Arts: Screen, 2017), and his ‘Cinema Girls’ podcast with Atherton and Lily Bennett (Bachelor of Arts: Screen, 2017), critic/filmmaker André Shannon (Bachelor of Arts: Screen 2017) recently participated in International Film Festival Rotterdam’s 2019 Young Film Critics talent development program.
Selected as one of six emerging film critics from around the globe, Shannon met with PR professionals, covered the festival independently , and was given the chance to be as prolific as possible. While in the Netherlands, he made his mark hosting an episode of IFFR Talks Podcast, speaking with English writer, musician and actor Elizabeth Sankey on her debut feature documentary Romantic Comedy, as well as introducing Son of Saul director László Nemes’ new feature Sunset to a packed audience.
On the IRRF blog, Shannon reflected on Chuck Smith’s documentary Barbara Rubin & the Exploding NY Underground and the words the recently departed Jonas Mekas, one of Rubin’s frequent collaborators, using them as a springboard for discussing the importance of young film critics in the art of cinema, encouraging them to “pursue their imagination over traditionally formal prose.”
Asked what he has learned from these recent experiences, André said, “Young alternative film critics are threatening the foundation of film culture, but we are a necessary evil. Our commitment to the imagination is radical and glorious.”
In his independent coverage of the festival, Shannon’s interview with Mexican filmmaker Carlos Reygadas was published in new Australian online film journal Rough Cut, of which he is a founding member. What set out as a discussion about Reygadas new film Nuestro Tiempo, their conversation instead develops into a loose and passionate manifesto for making great art and thinking on the meaning of the universe, in typical André Shannon style.
Before heading to Rotterdam, Shannon and partner-in-crime Atherton sat down with us to offer their top tips on making exciting and daring screen criticism for the AFTRS YouTube Channel. Movies Movies Movies continues to broadcast at 10.10am every Monday on FBi 94.5 FM, and is available as a podcast on iTunes, along with Cinema Girls. Shannon’s latest writings can be found on Rough Cut, where he is currently a staff writer.