BFI Future Film Festival 2024 Presents: The Next Wave in Wales

Highlights from the BFI’s Future Film Festival evening at Chapter Arts in Cardiff, 17th February 2024.

tom betts at bfi future film festival

I had the pleasure of assisting a showing as part of the BFI Future Festival on Friday at Chapter Arts in Cardiff. Hosted by Tom Betts, it was a lovely evening showcasing talent from young filmmakers (16-25) across the country — the first half of the programme showed films developed under the several BFI initiatives run throughout the year, while the second half highlighted work to promote worthy causes around Cardiff.

All of the programme’s films are available from the BFI’s YouTube channel and here are my highlights from the films shown at Chapter.

All up There (Bonnie MacRae, 2022)

The absolute standout of the films shown was this story of endometriosis and medical misogyny. It has pace, humour, great visuals, and a statement to make about how women’s pain isn’t treated seriously.

Sækýr (Edith Morris, 2023)

I have a lovely soft spot for rustic monster costumes. It conjures memories of watching Power Rangers shows as a child and drives home an independent feel to any work it's used in. Sækýr pulls inspiration from Icelandic folklore and mixes wide-open landscapes with cardboard city destruction.

Deeper Still (Max Callaby, 2023)

This was adorable. Made almost entirely by himself over 12 weeks in his bedroom, this stop-motion animation is rich in friendship and a cosy portrayal of how everyone needs help to find a fulfilling life. I would watch shorts like this before almost any feature trip to the cinema.

Anna McGee’s Wild Ride (Ava Bounds, 2023)

Another film with pace: this one is lightning-quick. On the brink of leaving for university, one woman sees her life whisk by in front of her eyes in hilarious form. And that’s before a baby is ejected from a car window.

Award Winners

  • Best Animation: Radheya Jegatheva (Bird Drone)
  • Best Documentary: Minerva Navasca (Guardians)
  • Best Experimental Film: Kit Warner (Lucidity)
  • Best International Film: Justin Kaminuma (Dreams of Home)
  • International Special Mention: David Huang (Rock Springs)
  • Best Micro Short: Zeb Goriely (36,000 Words for Love)
  • Best Writer: Jack McLoughlin (Are You Okay?)
  • Best New Talent: Tiffany Whitney Chang (Stir)
  • Best Director: Bonnie MacRae (All Up There)
  • Best Film: Nathan Ginter (Best Film)