British Universities Film & Video Council

moving image and sound, knowledge and access

Student Production Postgraduate Award

Facing the Mountain

University of Sheffield

Synopsis: Set in the sacred valley of Kedarnath in India’s lofty Garhwal Himalayas, the ethnographic film explores what it means to live through disaster in a rapidly changing natural and social environment. Through the words of survivors, local elders and new visitors, we are shown a portrait of a place, and a glimpse of the tremendous forces at work there – of nature, development and belief. The content was developed as part of the producer’s doctoral research into disaster risk and community resilience in changing high-mountain environments.

Jury Comments: Documenting a sacred valley in India’s Garhwal Himalayas, this film explores what it means to live through disaster in a rapidly changing natural and social environment. Judges described this film as broadcast standard, and praised its cinematography and excellent editing.

 

Vicdeo Holding Slide

Fay Presto: The Queen of Close Up

University of the Arts, London

Synopsis: A portrait documentary about the legendary Fay Presto, who would rather die on stage than quit performing. Her humour and brilliance has led her to perform for the Queen six times (as well as magic shows in celebrities’ homes), and recently, begun to work at The Box, one London’s trendiest night clubs. The documentary reflects on her everyday life as a magician and, at 70, as an older woman in the entertainment industry. It shows the struggle of earning a living as a performer, and, through her memories, gives us a glimpse into the more glamorous days of 1980s London.

Jury Comments: This documentary is a portrait of the legendary magician Fay Presto, who would rather die on stage than quit performing. The judges described this film as tightly constructed and beautifully framed, with music sympathetic to the visual narrative.

 

Vicdeo Holding Slide

The Head Doctor

University for the Creative Arts

Synopsis: The aim of my film is to offer a window into the little known world of traditional African medicine and its place in a rapidly modernising countryside.

Jury Comments: Judges praised the honest storytelling story, and excellent cinematography capturing the surrounding landscape.

 

Limpiadores

University College London

Website: limpiadoresdoc.com

Synopsis: Before professors and students arrive for their morning classes at some of London’s most prestigious universities, these are the people finishing work. After more than eight years of campaigning, the immigrant cleaners outsourced at the School of Oriental and African Studies (SOAS) in London continue to demand being brought in-house. Limpiadores charts the history of their and others’ campaigns – from winning the London Living Wage to the deportation of nine colleagues, and the day-to-day invisible labour of cleaners on our campus.

Jury Comments: A film created to raise awareness of the way in which most London universities treat their low-skilled worker, highlighting the campaigns organised by these workers against outsourcing. Judges described this film as a beautifully made documentary with good editing and well mixed sound, and praised the decision to rely on the testimony of the workers, which makes the piece so compelling.