News Column

Showcase for young filmmakers Friday

October 2, 2013

YellowBrix

Oct. 02--Folsom High senior Colton Stock wouldn't give up any plot spoilers about his 101/2-minute film, "Sitter for Hire," which he described as a "a horror movie about a baby sitter who has her worst night."

Stock's "Sitter" as well as his 8-minute "The Poor Man's Heroes Journey" are scheduled to screen along with 38 other youth-made films Friday at the Tower of Youth's 17th Annual North American All Youth Film and Education Day, held at downtown's Crest Theatre.

The event showcases movies made by high school students from across the nation and Canada. Submissions range from 3 to 40 minutes in length and "should be as creative as possible without gratuitous violence, profanity, sanctioned tobacco or other substance abuse," according to organization, which works to empower youth and promote digital literacy as well as economic and community development.

Stock produced both entries with the help of the 10-member film club he created his junior year at Folsom High.

According to Tower of Youth CEO William Bronston, having two entries accepted to the event is rare. "This kid is going to be very successful at whatever he does," Bronston said of 17-year-old Stock.

Bronston should know. As the event's long-time organizer, he's helped bring Hollywood heavyweights to Sacramento to speak at past All Youth Film installments, including director Bryan Singer ("Usual Suspects," "X-Men") and Tom Sherak, former president of 20th Century Fox and the Motion Picture Academy of Arts and Sciences.

This year's industry speaker will be Oscar-nominated documentarian Rick Goldsmith ("The Most Dangerous Man in America: Daniel Ellsberg and the Pentagon Papers"). In addition, representatives from California media schools are scheduled to attend the event.

Stock said he hopes to be admitted to the film program at either the University of Southern California or the University of California, Los Angeles, and plans on submitting his films to other festivals.

"I just enjoyed being able to create something with my friends," Stock said of the experience.

Bear River High senior Justin Rypma, 17, will also get the chance to see his work on the big screen. Rypma's "Amplitude" is a documentary about a day in the life of a wakeboarder.

"I wanted to give it a different feel than wakeboarder movies I'd seen before," Rypma said. "I wanted to give it a ... creative and imaginative look."

As the director, editor and cinematographer, Rypma did most of the work on the film himself, shooting five wakeboarders over a three-month period. His 10-minute film required about 40 hours of editing, he said.

The most important thing he learned was "to be organized," he said.

The Bear River High senior said he's hoping to earn a degree in cinematography at Chapman University and pursue a career in sports media.

"I find that film is the best expression of your imagination," Rypma said. "You can create anything that you dream of and make your dreams a reality through film."

Bronston said that Rypma is "into dealing with awesome spectacle, human capacity and astounding imagery."

Rypma and Stock are two of nearly three dozen young filmmakers set to screen their movies at the Crest. Selections represent a variety of genres, including comedy, documentary, experimental animation and claymation and are judged by an all-youth jury.

"These are the prospects of the very best voices, the very best images in North America," Bronston said.

In addition to presenting their works, the young filmmakers are also given the opportunity to learn from one another on how to improve their films.

"These film festivals are magnets to attract, to organize, to educate, to transform our young people in our region," Bronston said. "I want the audience to be inspired. And I want the filmmakers to learn to inspire."

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(c)2013 The Sacramento Bee (Sacramento, Calif.)

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