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International Children's Film Carnival 2016 offers fun-filled summer programmes (with photos)
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     Every July and August during the summer vacation, the International Children's Film Carnival (ICFC) gives Hong Kong families something special to look forward to. This year's carnival will showcase dozens of feature films, animations and short films from around the world, offering something for everyone.

     The ICFC 2016 is presented by the Film Programmes Office of the Leisure and Cultural Services Department with selected films to be shown from July 8 to August 14 at the Theatre of Hong Kong City Hall, the Cinema of the Hong Kong Film Archive, and the Lecture Halls of the Hong Kong Science Museum and the Hong Kong Space Museum. The ICFC is one of the highlights of the International Arts Carnival.

     This year's feature films include two lovely animations. In "Molly Monster" (2016), Molly goes on an adventure to find her parents who are away from home for egg hatching, so she can give her newborn sibling a gift. In "Raven the Little Rascal - The Big Race" (2015), Raven the Little Rascal crashes into a barn. To make up for his mistake, Raven decides to join a real car race so he can win the cash prize and buy some food for his family.

     The 6-year-old boy in "Villads" (2015) is very playful and constantly gets into trouble. He challenges school rules that he regards as unreasonable and is targeted by the teachers. "Help! I Shrunk My Teacher" (2015) is also set on a school campus, where Felix shrinks the moody principal down to a size of 15 centimetres. How can the principal resume her normal size?

     Children who love adventures should not miss "My Canadian Adventure íV The Quest for the Lost Gold" (2015), which tells the story of a group of little adventurers trying to find gold in Canada. On their way, they encounter the prospectors who want their gold, and they end up getting lost in the forest. In "Winnetou's Son" (2015), Max tries to learn cowboy skills to win the part of playing the son of native American hero Winnetou. The film won the Audience Award, Films for Children at the Warsaw Film Festival 2015.

     In "Little Gangster" (2015), Rik seeks to stop the bullies by creating a new image for his father as a mafia boss, while he is the little gangster. The film has won various prizes including the Michel Award at the Filmfest Hamburg 2015, and the Cinekid Lion Jury Award and Audience Award for Best Dutch Family Film at the Cinekid Festival 2015. In "JerryMaya's Detective Agency - Shadows of Valleby" (2014), teen detectives Jerry and Maya are tasked with protecting auction pieces, but the valuables still go missing. The duo seeks to discover the mastermind of the theft.

     Animals often playing leading roles in children's films. Based on a true story, "Oddball" (2015) tells the story of sheep dog Oddball and his master, who together rescue the Fairy Penguins from extinction. The film won third place under the Starboy Prize at the Oulu International Children's and Youth Film Festival 2015 and Best Performance by a Young Actor at the Film Critics Circle of Australia Awards 2015. "Birds of Passage" (2015) follows a duckling who mistakes wheelchair-bound Margaux for his mother. Believing that Margaux can't take care of the duckling, her parents decide to send it away. So Margaux and a friend leave home in secret to save the duckling. The film won prizes at numerous film festivals including the ECFA-Award at the European Children's Film Association 2016 and Grand Prize Feature at the New York International Children's Film Festival 2016.

     The "Youthful Encounters" section features two films reflecting the fact that people have different attitudes towards competition. "My Skinny Sister" (2015) tells the story of Katja, a popular young figure skater who is growing up under the stress of family expectations. In the course of preparing for an important competition, Katja develops an eating disorder due to the pressure. The film won Crystal Bear for the Best Film (Children's Jury) and Special Mention (International Jury), Generation KPlus, at the Berlin International Film Festival 2015 and other awards. In "Offline íV Are You Ready for the Next Level?" (2016), high school student and famous Internet warrior Jan is about to face his online adversaries, but he fails to get online on the eve of a big competition. On his journey to fight the hacker, Jan subsequently discovers the meaning of life.

     This year's "Film Tunnel" will screen the musical fantasy classic "Mary Poppins" (1964). Adapted from children's fiction writer PL Travers' novel series, this box-office hit is a combination of animated special effects and live action. It also became the most Oscar-nominated Disney film, with awards including Best Actress, Best Special Visual Effects and Best Original Song. The film follows Mary, who as a family's "nanny" handles the chores and takes care of the children using her magic powers. With Mary's help the parents eventually learn how precious love is, and the family lives happily once again.

     Experienced dubbing artists Pat Kwok and Kinson Lai will perform live Cantonese dubbing in "Raven the Little Rascal - The Big Race", "Villads" and "JerryMaya's Detective Agency - Shadows of Valleby", which have English subtitles, while the other films have Chinese and English subtitles.

     Seventeen animations and shorts from France, the United Kingdom, the United States, Russia, Indonesia, Japan and Hong Kong will be screened during the ICFC in the "World Animation & Shorts" section. Ken Kwan, a professional practitioner of children's drama, will host interactive activities in Cantonese during the intervals.

     Tickets priced at $60 will be available from tomorrow (May 13) at URBTIX (www.urbtix.hk). For credit card telephone bookings, please call 2111 5999. For programme enquiries, please call 2734 2900 or visit www.lcsd.gov.hk/fp/en_US/web/fpo/programmes/2016icfc/index.html.

Ends/Thursday, May 12, 2016
Issued at HKT 15:30

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