Filmbuilding Malden hosts public screening

On August 18, the Filmbuilding Malden project team hosted its first outdoor film screening at the beautiful Cotyemore Lea Park on Mountain Ave.

The program included a community engagement activity, to share a place in Malden that holds a special memory and the screening of five films with brief discussion.

Part of the purpose for the evening was to invite the public to learn more about the Filmbuilding Malden project and to experience one of the first films created by residents using the filmbuilding method. “A River Ran Through Here” was the film of focus for the evening, a six-minute film made four residents participating in the June Filmbuilding Blast. With its focus on the Malden River as metaphor for Malden’s evolution through time, it was natural to screen a few other locally made films related to the reclaiming of the river as a treasured part of our environment and a link to us all. The film descriptions are below.

Be a Role Model! Protect the Malden River (4 min), The youth of Malden collaborated with Urban Media Arts and Friends of the Malden River/Malden River Works over the spring and summer of 2021 to participate in documenting and cleaning up the land near the Malden River. With Karen Buck as their guide, these students have worked as stewards to clean up and educate the public about the environmental impact of waste in nature, giving a voice to this overlooked ecosystem. In this PSA video, three Malden Catholic Students document a river clean at River’s Edge in Medford. Learn how you can get involved!

Turnaround – Karen and the River (6 min), a Turnaround Film by Trillium Studios Film that highlights the drive of one Malden resident to take action and clean up, care for and restore the Malden River. Karen Buck’s example has inspired others to join her and has generated significant awareness and movement toward caring for this natural treasure that some never knew existed.

A River Ran Through Here (6 min) was created by four residents of Malden over a weekend “Filmbuilding Blast” in June. These novice filmmakers had never met nor created a film. With technical assistance from filmmaker Karen He and ongoing support from Kamila Rodrigues, Mavi Ruiz, Sophie Tran Luoung, Josh Perry, and Conrad Mitala produced a thoughtful reflection of the Malden  River: its history, future, and significance as a metaphor for Malden’s evolution. This film demonstrates the power of the filmbuilding process to create community and co-create a film that captures a meaningful and multilayered perspective of Malden as a place. This project was funded in part by the Malden Cultural Council.

Cascades of the Middlesex (4 min) is a delightful guided tour to the somewhat “hidden” cascades in the Middlesex Fells in Melrose-Malden. Join a family excursion and get inspired to visit and even draw this natural treasure.

A diverse range of people attended, including residents who had just moved in to Malden, long-standing residents, students, and lots of kids. Some families came early and brought a picnic. There were about 50 in all.

Conrad Mitala, Mavi Ruiz, Josh Perry, Sophie Tran-Luong

Four residents who worked together as filmbuilders to create a film over four days this past June shared their experience making the film with the crowd. Mavi Ruiz, Josh Perry, Conrad Mitala, and Sophie Tran Luong had never met nor created a film. They said the experience was wonderful. It allowed them to learn about Malden and each other. It forged friendship and strengthened their connection to Malden.

To learn more about Filmbuilding Malden and to consider becoming a filmbuilder for the coming fall workshop cycle, visit the Filmbuilding Malden page.

Special thanks to the City of Malden Recreation department and City Electrical department for supporting the event. We also thank the amazing Boston Audio for their tremendous service!