As New York City 10 year-olds my girls have taken a huge range of after school classes. From sports to cooking, arts to performing, we’ve covered pretty much every venue on the Upper West Side. I’ve found that some classes are harder to do well than others, cooking for example is often nothing more than baking, often involving Pillsbury Crescent Rolls or assembling of ingredients rather than real cooking. And I won’t even discuss the disastrous swim class we took where they put kids back in the pool after another kid had thrown up in it. So, I was definitely skeptical of Take Two Film Academy, kid focused film program, since most of our experience has been a “film” class that consists of a non-film teacher making videos on iMovie and the kids merely actors in the teacher’s script or ideas. But, Take Two Academy seemed a lot more professional and worth a shot.
The first thing that impressed me about Take Two and their fabulous teachers was that they use real professional equipment. The cameras, boom mikes, and Final Cut Pro editing software challenged the students to make higher quality and richer movies. But what I really loved was how they focused on the process and on collaboration – two things that are essential to good filmmaking. The kids range in age from 8-15, not an easy group to get to work together, but they did. They broke down into smaller groups, but each took bigger or smaller roles within each group – from writing, to acting, from directing to editing. In just 5 days they produced 3 short films – each of them unique, interesting, and completely from their own voices. And, they were all really proud of each other, the teachers took a total backseat to the students at the final viewing.
Here’s what one of their students (and star KidzVuz Reviewer) has to say about Take Two Film Academy:
And here is sample of one of the films my girls made:
It’s not cheap – but classes of this quality rarely are in Manhattan. I highly recommend checking it out for your budding film maker, actor, writer or performer.
Disclosure: I received a discount on the one-week film class in exchange for a review. All opinions (and those of the kids) are unbiased and our own!