Chris Wright, webmaster and creator of Studentfilms.com, started the site in 1998 when a senior film student at Boston University’s College of Communication as a way to show off his creations as well as those of his friends. Since then Studentfilms has grown considerably, with a database of hundreds of films. The site serves mainly as an online community for student filmmakers to have their movies seen and evaluated, but it also offers forums for interactive discussions; articles in the form of updated blog entries; and even Studentfilms.com-related merchandise.
As can be imagined, the content on Studentfilms ranges wildly, from amateur to ready-for-the-big-time, from irreverent to deadly earnest—in other words, all the colors of the student filmmaking rainbow.
Thankfully Studentfilms organizes its material by new films, by genre (action, comedy, experimental, etc.), film school films, and popularity (most viewed and best reviewed) among other categories for easy reference and searchability. Whatever you’re interested in seeing—to scope out the competition or look for a likeminded talent—you’ll find it here: The Lifeguard is a good film for anybody who’s ever experienced a lazy, daydreaming summer; The Liars is a surreal live-action animation in the spirit of Jan Svankmajer; Isolation explores death and recovery in dramatic black and white.
The forums don’t gather dust—they’re continually thriving online communities that allow filmmakers to trade tips, advice on film schools, and calls for work and on set help. Less frequently updated or used are the articles, but should these be given at least a gander for basic lessons on Avid or character empathy via Norbit.