We're up another thousand members since the last announcement, and we're gaining members at a faster rate. I didn't expect to hit 4k until roughly January.
So with that in mind, it's been quite a while since we ran a general demographic survey. Here's a link to a brand new survey that I hope you'll take the time to fill out. It's only 5 questions.
In addition, feel free to use this thread to talk about improvements you would like to see in /r/Fencing. Things you want to see more of, less of, etc.
A few weeks ago /u/Jabra posted the trailer for 'Malek Means Angel'. Yesterday, /u/toolofthedevil posted the trailer for 'The Fencing Champion'. Both premiered at the International Documentary Film Festival Amsterdam where I went to see them today. Since some of you might be interested, here are some of my thoughts:
Malek Means Angel (28 min): Rather disappointing :/ There really wasn't much to this. You get to see Malek hanging out with her best friend Yassmine, either outside or at their fencing club, being pretty regular 11 year old girls. You don't get to see her parents or family, only her and Yassmine and a little bit with her coach. The only thing that happens is one tournament where Malek loses early and is understandably upset (The coach, btw, is quick to blame the refâ€¦:/)
Between the lines, you get to know Yassmine is the better fencer of the two, but how that plays between them is not explored further. There's no narrator or pieces to camera, so it's hard to feel connected to Malek, or her story.
The whole thing felt really short, considering it's almost half an hour. I was left mostly wondering just why the film maker choose this particular subject.
The Fencing Champion (27 min): This one I found a lot more interesting. Despite being 1 min shorter than MmA, a lot more happens. You see Ruben at his club with his coach and at several tournaments (two international and one Danish National one, I think). Being used to documentary makers generally trying to gain sympathy for their subject, I was surprised that at the start Ruben comes across as, frankly, quite the annoying little shit. Which, granted, might not be a bad trait when you're trying to succeed at a high competitive level. The flip side to his, for lack of a better word, arrogance becomes clear quickly in his tantrums when he loses. The real interest comes from seeing him and his coach (who seems a super nice guy) trying to deal with the volatile emotions; from the devastation at loses (for which, btw, the ref gets blamed quickly too) to the kick of winning a bout where he comes back from behind.
Interspersed with all this, it follows Ruben's interactions with a girl from his club who travels to the same tournaments. Rather than being superfluous, I thought this was really nicely done, and showed a different emotional side to Ruben.
One thing that was missing for me (probably due to length) was that, like MmA, you never got to see the parents. I would be very interested to see how they coped with their child's emotional well being. That must be a difficult line to toe with a kid this talented.
[edited for stuff]