Last year the Bristol and Bath branch of the British Science Association launched a brand new competition, the Bristol Science Film Festival (BSFF), inviting members of the public to create short videos about their favourite topic in science.
Now, after four months of videos from budding scientists, documentary makers and bloggers the competition is closed and the judges are eagerly sitting down and watching hours of footage to pick a winner.
“We’re really excited for the inaugural year of the Bristol Science Film Festival,” says Elizabeth Pearson, BSFF committee member and volunteer for the BSA. “We have had dozens of great entries from the UK and beyond covering everything from the importance of lichen to urban astronomy.”
The winners of three prizes, an overall winner, a regional winner from the southwest, and winner chosen by us here at BBC Focus magazine*, will be announced at the culmination of British Science Week at the Cube Microplex, Bristol, on 20 March.
And without further ado, here is the shortlist:
Rachel Shannon – Every Breath You Take
Rachel is Bristol Physiological Science graduate and video blogger. This film shares one of her favourite physiological phenomenons. The Respiratory Sinus Arrhythmia might not spring to mind as a cool bodily reflex, but if you’ve ever been trying to sleep and been sure your heart rate was changing pace – this video will explain why you might not have been imagining things.
Grace Edmunds, Charlotte Spires, Will Foxall, Adam Garvey and Hal Hampson – Cancer, and the art of Cell Defence
In 2015 combination treatment with two immunotherapy drugs produced some of the most startling two-year survival rates ever seen in the history of cancer treatment. We explore the mechanism by which these drugs work. Taught by a young scientist to our curious reporter, witness the magic of science decoded before your very eyes.
Sam Duckerin – Soapbox Science Bristol
Meet the speakers from Soapbox Science’s 2015 Bristol event in Millennium Square. Hear about why these female scientists decided to get involved in this public outreach event and how they think events like these are helping to highlight and combat the gender imbalance that exists in academia across science, technology, engineering and maths.
Mary-Laine Friday and James Bowers – The A to Zee of Animal Mysteries
Ever wondered why cockroaches die on their backs? Or how whales and dolphins drink? Or even what shape wombat poo is? Well we bring you a collection of surprising, witty and often absurd answers to the most baffling, the most ridiculous and the downright strangest animal mysteries out there! Full of fun facts to tell your mates down the pub, with plenty of giggles along the way… We bring you: the A to Zee of Animal Mysteries!
Emma Salkeld, Hannah Conduit – New Year, New Me
The whole concept (which was thought up in January) is dancing around the regeneration of parts of our body, but using the wonderful New Years’ cliché that is New year, new me! we tried our best to film this over two nights, and use interesting ways to iterate our points (Hannah only let me cut her hair once, so we couldn’t reshoot the hair scene unfortunately). We both had a great time making it! And hope you enjoy it too.