The Argentine film critic and author Diego Lerer is a member of FIPRESCI who has served as a critics’ jury member at a great many festivals. Currently preparing his film debut Donde mueren los elefantes, he is chairing the New Directors jury at San Sebastián this year.
He thinks that film criticism is still important in that it can highlight certain films, such as those you can see at festivals that often lack the means to get launched properly, and he finds that judging films as a juror is exactly the same as watching them as a critic; what is different is the procedure you use to assess them since as a juror you need to rank them in order of preference. He also feels that it can be quite stimulating to watch work by young directors as their films are usually quite spontaneous, although this doesn’t mean that youth has anything to do with innovation. There are young directors who make old films and veterans who are mavericks.