EIFF Student Critics Programme 2019 

We were delighted to welcome ten student critics to attend the festival from 19-25 June 2019. Our student critics were given full access to a range of screenings, receptions and events and received mentoring from professional film journalists, writing reviews and articles throughout their time at the festival. 

We were joined by students studying at institutions across Scotland and the rest of the UK, as well as two from Poland.

The 2019 EIFF Student Critics were:

Dalia Al-Dujaili, 20, University of Edinburgh

Daniel Mohr, 21, University of Aberdeen

Elizabeth Bowie, 19, University of St Andrews

Finegus Stockting, 21, University of Cardiff

Maeve Allen, 22, University College London

Maria Kamińska, 20, University of Warsaw

Oliver Thomas, 20, King’s College London

Rachel Baker, 22,  University of Glasgow

Rory Doherty, 21, University of Glasgow

Sara Kotwicki, 18, Warsaw Film School


In 2019 for the first time, we were thrilled to partner with The Skinny and publish a selection of the student critics' writing in the August edition of the magazine. Read our student critics reviews here.

Our aspiring film writers received daily mentor sessions from established industry professionals, who provided them with feedback on their writing and offered advice on how to develop their work and build a career in film criticism.

Our 2019 Student Critic Mentors were:

Amber Wilkinson (@Ninjaworrier and @EyeForFilm)

Amber Wilkinson is a journalist with more than 20 years experience. She is the co-founder and editorial director of UK-based website Eye For Film. Her byline has appeared in The Times, Daily Telegraph, Sydney Morning Herald and Filmmaker Magazine among others. She has run several FIPRESCI young critics' workshops and mentored young critics at EIFF in 2018. 

Fionnuala Halligan (@finnhalligan and @Screendaily)

Fionnuala Halligan is the reviews editor and Chief Film Critic for Screen International/Screendaily.com, where she also compiles the annual Stars of Tomorrow new talent issue, highlighting young UK and Irish actors, directors, writers and producers. She also programmes European cinema for the International Film Festival and Awards, Macao.

Nicholas Barber (@NicholasLBarber)

Nicholas Barber is a film critic for BBC Culture and The Economist. He also writes about the arts for The Guardian, Metro, The New York Times and The Wrap, among other publications, and he used to be one of The Independent on Sunday’s two film critics.


If you are interested in applying to our Student Critics programme in 2020, make sure you follow EIFF Youth on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram for updates and more information. Applications will open in April.

Supported by James and Morag Anderson