The 75th Venice International Film Festival is organised by La Biennale di Venezia, and will take place at Venice Lido from August 29th to September 8th, 2018. The Festival is officially recognised by the FIAPF (International Federation of Film Producers Association).
The aim of the Festival is to raise awareness and promote international cinema in all its forms as art, entertainment and as an industry, in a spirit of freedom and dialogue. The Festival also organises retrospectives and tributes to major figures as a contribution towards a better understanding of the history of cinema.
Open City Documentary Festival is delighted to announce its eighth edition of the annual festival celebrating creative documentary and non-fiction filmmakers with a dynamic new programme for 2018. With 30 features and 48 shorts, 2 world premieres, 3 European premieres and 26 UK premieres across shorts and features from more than 30 countries, the festival will take place from the 4th – 9th September in a host of great venues across central London.
This year – through films, audio and immersive (VR/AR) projects, across screenings, special events, parties, panels, workshops and masterclasses – Open City Documentary Festival will be celebrating the art of non-fiction.
Marking the festivals’ Opening Night will be the UK Premiere of Baronesa (2017, Brazil, 71’), directed by Juliana Antunes and in partnership with MUBI. Her astonishing debut follows friends Andreia and Leid as they navigate the perilous reality of daily life in the favelas of Belo Horizonte. At first glance, their days seem calm and untroubled, but the threat of violence is never far away and Andreia dreams of moving to the safer neighbourhood of nearby Baronesa. Antunes spent five years in Belo Horizonte, working with a non-professional cast, to create a work of rare intimacy and authenticity which—despite its simple structure—emerges as a complex, multilayered and moving portrait of contemporary life in the favelas. Baronesaannounces an exciting new voice in Brazilian cinema.
The Closing Night will be the UK Premiere of The Swing (2018, Lebanon, 74’) directed by Cyril Aris. An assured, emotionally rich film about the lies a family tells to keep their patriarch happy and the unattended costs of their falsehood. After sixty years of marriage, Antoine and Vivi have lost their most beloved daughter; but no one has dared to tell the bedridden nonagenarian Antoine, lest his heart crack. A simple solution, though everyone else in this densely interconnected family has then to live the same lie, giving no expression to their grief. A deeply affecting, beautifully shot cinematic novella; like all the best stories The Swing is a simple tale, but one that never short-changes its viewers.
This year the festival hosts an outstanding Jury panel for each of its competitive Awards. For the OpenCity Award the following documentaries have been nominated: Baronesa, dir. Juliana Antunes (Brazil); Casanova Gene, dir. Luise Donschen (Germany); Flight of a Bullet, dir. Beata Bubenec (Russia); and The Swing, dir. Cyril Aris (Lebanon). The Jury will be chaired by esteemed director Sophie Fiennes(Grace Jones: Bloodlight, Bami), and features Beatrice Gibson, Nelly Ben Hayoun, May Adadol Ingawanij and Mehelli Modi.
For the Emerging International Filmmaker Award the following documentaries have been nominated: Angkar, dir. Neary Adeline Hay (France); Those Who Come, Will Hear, dir. Simon Plouffe (Canada); Home of the Resistance, dir. Ivan Ramljak (Croatia) and The Best Thing You Can Do With Your Life, dir. Zita Erffa (Germany, Mexico). The award will be Chaired by independent Dutch documentary programme cultural advisor and filmmaker Tessa Boerman (Zwart Belicht), Luciano Barisone, Cecile Emeke, Chiara Marañón and Tadhg O’Sullivan.
The Best UK Short Award supported by the British Council has nominated The Mess, dir. Dorothy Allen-Pickard (UK); Some of These Days, dir. Vincent Förster (UK, Germany); Absent Wound, dir. Maryam Tafakory (UK, Iran); Missed Call, dir. Victoria Mapplebeck (UK); Season of Goodbyes, dir. Philippa Ndisi-Herrmann (UK, Kenya); Plastic Man, dir. Yulia Kovanova (UK); Then a Hero Comes Along, dir. Marlon Rouse Tavares (UK); Landline, dir. Matet Houghton (UK). The Award is Chaired by Stephanie Spray, non-fiction filmmaker (Manakamana) and professor of Critical Media Practices at the University of Colorado Boulder along with jurors Laure Bonville, Amar Ediriwira, Julia Nottingham and Lynn Nwokorie.
The festival will hold selected retrospectives of two unique voices in non-fiction filmmaking: The innovative found footage documentarian Penny Lane and Japanese pioneer of ‘action documentary’, Kazuo Hara. Both filmmakers will be at the festival to present their work.
The festivals’ expansive special events programme includes a focus on the short form with programmes celebrating the Ethno-Fictions of Columbian filmmaker Laura Huertas Milan and the groundbreaking hybrid experiments of Polish maverick, Bogdan Dziworksi. The festival will also host launches of new projects from Radio Atlas and NANG Magazine, and a live Audio Visual performative lecture from speculative architecture think thank Tomorrow’s Thoughts Today.
For the first time the festival has invited artists to present films that have informed their own practice, with special selections from DJ and producer Nabihah Iqbal and filmmaker Marc Isaacs as well as short films chosen by a number of the filmmakers with new work at the festival, screening before their own features.
This year’s Industry Programme has more breadth of programmes and sessions than ever before covering everything from the business of documentary filmmaking, funding, marketing, distribution, production and data. Industry sessions will cover themes such as VR/AR, the challenges of biopic documentaries, the short form, ethics, memory, cinematography, sound, editing, architecture, the future of journalism and the self. The festival is honoured to welcome esteemed filmmakers to share their expert knowledge and experience, including: Tadhg O’Sullivan, Steven Eastwood, Elhum Shakerifar, Rebecca Day, Emma Davie, Edward Lawrenson, Simon Ball, Chloe White, Rose Palmer, Sierra Pettengill and David Charap.
The festival will also be hosting an Industry Bootcamp aimed at students and recent graduates. These sessions will be about preparing for the next steps in your career and getting ready to enter the industry. Each event is £5, or free with student accreditation.
Open City Documentary Festival is looking forward to hosting a number of exciting festival parties this year including the Opening and Closing Night Receptions at the Regent Street Cinema as well as the Nabihah Iqbal after-party at the ICA, where the DJ, Producer & NTS Radio presenter presents an evening of music inspired by 1972 documentary Winter Soldier, featuring protest songs and music from the anti-war movement from 1950-1975. Other various festival parties will be listed in the festival programme.
NEW ASIA & PACIFIC FILM FESTIVAL TOURING THE UK IN SUMMER/AUTUMN 2018
Aperture: Asia & Pacific Film Festival is a new UK-wide film festival dedicated to screening some of the boldest, most daring, challenging, and striking films from Asia and the Pacific. Focusing particularly on underrepresented cinemas, from Azerbaijan to Vanuatu and everything in between, the festival aims to open windows on worlds whose landscapes and peoples remain largely absent from UK screens. Aperture is the only festival in the UK currently with a remit that specifically covers the whole of Asia and the Pacific.
The festival is co-founded and co-directed by Sonali Joshi and Jasper Sharp. Presented in partnership with CREAM, University of Westminster, the festival is supported by Purin Pictures.
Aperture/London Part 2 will take place in mid-September, comprising a Southeast Asian focus and a one-day symposium hosted by CREAM, University of Westminster.
Aperture is jointly presenting some events with other festivals, including GemArts Masala Festival in July and Chinese Visual Festival in September.
JAEFF reveals this year’s exceptional line-up!
From Friday 21 September until Sunday 23 September, JAEFF will be screening 5 classic feature-length films paired with 4 outstanding contemporary shorts rarely screened in the UK.
Join us for a weekend of discovery, as we focus on themes of youth and protest in Japanese cinema from the 1960s and 70s new wave period to today.
Tickets are now on sale!
Do not miss the opportunity to attend our screenings as well as our free admission panel discussion with world renowned experts in Japanese cinema including film historians, academics, and curators!
Friday 21 September 2018 – 6.45pm – King’s College, Lucas Lecture Theatre (Strand Campus)
Opening night gala is an exclusive screening of Ko Nakihara’s feature debut Crazed Fruit – one of the first Japanese New Wave films and a fitting tribute to the recent passing of acting legend Masahiko Tsugawa.
This film will be paired with a short experimental piece, Your Voice Came Out Through My Throat, by award winning artist Yamashiro Chikako.
Saturday 22 September 2018 – 6pm – Close-Up Film Centre
Forest of Oppression with extended introduction
+ video clips
Japan, 1967, Dir Ogawa Shinsuke, Documentary, 105min.
Shinsuke Ogawa’s astonishing documentary takes the audience behind the barricades and into the heat of running battles with riot police in this chronicle of the student occupation movement in 1967 Japan at the Takasaki City University of Economics.
Perhaps the greatest chronicler of the student movement in Japan, Ogawa would live among his subjects, his camera moving among them. This raw and immediate filmmaking style presents a grounds-eye view of the struggle, often capturing clashes with riot police in the thick of the action.
The boundary between filmmaker and subject is increasingly eroded, mirroring Ogawa’s unwavering faith of the power of collective action and living – the Ogawa Pro filming collective itself was run on socialist principles, with members voting of production decisions.
Forest of Oppression will be introduced by Ricardo Matos Cabo, an independent film programmer and researcher, who will give a short illustrated presentation about the first collective films made by Ogawa Shinsuke and talk about the student movement in Japan in the 1960s.
Saturday 22 September 2018 – 8.30pm – Close-Up Film Centre
Dir. UMMMI., 9 min,
Nagisa Oshima weaves a tale of ideological book thievery, situationist performance, fantasy Noh theatre productions, sexual revolution, and personal liberation in this Art Theatre Guild (ATG) classic.Diary of a Shinjuku Thief was heavily influenced by the post-Shingeki theatre movement, whose main practitioners were Juro Kara and Shūji Terayama. Rejecting the long modern trajectory toward “realist” theatre, these playwrights turned toward premodern theatrical forms, including Noh, Kabuki, and Bunraku. Much like Masahiro Shinoda’s Double Suicide, this film questions the relationship between reality and art, sending the protagonists into plays-within-a-film and featuring actual people as themselves in ad-libbed scenes. Shinjuku was a major center for the art-theatre scene in the late 1960s, and several settings remain largely unchanged today, including Kinokuniya and the plaza outside the east exit of the station.
Diary of a Shinjuku Thief is paired here with UMMMI.’s Desktop Treasure, a film which attempts to go beyond borders through mixing up personal areas of the Internet by bringing out online and analogue records, personal spaces lived in by the actor, old blogs and e-mail log in screens, and mixed video footages of various qualities.
Sunday 23 September 2018- 2pm – Barbican Cinema 3
Panel Discussion – The Tremors of the Japanese New Wave
A special discussion event in support of the Japanese Avant-garde and Experimental Film Festival’s programme of youth orientated films from the new wave period of the 1960s and 70s.
This free admission panel event will bring together world renowned experts in Japanese cinema including film historians, academics, and curators. Following the festival themes of youth and protest, they will address questions surrounding of the legacy of the cultural and social upheaval in Japan in the 1960s and the thematic and stylistic influences from the Japanese avant-garde.
Given the current cinematic climate, the question of gender representation in cinema is more prescient than ever. The panel will elucidate on the male dominated Japanese New Wave and discuss how filmmaking in Japan might, or might not, be diversifying. A factor that is reflected in this year’s JAEFF line-up.
Free admission, booking essential.
Sunday 23 September 2018- 4pm – Barbican Cinema 3
Susumu Hani blurs the line between fiction and documentary in his feature film debut. Bad Boys depicts the disaffected lives of “sun tribe” delinquents (similar to US “greasers”). Filmed in a dispassionate cinema-vérité style, Bad Boys chronicles the militaristic daily routines of reform school life with little sense of release or salvation (both for inmates and audience). Relief from the grind is found through occasional triumphs of collective action, which point to Hani’s Marxist credentials, and in avant-garde musical pioneer Tōru Takemitsu’s aching score.Bad Boys is paired here with Kioto Aoki’s Studio Sunrise: a reflected self-portrait imitating movements of the sun.
Special thanks to Iwanami Audio-Visual Media Inc. for facilitating this showing of Bad Boys, and to the Japan Foundation for the 35mm print.
Transgender actor Pîtâ gives an astonishing performance as Eddie, hostess at Bar Genet – where she’s ignited a violent love-triangle with reigning drag queen Leda for the attentions of club owner Gonda. One of Japan’s leading experimental filmmakers, Matsumoto bends and distorts time, and freely mixes documentary interviews, Brechtian film-within-a-film asides, Oedipal premonitions of disaster, his own avant-garde shorts, and even on-screen cartoon balloons. Funeral Parade of Roses is a celebration of youth and subcultures, a condemnation of intolerance, and a one-of-kind cinematic experience.This key work of queer cinema screens in a new 4K digital restoration and is paired with Looking for Jiro, a performance video by artist Tina Takemoto inspired by the real-life case of a gay Japanese immigrant interned in the US during WWII.
The London East Asia Film Festival (LEAFF) will run 25 October to 4th November with multiple UK and International premieres will showcase enchanting stories, insightful discussions and diverse filmic voices from the likes of South Korea, Hong Kong, Taiwan, Japan, China and Southeast Asia.