18th New Horizons International Film Festival [PROGRAMME]
The biggest film festival in Poland starts on 26th July and ends on 5th August. For one week and a half, Polish cinema fans will watch both films that won awards at Cannes or Sundance festivals and low-cost productions of “young wolves”.
Festival goes OUT
On the poster of this year’s 18th edition you can find Łukasz Berger’s installation Out, which is fitted in the silo of the former ammunition factory in Żagań. Paradoxically enough, the bottom of the concrete pit abounds in green; the branches of plants living there even “sneaked” into the frame of photographs of the installation.
Bergman, Roeg and others
The screening of eight digitally reconstructed films by Ingmar Bergman should become a great sensation. In Bergman’s masterpieces we can still seek answers to the questions that keep troubling us and are not different from those asked 50 years ago and we can try to tame the fears within us. We will see, among others, Wild Strawberries (1957), The Seventh Seal (1957), Persona (1966), Autumn Sonata (1978) or Fanny and Alexander (1982). An unquestionable hit of the festival will also be an exhibition In Bergman’s Style: Cinema, Fashion, Art with photographs, film clips, film stills, posters and clothes inspired by Bergman's cinema.
You must see at least one film from a retrospective on the works of 89-year-old British director Nicolas Roeg – the creator of masterpieces such as Don’t Look Now with Donald Sutherland and Julie Christie (based on the novel by Daphne du Maurier) or Walkabout with Aboriginal actor David Gulpilil.
There will also be a retrospective on films by Hungarian director Ildikó Enyedi, whose Body and Soul won last year’s festival in Berlin. An overview of new Iranian cinema, which has attracted a loyal audience around the world for years, can become quite a sensation, too.
Hits from Cannes and Berlin
During last year’s festival, all screenings of The Square from Sweden – the winner of the Cannes festival – were sold out. One of the films that will open this year’s festival on 26th July is Touch Me Not by Romanian director Adina Pintille, which won the Golden Bear at last year’s Berlinale. The film ‘is not a documentary, but not a fiction work, either,’ remarks Tómas Lemarquis, one of the actors collaborating with Pintille.
This year’s Grand Prix award at Cannes went to Spike Lee’s BlacKkKlansman – an excellent, very humorous story of a black policeman whose task is to infiltrate the Ku Klux Klan, but also an expression of protest against racism.
We also recommend another winner from Cannes – Girl by Belgian director Lukas Dhont, which picked up a bag of awards in France: from the Caméra d'Or (best debut) award to the Best Actor award for its main star Victor Polster. Girl is a story of teenager Lara; imprisoned in the boy’s body, she suffers from the lack of confidence that is necessary in ballet exercises and a ballerina’s career.
Lars von Trier shocks
One of the festival’s bigger sensations is going to be a screening of Lars von Trier’s new film The House That Jack Built with Matt Dillot playing the role of a serial killer. At Cannes, one part of the audience was fascinated with the intriguingly told story, but on the other hand, many were upset with brutal murder scenes. Thus, it can be something for spectators with particularly strong nerves.
An important counterbalance will be The Wild Pear Tree – a new film by Turkish director Nuri Bilge Ceylan, the winner of the Golden Palm in 2014. As usual, he offers a refined work full of subtlety and nuances.
Farhadi and young Iranian cinema
The programme of New Horizons includes Everybody Knows – Asghar Farhadi’s latest film made in Spain, but, presumably, some other work will become a sensation. We recommend works of young Iranian cinema, particularly seen from the perspective of Millennials weaned on films by Abbas Kiarostami. One of the proposed films is Keywan Karimi’s Writing on the City on the role of graffiti; the director was sentenced to 223 lashes and 6 years of imprisonment for insulting the sanctity of Islam and the government (as a result of appeals, the sentence was shortened to one year).
The programme will include at least a few of them, including Jagoda Szelc’s new film Monument and new works by Agnieszka Smoczyńska. There will also be an opportunity to see Another Day of Life – although this animation on Ryszard Kapuściński was not made by Poles, the audience at Cannes liked it very much.