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Eight Dramatic Features In Competition


CASHBACKCASHBACK 

Monday, March 19-----Eight dramatic features are competing for  the Jury Prizes at the 10th Bermuda International Film Festival, which began on Friday evening. The dramatic features are vying for the Mary-Jean Mitchell Green Award, which includes a cash prize of $5,000. The festival’s competition slots in the Best Narrative Feature category are restricted to first- and second-time feature directors.

FRESH VISIONS – COMPETITION FEATURES

CASHBACK (United Kingdom, director: Sean Ellis)

Starting life as an excellent short film that was nominated for an Academy Award, CASHBACK takes us into the poetic world of Ben, a young art student. After a painful breakup, Ben develops insomnia. To kill time, he starts working the late night shift at the local supermarket, where his artistic imagination runs wild. The film won the CICAE Award at the San Sebastian Film Festival.

DOES IT HURT? THE FIRST BALKAN DOGMA (Macedonia/Netherlands, director: Aneta Lesnikovska)

Director Aneta Lesnikovska has made a film about modern life in the Macedonian capital of Skopje. As she says, this is not “donkey in mountains”; rather, it is a refreshing, fast-paced and amusing film shot according to the rules of Dogma, made to mark the 10th anniversary of the Dogma manifesto.

FRESH AIR (Hungary, director: Agnes Kocsis)

Director Agnes Kocsis makes her feature film debut with a poignant film about a troubled relationship between a mother and a daughter set against the background of contemporary life in Hungary. Winner, Best First Film, Hungarian Film Week, and Best Film, Brussels International Film Festival.

HOW IS YOUR FISH TODAY? (China/UK, Guo Xiaolu)

A young man in southern China has killed his lover. He starts a lonely escape across the whole country towards his land of wonder, a snowy village at the northern border. Sitting at his desk in Beijing, a scriptwriter is writing that man's story. Winner of the Netpac Award at the Rotterdam International Film Festival and recently screened at the Sundance Film Festival. 

THE MAN OF NO RETURN (Russia, director: Katya Grokhovskaya)

Katya Grokhovskaya’s ambitious first feature is a gripping tale about how the lives of several families dramatically cross in a small suburban town in Russia. The main focus is the Knyazev family, an older couple with three adult children. The mother is terminally ill, while the father, a former military boss is in conflict with his son, who is desperate to end his military service.
 

MILITARY INTELLIGENCE AND YOU! (USA, director: Dale Kutzera)

A biting satire in the form of a World War Two training film, this wildly original film combines new scenes with those from vintage military productions to dramatise the importance of the U.S. military knowing what they are attacking, before they attack it ( a novel concept in the age of Bush/Iraq).

RETRIEVAL (Poland, director: Slawomir Fabicki)

An uncompromising portrait of a young man caught in a dilemma beyond his control. Living in an industrial city that has seen better days – high unemployment leaves the young little choice but to follow in their parents’ footsteps – Wojtek faces a dismal future. However, he has fallen in love with Katja, a slightly older Ukrainian woman who lives with her young child. Special Mention, Ecumenical Jury, Cannes Film Festival.

SWEET MUD (Israel/Germany/Japan, director: Dror Shaul)

Winner of the Grand Jury Prize in the World Cinema Competition at the Sundance Film Festival, this unique, emotionally vivid coming-of-age story shatters the utopian myths surrounding the kibbutz, Israel’s communal farm system. Twelve-year-old Dvir Avni lives with his psychologically unstable mother, whose past erratic behaviour has resulted in her being shunned by the other kibbutzniks.

For more information on these and other films showing at the Festival, log on to the Festival website: www.biff.bm

Sandy Mandelberger, Bermuda FF Online Dailies Editor

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