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Filmmakers of the Present Competition in Locarno

The selection includes, among the 17 films confirmed to date, 12 world premières, and 5 international premières, of which 5 are first films. Two exclusives will screen out of competition. The selection for 2008 is distinguished by its strong Latin flavour: from Argentina, Brazil, Chile and Spain, via Portugal and Italy to France – competing with three titles.

Conceptual Films. The 2008 selection confirms the radical line that is this section’s hallmark, with a highly diverse range of narrative and aesthetic experiments, all of which interrogate the language of cinema. In Filmefobia, Brazilian Kiko Goifman blurs the boundaries of documentary and fiction in a fascinating reflection on phobia and fear, and on mise en scène and film. A Zona by Sandro Aguilar invites us on an enchanting sensory and temporal journey: a brilliant first feature film from the young Portuguese director whom Locarno has welcomed from his earliest shorts. Just as intense, Gustavo Fontán’s La orilla que se abisma abandons narrative altogether to offer an hour of pure visual and literary poetry, scanned by verse from the great Argentinean writer Juan L. Ortiz. Another experiment at the fringes of narrative with Siegfried’s Kinogamma, that takes us from Russia to India in a hallucinatory road movie with no dialogue.

Metaphysical Fictions. Koki Yoshida, a 28 year old Japanese, a student of Nobuhiro Suwa, competes with Shorei X (Symptom X), a minimalist first film about the monotonous everyday life of a man and his schizophrenic mother, built around the repetition of gestures and the minutiae of the mise en scène. Resolutely more playful, Dav ide Manuli’s Beket takes three wandering characters into an absurd and crazy no man’s land – an unusual film for Italian cinema, shot in three weeks on a tiny budget, and with the participation of Fabrizio Gifuni and Paolo Rossi. A completely different time-scale applied to the making of Jean-Charles Fitoussi’s latest feature, Je ne suis pas morte, which was shot over several years. The film is characterised by the director’s very personal world, at the borders of reality and fiction.

The social, between realism and poetry. The 2008 selection also contains a large number of works on social or political themes – yet always with a strong cinematic parti-pris. This is the case with Welate Efsane (The Land of Legends), a highly realistic fiction from Rahim Zabihi, an Iranian Kurdish filmmaker who offers a striking picture of his country, still devastated by the Iran-Iraq war. In Napoli Piazza Municipio, a poetic documentary by Bruno Oliv iero, the town square in the port of Naples becomes a metaphor for the whole of society. Finally, Switzerland presents two films that are firmly rooted in the present day: two documentaries with very different approaches, yet related by their common concern to show and reflect upon current political events.

La forteresse by Fernand Melgar (Exit – le droit de mourir) is a deeply moving immersion in the daily experiences of asylum-seekers at the Registration Centre in Vallorbe, in French-speaking Switzerland; whilst Danilo Catti’s Giù le mani, shown in a special out-of-competition screening, is an outstanding account, from the inside, of the strike by railway maintenance workers in Bellinzona, who mobilised support from the whole of Italian Switzerland last spring.

Opening Screening (Out of Competition):
Locarno meets Gennevilliers
The Locarno Festival presents as a world première a programme of three short films in collaboration with Théâtre2Gennevilliers, a contemporary producing theatre on the outskirts of Paris.
At the instigation of the Théâtre2Gennevilliers and Olivier Assayas, initial godfather to the project, two filmmakers, Jean-Paul Civeyrac and Shinji Aoyama, were each invited to make a short film in the town of Gennevilliers. These two films are accompanied by a third, directed by Pascal Rambert, who is also a stage director and director of the theatre.

AVANT QUE TU REVIENNES
by Pascal Rambert – France – 2008 – 20 min.
with Kate Moran, Clémentine Baert, David Bobée, Lorenzo de Angelis, Gilles Groppo, Grégory Guilbert

LE PETIT CHAPERON ROUGE
by Shinji Aoyama – France – 2008 – 35 min.
with Judith Chemla, Lou Castel

MALIKA S’EST ENVOLÉE
by Jean-Paul Civeyrac – France – 2008 – 35 min.
with Laurent Lacotte, Renan Carteaux, Mounia Raoui

Out of Competition

GIÙ LE MANI
by Danilo Catti – Switzerland – 2008 – 90 min.

Competition

A ZONA (Uprise)
by Sandro Aguilar – Portugal – 2008 – 99 min.
with Isabel Abreu, António Pedroso, Gustavo Sumpta, Cátia Afonso, Tiago Barbosa,Guilherme Pina Cabral

ALICIA EN EL PAÍS
by Esteban Larraín – Chile – 2008 – 86 min.
with Julio Arrieta, Esther Arrieta, Sebastián Antico

BEKET
by Davide Manuli – Italy – 2008 – 78 min.
with Luciano Curreli, Jerome Duranteau, Fabrizio Gifuni, Paolo Rossi, Roberto Nanni, Roberto Freak Aantoni, Simona Caramelli

EL BRAU BLAU
by Daniel Villamediana – Espagne – 2008 – 66 min.
with Victor J. Vazquez

EL SUEÑO DEL PERRO
by Paulo Pécora – Argentina – 2008 – 95 min.
with Guillermo Angelelli, Néstor Noriega, Mónica Lairana, Aldo Niebuhr

FILMEFOBIA
by Kiko Goifman – Brazil/Germany – 2008 – 80 min.
with Jean-Claude Bernardet, Cris Bierrenbach, Hilton Lacerda, Livio Tragtenberg, Ravel Cabral

JE NE SUIS PAS MORTE
by Jean-Charles Fitoussi – France – 2008 – 190 min.
with Alix Derouin, Frédéric Bonpart, Hélène Boons, Laurent Talon, Jacopo Domenicucci, Stéphanie Julien
Production: Aura été

KINOGAMMA PART 1: EAST
KINOGAMMA PART 2: FAR EAST
by Siegfried – France – 2008 – 76 min., 70 min.

LA FORTERESSE
by Fernand Melgar – Switzerland – 2008 – 100 min.

LA ORILLA QUE SE ABISMA
by Gustavo Fontán – Argentina – 2008 – 64 min.

LA VIE AILLEURS
by David Teboul – France – 2008 – 64 min.

NAPOLI PIAZZA MUNICIPIO
by Bruno Oliviero – Italy – 2008 – 55 min.

PAR DZIMTENITI (Three Men and a Fish Pond)
by Laila Pakalnina – Latvia – 2008 – 52 min.

SHOREI X (Symptom X)
by Koki Yoshida – Japan – 2007 – 67 min.
with Masaari Sakamoto, Kiyoko Miyashige

WELATE EFSANE (The Land of Legends)
by Rahim Zabihi – Germany/Iran – 2008 – 73 min.
with Ali Zabihi, Shaboo Soleymani, Rahim Tajani, Rahman Mohamadzadeh, Ali Majidzadeh, Faryad Fatolahi
Dailies on fest21.com

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