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The Joker Coming October.

Phillip Bergson

Writing about Films and Festivals.


Film Critic, UK, member of Fipresci


Winner of the Student Journalist of the Year competition in the UK weekly New Statesman, as a Classics Scholar Phillip Bergson then founded the Oxford Film Festival and, on graduating, was selected by "The Sunday Times" as a 'New Critic' and in the same week began broadcasting on film for many BBC Radio programmes. A contributor to the "Times Literary Supplement", "TES", "Screen International", "Film Bulletin", "Film a Doba" inter alia, he also worked for the "European Script Fund", has scripted shorts and features (that have been produced and released) and, fluent in eight-and-a-half languages, currently programmes and advises several international film festivals. At the National Media Museum in his native Yorkshire, he created the "Eurovisions" project, to promote classic and contemporary European cinema.

As a Jury Member



Sunny start in Athens of the North


The sun shines down on the 72nd Edinburgh International Film Festival with large and enthusiastic audiences in new venues in an annual event (it has the longest unbroken record of any large scale film festival in the world) that has moved away from its traditional berth as part of the largest arts festival in the world (which fills the elegant capital of Scotland every August where prices, certainly for accommodation, rival those at Cannes) to become a stand-alone event now unreeling in late June, and apparently with reels enjoyed in the Ceilidh last night.Now with English critic Mark Adams as artistic director for the fourth time the EIFF follows on from its origins as a documentary event, and showcase for near-exploitation (then politely described as American Independents)-much of which is reflected in the 2018 collection,while incorporating several competitions and an all-encompassing clutch of domestic premieres,shorts,thematic seasons,and Industry events, targetting both professional as well as paying audiences,and managing to lure handfuls of foreign film-makers north of the Border  to pitch or present completed films.An vident highlight so far has been the world premiere of a zany comedy set in Bradford and Blackpool called Eaten by Lions which has enjoyed two sell-out screenings in the newish Cineworld complex, and the presence of Billy Zane who excels in a new British pyschological drama Lucid but as so many of the films seem to be under some kind of drama,I need to check what I may say about some of the entries as I prepare for my first Scottish Breakfast in years.Of the midnight matinee of Day of the Dead in the Filmhouse,new restoration of George A.Romero's 1985 zombie instalment, nothing more need be said.


Phillip Bergson                       20 June-1 July 2018            


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