Our next preview is a considerably smaller section of the festival programme, Telescope, which focuses on new talent from the European Union. Twelve films comprise the section, three of which played at SFF. We believe the following are standouts that deserve a look.
Just the Wind | dir. Bence Fliegauf | HUN/GER/FRA
One of his country’s most internationally-recognised directors, Bence Fliegauf returned to his native Hungary after the well-received Womb to look at the life of the Romani people. Using true events as its basis, Just the Wind quickly gained recognition at this year’s Berlin International Film Festival, where it took out the Silver Bear Grand Jury Prize, the Amnesty Prize, and the Peace Film Award. Filmed in a naturalistic style and containing a menacing atmosphere, Just the Wind is a nuanced look at the racial persecution of the Romani people in Hungary.
L | dir. Babis Makridis | GRE
The first ever Greek film to be selected in the World Drama Competition section at the Sundance Film Festival, Babis Makridis’ L is written by Efthymis Filippou, who co-wrote both Alps and Dogtooth. Following a man living in his car who gets caught up in the undeclared war between motorcycle riders and car drivers, the film contains an incredibly strange concept, complete with deadpan humour. L has received plenty of negative press but there is a small group of people that consider it a gem.
Whores’ Glory | dir. Michael Glawogger | AUT
Premiering at last year’s Toronto International Film Festival, the third film of Michael Glawogger’s globalisation trilogy (following Megacities and Workingman’s Death) takes the viewer on a visual journey into the lives of women prostitutes in three very different settings: Thailand, Bangladesh and Mexico. The winner of a Special Jury Prize at last year’s Venice Film Festival, Glawogger is known for his understanding and control of composition, as well as examining the lives of those in extreme employment in a non-exploitative manner. Filled with moments of lucidity, the visual documentarian’s newest work is an astonishing and unflinching documentary. One of our favourite films at SFF.
KNOWN FILMS YET TO SCREEN AT AN AUSTRALIAN FESTIVAL
Oslo, 31 August | dir. Joachim Trier | NOR
Premiering in the Un Certain Regard section at the 2011 Cannes Film Festival to universal praise, Danish-Norwegian filmmaker Joachim Trier’s Oslo, 31 August follows a deeply unhappy man who wanders the streets of Oslo after being granted a one-day pass from his rehab clinic. Containing an outstanding performance from Anders Danielsen Lie, as well as some stunning cinematography, this is an intimate and devastating sophomore effort.
Our Children | dir. Joachim Lafosse | BEL/LUX/FRA/SUI
A dark domestic thriller starring Rosetta’s Emilie Dequenne and A Prophet’s Tahar Rahim, Lafosse successfully returns with a feature based on a true story. Examining gender politics amidst an extreme family dynamic, Our Children looks to contain strong performances and a powerful script.
THE DARK HORSES
Best Intentions | dir. Adrian Sitaru | ROU
There is little doubt that the Romanian New Wave is one of the most intriguing movements in the world at the moment, and as in his 2008 debut Hooked, Sitaru utilises subjective point-of-view camerawork. A hospital-bound drama punctuated by understated humour and family dysfunction, this looks like a solid addition to Romanian cinema.
The Legend of Kaspar Hauser | dir. Davide Manuli | ITA
Probably one of the most divisive actors working today, Vincent Gallo returns to play two parts in this expressionistic retelling of the Kaspar Hauser story. Featuring black-and-white photography, a soundtrack by Vitalic, UFOs, DJing, and more, comparisons have already been made to Jodorowsky’s El Topo.
THE MUST-SEES OF OUR FESTIVAL SCHEDULE
Oslo, 31 August | dir. Joachim Trier | NOR
We have been waiting a long time to see this universally praised feature from Danish-Norwegian filmmaker Joachim Trier. With a supposedly strong central performance from Anders Danielsen Lie, and some stunning cinematography, we cannot wait to see Trier’s follow-up to Reprise.
Shock Head Soul | dir. Simon Pummell | UK/NED
Telling the story of Daniel Paul Schreber, the man who wrote the influential autobiography of madness, Memoirs of My Nervous Illness, Shock Head Soul combines interviews, reconstructions and animation to challenge audiences about our understanding of mental illness and psychosis. A significantly unique portrait.
Hopefully this list helps decide your picks in the section. If you have already bought tickets to Telescope films, we would love to know your choices and your most anticipated of the category!