From the 21st to the 28th of March, the African Film Festival of Cordoba – FCAT will celebrate its twelfth edition. FCAT is the only Festival of African cinema in Spanish language. After a non-competitive edition, the FCAT- Córdoba is coming back with two competitive sections and four non-competitive sections, where 60 films of 30 countries will be screened
The 12th edition will open with the projection of Adiós Carmen, by Mohamed Amin Benamraoui, first film in Riffean (Berber dialect), that also has Spanish performers.
Competitive Section: Features and Shorts
In this edition, 16 fiction and documentary films will compete in in the features section. On one hand, the leitmotif of this section is the present time (with an exhibition of films produced between 2013 and 2015), and on the other, the geographic diversity of these productions, in order to represent the heterogeneity of African films.
Beyond the topics, the feature films of this section are notable for their themes of search, reflection and innovation in the language of cinema. However, there are some topics that stand out, like homosexuality whose persecution in many African countries represents an issue that concerns a great number of filmmakers, like Abdellah Taïa (L’Armée du salut) or Jim Chuchu (Stories of our lives).
With these same criteria, the selection of 11 fiction and documentary African short films were made, that stand out for their reflections using the language of cinema. With more condensed stories, as imposed by the format, these shorts are a good example of the ability of emergent African filmmakers.
Among others, this section will host the screening of Au commencement, the winning short film of the REK short films competition, organized by Dakar Culture (the prize consisted of the director’s presence and participation at the 12th FCAT – Cordoba) and Solo una vez, winner of the 2014 CEIBA Award for best film at the South to South Travelling Film Festival of Equatorial Guinea.
Non competitive sections
With 12 titles, the “Afroscope” section is presented as in-depth analysis of contemporary Africa through internal and external viewss. Thus, apart from African filmmakers, renowned European directors such as Aki Kaürismaki or Pedro Costa show their interest in African realities in “Afroscope.” This section includes a tribute to Khady Sylla, the recently deceased Senegalese director, and René Vautier, known as the “most censored filmmaker of France”, who died last January. In honour of Vautier, Avoir 20 ans dans les Aurès and Afrique 50, considered the first anticolonialist film, will be screened.
The section “Tales from the Past: South Africa and Angola” presents a cinematic journey through the story of the two countries, with a special tribute to Angola, celebrating 40 years of independence.
The traditional section of the Festival, “African Diaspora” includes a sample of Afro-Latino cinema. Among the more recent titles, the already classic film Orfeu Negro, Palm d’Or winner in Cannes in 1959, will be screened.
To complete this parallel program, the section “Tribute to Emil Abossolo-Mbo” is a tribute that includes 7 films by Cameroonian actor Abossolo Mbo – one of the few festival tributes to an African actor.
Furthermore, a special session will screen the documentary Congo, un médecin pour sauver les femmes, which examines the work of the gynecologist and surgeon Denis Mukwege, who specialises in treating women who were victims of sexual abuse in Congo. Angèle Diabang, director of the documentary, will attend this screening.
Beyond the screens
Among other parallel activities, will be a panel on film criticism, featuring filmmakers, film critics, and journalists that will have Javier H. Estrada (of film magazine Caimán) as their moderator.
There will also be a training forum that will facilitate a space for journalists, critics, researchers and filmmakers to share knowledge. Titled “The tree of words,” the forum will reach all the listeners of Radio Nacional de España (National Radio of Spain) and Radio Exterior de España (External Radio of Spain).
For more information on this year’s FCAT film festival, visiti http://www.fcat.es/home-en-2/.