Rotterdam Fest Chooses International Lineup
by Mike Jones
The Rotterdam International Film Festival has announced part of its line
up, including CineMart projects, sidebar screenings, and a portion of the
films competing for the Tiger Awards. Jesse Peretz's "First Love, Last
Rites" is so far the only U.S. film in Competition that has been
announced. Others include "Dead Beetle" by Pavel Marek (Czech Republic),
"Dance of the Wind" by Rajan Khosa (India), "Motel Cactus" by Ki-Yong Park
(South Korea), "Der Siebtelbauern" by Stefan Ruzowitzky (Austria),
"Knoflikari" by Petr Zelenka (Czech Republic), "Marie Baie des anges" by
Manuel Pradal (France), "Who the Hell is Juliette?" by Carlos Marcovich
(Mexico), "Vive elle" by Miriam Kruishoop (The Netherlands) and "The Long
Journey" by Le Hoang (Vietnam).
The main program is set to include "Me and My Brother" by Robert Frank
(USA/Austria), "12 Storeys" by Eric Khoo (Singapore), "Scars" by James
Herbert (USA), "Hana-bi" by Takeshi Kitano (Japan), "Taste of the Cherry"
by Abbas Kiarostami (Iran), "Afterglow" by Alan Rudolph (USA), "Tamas et
Juli" by Ildiko Enyedi (Hungary), "Under the Skin" by Carine Adler (United
Kingdom), "TwentyFourSeven" by Shane Meadows (United Kingdom), "Brat" by
Alexei Balabanov (Russia), "Gummo" by Harmony Korine (USA), "London Brief"
by Jon Jost (United Kingdom/France), "Comédia infantil" by Solveig Nordlund
(Mozambique/Sweden/Portugal), "Strange Time" by Natalya Pyankova (Russia),
"La cruz" by Alejandro Agresti (Argentina), and "Sleeping Man" by Kohei
Oguri (Japan) among others.
Of the other programs, one titled "The Cruel Machine", will explore
audiences fascination with "gruesome films" such as Neil LaBute's "In the
Company of Men", Kirby Dick's "Sick", Michael Haneke's "Funny Games", and
the premiere of the mystery thriller "Cure" by Kiyoshi Kurosawa. States the
sidebar's description "There are things with which any identification is so
terrifying that we don't dare to watch. But there is also a fascination
with loathing: curiosity wins over fear." Other programs include "Italian
Exploitation Films" and "Exploding Cinema" which will use Cindy Sherman's
"Office Killer", the work of Kyle Cooper and his title sequence for
"Seven", and the work of various installation artists, designers, and
musicians to "investigates how artists from a variety of disciplines use
the tools of cinematography and co-operate with filmmakers."
Just over 50 filmmakers were selected to participate in this year's
CineMart, where filmmakers bring their projects to private meetings with
potential financial backers. Selected projects include Alex Cox's "Hacia el
Desierto", Angus Gibson and Theboho Mahlatsi's "Streetbash", Clara van
Gool's "The Story of a Bomb", Park Kwang-Su's "Yi Jae-Su's War", Janos
Szasz's "Aquis Submersus", and Ning Ying's "I Love Beijing". American
projects to make the trip include Charles Burnett's "Rachel and Gerard",
Christopher Munch's "Backward Looks, Far Corners", Lorenzo O'Brien's
"Teenangels", and Theodore Thomas' "Baby Photo".
Some films assisted by the festival's Hubert Bals Fund to have their
premiere at the festival include "Fibra Optica" by Mexico's Fransisco
Athie, Columbia's "The Debt" by Nicolas Buenaventura and Manuel Jose
Alvarez and "Mektoub" by Nabil Ayoch described as a Moroccan road movie of
drugs and corruption. Aside from helping to finish films, the fund is also
used to help their distribution. This year the first videos of the endevor
will be presented including "Frozen" by Wang Xiao-shuai.
[Check the festival web site for the complete CineMart lineup and film
program updates @ www.iffrotterdam.nl]