The Belgian films this year are a showcase for new talents and quirky filmmakers with a highly distinctive approach to the medium. Caroline Strubbe returns to Film Fest Gent with ‘I Am the Same, I Am An Other’, her follow-up to ‘Lost Persons Area’, and two debut films confirm the diversity of the new Flemish films d'auteur: ‘82 Days in April’ by Bart Van den Bempt and ‘Drift’ by Benny Vandendriessche & Dirk Hendrikx. From French-speaking Belgium, we have ‘L’étrange couleur des larmes de ton corps’, the new sophisticated giallo homage by the duo Hélène Cattet and Bruno Forzani. We are also screening ‘Stop The Pounding Heart’, a Belgian co-production.
I Am the Same, I Am An Other
‘I Am the Same, I Am An Other’ is the second film by Caroline Strubbe, whose debut ‘Lost Persons Area’ was shown at Cannes in 2009. In her latest film, which is competing for the main prize at Film Fest Gent, she intertwines elements of a psychological drama, a road movie and an unorthodox crime story to tell the moving tale of the inner journey of a man and a young girl on the run in Western Europe.
82 Days in April
Another Belgian film is ‘82 Days in April’, the debut by Bart Van den Bempt. He found inspiration for his film during a flight from Kyrgyzstan to Belgium, when he asked himself what would happen if the plane crashed. How would his parents cope with the loss? Thankfully, this grim thought did not become a reality but it did form the basis of ‘82 Days in April’. The producer is Ellen De Waele, who is also on the jury for the Belgian short films competition.
The programme also features ‘Drift’, a film by Benny Vandendriessche. Under the name Formatkiller, he makes advertising films and video clips (for Daan, Arid, Kris Dane and Bobbejaan Schoepen, among others). Vandendriessche’s debut film ‘Drift’ is the result of an intense collaboration with the performance artist Dirk Hendrikx. In Romania, they filmed a story about a man who goes looking for salvation after the loss of his girlfriend.
L'étrange couleur des larmes de ton corps
In ‘L’étrange couleur des larmes de ton corps’, Hélène Cattet & Bruno Forzani (both from Brussels) once again give free rein to their love of Italian giallo thrillers from the 1970s. As with their previous film, ‘Amer’, the result is an inventive collage of nightmarish scenarios, erotica and fetishism.
Finally, we are also screening a Belgian co-production: ‘Stop The Pounding Heart’ by the Italian film director Roberto Minervini.
On 25 September, Film Fest Gent will reveal the complete programme. It has already announced that the latest films by Steven Soderbergh, Joel & Ethan Coen and Roman Polanski, among others, will be screened at the festival. In addition, this year the annual exhibition is placing the work of Martin Scorsese in the spotlight. For more information about the programme, please visit www.filmfestival.be.
Film Fest Gent
8 – 19 October