First titles of FFG2021 revealed: 'Annette', 'Un monde', 'Bad Luck Banging or Loony Porn' and more
We reveal the first titles of the 48th edition. Homegrown talent will be represented by Laura Wandel with playground drama Un monde, and Vincent Meessen with Juste un mouvement. A hint of national pride can also be found in Annette, as Leos Carax' musical was filmed partly in Belgium. The Golden Bear will also be attending: the somewhat controversial Bad Luck Banging or Loony Porn by Radu Jude. In the short film selection will Film Fest Gent shine the spotlight on Greek director Jacqueline Lentzou, whose feature film debut, Moon, 66 Questions, will also be screened. And lastly, Andrea Arnold's Cow will also be shown at Film Fest Ghent.
Laura Wandel's powerful debut drops you off at the playground. Un monde is a drama about primary school children that possesses the intensity of a prison thriller and the immersion of a war drama. At the Cannes film festival, where Un monde premiered in the Un Certain Regard section, the audience's standing ovation moved the director and her cast to tears. Winning the FIPRESCI prize was the icing on the cake.
On her first day of primary school, 7-year-old Nora witnesses her big brother Abel being bullied. While her father wants her to talk, Abel forces her to remain silent. Caught in a conflict of loyalty, Nora will ultimately try to find her place, torn between children’s and adults' worlds.
Belgian film Un monde will open the Official Competition during the festival, in attendance of the director, the cast and the international jury. The film will be released on 20 October.
Juste un mouvement
Artist Vincent Meessen, who represented Belgium in the 2015 Venice Biennale, has devoted himself to cinema in recent years. In his film essays, he aims the camera mostly towards Africa and (neo)colonialism. For Juste un mouvement he has broadened his horizons even more. Central to the story is Omar Blondin Diop, a Nigerian Maoist who died under suspicious circumstances in Senegal in 1973. Six years earlier he played himself in La chinoise by Jean-Luc Godard.
Meessen switches between clips from the film and conversations with friends of the deceased activist. Not to place Diop on a pedestal, but to investigate if - and if yes: how? - his vision for the future could still be relevant. In researching this, Meessen encountered a new type of colonialism which is getting a firm grip on Senegal and Africa in general, supported by the Chinese communist party.
French anarchist Leos Carax' previous film - the kaleidoscopic Holy Motors - is still one of the most eccentric works of art of the 21st century. "So may we start?" asks Carax American brothers Ron and Russell Mael - who are, as rockband Sparks, also the creators of the scenario and the music - at the beginning of his flamboyant musical Annette. At which point this stormy, bizarre elegy gives up its first notes.
A magnetic Adam Driver plays a razor-sharp LA comedian who is in a relationship with Marion Cotillard's Ann, a charismatic opera singer. Don't expect La La Land, but a Wagnerian opus full of movement and unrelenting tragedy, featuring scenes in which people sing during oral sex and an uncanny baby steals the show. Annette was filmed for a large part in Belgium, for example at Flagey in Brussels, at the Concertgebouw in Bruges and at the underwater film studios in Vilvoorde.
Bad Luck Banging or Loony Porn
Ever since Radu Jude became the festival darling of 2012 with the domestic violence drama Everybody in Our Family, the Romanian director releases a new acclaimed film every year. His Golden Bear winner of 2021, Bad Luck Banging or Loony Porn, is just that.
In this quick-witted corona comedy, the versatile filmmaker again scratches his way through a thin layer of culture to catch a naturalistic glimpse of toxic human nature with his observing camera.
This time the 44-year-old filmmaker follows Emi from the sultry streets of Bucharest to her bedroom, where the teacher is visibly enjoying a steaming love session. When images of this sexual escapade later appear online, Emi's future is in the hands of a couple of shocked parents. Is she a bad teacher because she enjoys sex?
Director Radu Jude will be present during FFG2021 and gives a director's talk on Wednesday 20 October at KASKcinema.
CowAndrea Arnold has a soft spot for outsiders and outcasts perishing in a capitalistic world where freedom can only be found between the extremities of 'eating' and 'being eaten'. Figuratively speaking if we're talking about Arnold's road movie American Honey, but quite literally in Cow.
This intimate documentary tells the story of Luma, a milk cow who gives birth to a calf in the opening scene.
After that, Arnold documents the life of that calf until she is a grown milk cow herself. Cinematographer Magda Kowalczyk keeps so close to the animals that the lens almost fogs up when their wet noses zoom past, as to give the milk in your coffee and the meat on your plate an unforgettable face.
Kortfilmfocus & Moon, 66 Questions
Jacqueline Lentzou is without a doubt one of those talented directors to keep an eye on. In recent years she has conquered the short film circuit with quirky gems like Hector Malot: The Last Day of the Year and The End of Suffering (A Proposal), and this year her feature debut Moon, 66 Questions premiered in Berlin. Her refreshingly personal cinematic language can be described as intimate or dreamy, but it is mostly the extraordinary sensitivity with which her characters are portrayed that makes her one of the most remarkable names on our programme.