Friday, 5th August – OPENING NIGHT
HUMAN CAPITAL (Il Capitale Umano)
Italy, 2013, 110 mins. (MA 15+)
When a cyclist is hit by an SUV on Christmas Eve, the lives of two very different families are irrevocably entwined, as the value of human life in an age of rampant capitalism and financial manipulation has to be addressed. Winner of innumerable awards, this film will get you talking!
Vanuatu, Australia, 2015, 100 mins. (M)
The first-ever film, shot entirely in Vanuatu on the volcanic island of Tanna, is an emotionally-engaging story of forbidden love. A spectacularly exotic film, made with non-professional actors, which is guaranteed to resonate deeply with its audiences. An unforgettable experience.
Saturday, 6th August – 9.30am
TEHRAN TAXI (Taxi Tehran)
Iran, 2015, 82 mins. (M)
Undaunted by his 20-year ban against move-making by the Iranian government, renowned director Jafar Panahi poses as a taxi driver and gives us a portrait of contemporary Tehran and its social challenges from inside the cab at great personal risk aided by his many ‘passengers’. This film has rightly won universal acclaim.
Saturday, 6th August – 11.15am
Malta, 2014, 101 mins. (M)
Based on astonishing true events, Malta’s first-ever submission to the Oscars tells two parallel stories of survival at sea, highlighting the flood of North African refugees in the Mediterranean, together with the fate of one small family fishing vessel, the Simshar. Don’t miss this highly-acclaimed docu-drama!
Saturday, 6th August – 1.55pm
THE ASSASSIN (Mie yin niang)
China, 2015, 105 mins. (PG)
The film, set in 9th century China, depicts a young girl who is kidnapped and trained to be an assassin. Her life of watchfulness, survival and fear is ultimately tested when she must choose between her family, her heart and her assassin’s creed. A breathtaking martial arts film with dreamlike overtones. Magnificent!
Saturday, 6th August – 3.55pm
THE SECOND MOTHER
Brazil, 2015, 112 mins. (M)
The good-natured maid has long been the nurturing figure in a Sao Paulo home, but is acutely embarrassed when her educated, confident daughter arrives upsetting the status quo and sparking a crisis in the boss-housemaid dynamic. This multi award-winning film with a terrific cast is both funny and serious. Highly recommended.
Saturday, 6th August – 6.50pm
France/Turkey/Germany, 2015, 97 mins. (M)
Five young orphan sisters, who share a common passion for freedom, rebel against their strict upbringing in modern patriarchal Turkey where their female lives are severely compromised. The bold musical score will draw you into total empathy with the youngest girl’s defiant spirit and her refusal to be broken. Unforgettable!
Saturday, 6th August – 8.45pm
THEEB (Naji Abu Nowar)
Jordan, 2014, 100 mins. (M)
An intimate coming-of-age story observed from a young Bedouin boy’s perspective (his name Theeb means wolf), as he embarks on a perilous journey across the deserts of Hijaz during WWI, guiding a wounded British officer to a secret destination. A spellbinding adventure film. Miss it at your peril!
Sunday, 7th August – 9.35am
A FAMILY AFFAIR (Mia oikogeneiaki ypothesi)
Greece/Australia, 2015, 82 mins. (G)
An age-old, little-known music tradition has been passed on from generation to generation on the island of Crete, but how can modern children uphold this music while finding their own voice? An inspirational film about the power of family and music, told through the lives of Greece’s most famous musical clan. A must-see for all creative music lovers.
Sunday, 7th August – 11.25am
MARSHLAND (La isla minima)
Spain, 2014, 104 mins. (MA15+)
An atmospheric thriller set in the period between the death of Franco and the future democracy in Spain. Two mismatched cops (one fascist, one left-wing) are assigned to find a serial killer in Andalucia’s fenland marshes. Sleek, intelligent, we can never have too many thrillers like this. A gripping experience!
Sunday, 7th August – 2.00pm
THE EMBRACE OF THE SERPENT (El abrazo de la serpiente)
Colombia/Venezuela, 2015, 125 mins. (M)
This visually impressive film pays tribute to the lost cultures and civilisations of the Colombian Amazon. The relationship between a shaman, the lone survivor of his tribe, and two western scientists (based on real people) over twin expeditions unfolds with stunning directorial sureness and a more fascinating character than the shaman would be hard to find. Not to be missed!
Sunday, 7th August – 4.20pm
Iceland, 2015, 92 minds. (M)
A wryly observed tale of two obstinate bachelor farmers who haven’t spoken in 40 years but are forced to do so when their rare and precious sheep are threatened by disease. A real audience favourite, full of humour and tenderness. Beautifully made and most enjoyable!
Sunday, 7th August – 6.45pm
Germany/Poland, 2014, 98 mins. (M)
A multi awardwinning, almost Hitchcockian drama of mistaken identity set in Berlin immediately after WWII. A jazz singer, after reconstructive surgery, looks for and finds her missing husband who doesn’t recognise her. Did he betray her to the Nazis? Another successful director/actor combination after ‘Barbara’ and the musical score is simply fabulous. Riveting stuff!
Sunday, 7th August – 8.55pm
THE BRAND NEW TESTAMENT (Le Tout nouveau testament)
God is alive and is living in Brussels with his wife and two children! With the help of six disciples, his offspring decide to liberate the world from his malign influence and a Brand New Testament is created. If you can get past the initial blasphemy, you’ll find it a very moral and highly entertaining film. A fun way to end our festival!