The War Game is among the films screening in Berwick
Alongside the Fact or Fiction titles - which include Peter Watkins's long-censored The War Game (1965) and Vampir-Cuadecuc (Pere Portabella, 1970), one of the strangest behind-the-scenes films ever made (transforming Jess Franco's Count Dracula (1970) with Christopher Lee into something genuinely otherworldly) - the 2015 festival also introduces a new strand: Berwick New Cinema. This section includes films such as Androids Dream (Ion de Sosa, 2014), Abdul & Hamza (Marko Grba Singh, 2015) and A Spell Of Fever (Safia Benhaim, 2014), highlighting new and innovative filmmaking that pushes genre boundaries. The strand encompasses shorts, midlengths and feature-length films. A series of talks will take place over the festival weekend to contextualise these films and potentially open up a debate around the art of cinema.
BFMAF 2015 also includes two competitive events for filmmakers. On the Saturday night, seven short films and artists' videos compete in the 3rd Inntravel Short Film Awards (the details of the shortlist can be seen here), presided over by a jury consisting of curator Fatos Üstek and filmmakers Beatrice Gibson and Salomé Lamas (Lamas's No Man's Land is also screening at the Festival). All of the films in contention are screened during the awards, with the winner announced at the end of the presentation (with a prize of £750). On the Sunday afternoon, the seventh Young Filmmakers Showcase draws attention to young filmmaking talent from across north-east England and south-east Scotland, with two age categories - The Chris Anderson Award (for filmmakers 15-19 years old) and The Young Filmmakers Award (for filmmakers 14 years and under). The shortlisted filmmakers will also see their films on the big screen and be in with a chance of winning £250 towards their next filmmaking project.
Ion de Sosa: "Making it look like this film wasn't made today also draws attention to the texture and the colour"
A range of events are programmed across the festival duration in addition to the film screenings and installations, including musical performances and storytelling. This year BFMAF has further reduced the price of passes and tickets: a Full Festival Pass is £25, a Weekend Pass is £15, and a Day Pass is £10 (or £20, £10 and £8 respectively for concessions). Tickets are also available for individual screenings and events. For more information - and to purchase passes or tickets - head to the festival's official website: berwickfilm-artsfest.com.
The festival's film programme is as follows (all screenings are at The Maltings Theatre & Cinema):
Wednesday, September 23
- Opening gala: Sorrow And Joy (Nils Malmros, 2013) - 7pm
Thursday, September 24
- A Spell Of Fever - 4pm
- Salam Cinema (Mohsen Makhmalbaf, 1995) - 7pm + special guest Phil Collins Q&A
- Battles (Isabelle Tollenaere, 2015) - 9:15pm
Friday, September 25
- Berwick New Cinema Shorts with Q&A (various) - 1:45pm
- Vampir-Cuadecuc - 4pm
- Tangerines (Zaza Urushadze, 2013) - 7pm
- Mercuriales (Virgil Vernier, 2014) - 9pm
Saturday, September 26
- Archipelagos, Naked Granites (Daphné Hérétakis, 2014) + I Forgot! (Eduardo Williams, 2014) - 12pm
- No Man's Land (Salomé Lamas, 2012) - 1:30pm
- Abdul & Hamza - 2pm
- Seamus Harahan profile screening + Q&A - 3:30pm
- The War Game + The Dud Effect (Deimantas Narkevi?ius, 2008) - 5pm
- Inntravel Short Film Awards - 7pm
- The Raft of the Medusa (Richard Heslop, 2015) - 9:30pm
Sunday, September 27
- Deimantas Narkevicius profile screening + Q&A - 1:30pm
- Young Filmmakers Showcase - 1pm
- Androids Dream - 3:30pm
- Limbo (Anna Sofie Hartmann, 2014) - 4:30pm
- Closing Gala: Güeros (Alonso Ruiz Palacios, 2014) - 7pm
More reviews to follow.
- Androids Dream - Blade Runners In Benidorm interview