10th edition CIFF – 10-14 April 2024

Aan niets overleden (2019 Feature Film)

Drama on the ‘culture of shame’ surrounding homosexuality and AIDS in the Surinamese/Antillean community. Thilda Purperhart hides her greatest love, but also her massive grief and shame behind her front door in the Bijlmer neighborhood of Amsterdam. An unexpected visitor threatens to uncover the family secret.

Asako I & II (Netemo sametemo) (2019 Feature Film)

Two years after the love of her life disappeared without a trace, Asako falls in love with another man who looks identical to him, although his personality couldn’t be more different. Calm everyday life and raging passions mix seamlessly in this study of love in all its complex contrariness.

Una banda de chicas (A Girl’s Band) (2019 Feature Film)

A direct, unpolished portrait of the alternative music scene in Buenos Aires, seen from a strictly female perspective. Former musician Marilina Giménez introduces a colorful series of local acts by women who control their own look and sound – and are not afraid to challenge the prevailing norms.

Bangla (2019 Feature Film)

Based on the life of the filmmaker himself, this romantic comedy tells the story of a second-generation immigrant in Rome. When he falls in love, his butterflies clash with parental expectations. A playful debut that tackles complex themes such as integration, multiculturalism, religion, and identity without losing its light-hearted tone.

Bellingcat, Truth in a Post-Truth World (2019 Feature Film)

In a complex world in which we are inundated with fake news, it is hard to decide which media and government bodies we can actually trust. In this documentary about international investigative collective Bellingcat, we meet various passionate amateurs who conduct intensive digital research on our behalf to separate the wheat from the chaff.

La camarista (The Chambermaid) (2019 Feature Film)

A charming, captivating drama about a chambermaid at an upmarket hotel, who seems invisible to the rich people whose rooms she cleans. Eve (Gabriela Cartol) tries to escape poverty by going back to school and starting new friendships, but that is easier said than done in this demanding, poorly paid job.

Camino, a Feature-length Selfie (2019 Feature Film)

Aching feet and moments of despair – but also minor miracles and growing strength. Doggedly stepping along the pilgrims’ way to Santiago de Compostela in north-west Spain, Martin de Vries films himself with his iPhone, in the hope of putting his life back on a firm footing. A self-portrait in two million steps.

Las campañas de invierno (The Winter Campaigns) (2019 Feature Film)

Filmmaker Rafael Ramírez takes Napoleon’s campaign to Russia as a starting point for his enigmatic feature debut that stands up for the non-logical. He presents a singularly mundane reality, but also a disturbing universe of fantasy, exploring the use of forms such as images, texts, and sounds to reach a challenging place in contemporary cinema.

Capharnaüm (Capernaum) (2019 Feature Film)

Twelve-year-old Zain is growing up without any hopes for the future in a crowded, dilapidated apartment in Beirut. After running away from home following a crisis, he finds shelter with an ‘illegal’ Ethiopian who takes him on to look after her baby. An energetic, poignant portrait of the expanding ‘precariat’ in this Lebanese metropolis

Chèche lavi (Looking for Life) (2019 Feature Film)

An honest, subtle portrait of two Haitian refugees who tell their stories on the US border. One toils to earn money, the other just to get admitted. Disappointment and resignation overcome them in turns. Where they are really better off is left unsaid.

Cold War (Zimna wojna) (2019 Feature Film)

An epic, doomed romance, set on either side of the Iron Curtain. In a scant 80 minutes, Cold War not only documents the entire history of the love between Polish musician Wiktor and his muse Zula, but also that of the developing musical movements in Eastern and Western Europe, which they encounter on their flight.

El despertar de las hormigas (Hormigas) (2019 Feature Film)

A young mother in Costa Rica runs out of patience. For too long, everything has been about her children, her husband and her family. Time to take matters into her own hands and organize life the way she wants it. Which is easier said than done in a conservative society, a poor family and a cramped home.

Dirty God (2019 Feature Film)

Young London mother Jade (a superb performance by Vicky Knight) must rebuild her life following an acid attack, although she hardly dares look in the mirror. Sacha Polak’s powerful portrait of a complex woman retains the intensity of her previous features, Hemel and Zurich.

Doubles vies (Non-Fiction) (2019 Feature Film)

In the Parisian publishing milieu, an editor and his author friend deal with midlife crises, wives, an industry threatened by social networks, and their own egos. Olivier Assayas (Personal Shopper, IFFR 2017) delivers his personal brand of screwball comedy, with sharp dialogues dissecting our modern age.

En cenizas (In Ashes) (2019 Feature Film)

Marco is a man who suffers from an identity disorder, as a consequence of the Colombian armed conflicts that forced him to change his identity multiple times. Director Camila Rodríguez Triana based En cenizas on a true story and delivers a strong political fiction film that explores the boundaries between cinema, theater, and performance.

Entre dos aguas (Between Two Waters) (2019 Feature Film)

Isaki Lacuesta has made a sequel to his La leyenda del tiempo (2006). The Roma adolescents from back then are now themselves fathers who want the best for their family, but hesitate about what that actually is. An intimate and natural portrait of struggling men that feels like a documentary.

The Favourite (2019 Feature Film)

This absurdist-comedic costume drama has been overloaded with prizes. Intrigue at the court of Queen Anne played with relish by three actresses at the height of their game. While England is at war with France, the queen eats blue cakes. A deliciously devious film like no other.

Grace Jones: Bloodlight and Bami (2019 Feature Film)

Grace Jones (1948) has been touring the world as a pop phenomenon, model and muse for decades. Beautiful, androgynous, passionate, idiosyncratic and volatile. This observational portrait compiles several years of filming explosive performances, behind the scenes, in the studio and during a personal trip to see family in Jamaica.

I Used to Be Normal: A Boyband Fangirl Story (2019 Feature Film)

Fangirls look out! Four fans of The Beatles, Backstreet Boys and One Direction talk candidly about how fandom changed their lives. Fascinating music documentary about hysterical teenagers growing up to be self-assured women. Director Jessica Lenski knows all about it: she became a massive fan of One Direction at the age of 31.

If Beale Street Could Talk (2019 Feature Film)

A moving, lyrical romantic drama that culminates in an emotional tragedy. In this sensual adaptation of James Baldwin’s eponymous novel, a pregnant woman in 1970s Harlem tries to prove her guy’s innocence. The couple are young, in love, and black. Will their love be able to flourish in this repressive, racist society?

Joel (2019 Feature Film)

Joel Noguera wins our hearts playing a nine-year-old adopted boy, but the inhabitants of a small town in Patagonia are less taken with him. Subtle drama about adoption and living together. Veteran filmmaker Carlos Sorín (Historias minimas) makes unease, good intentions, and the complex balance between these palpable in every scene.

A Land Imagined (2019 Feature Film)

On the fringes of Singapore, anonymous migrants work on an expanding global city. But even though they are building this new world, for its inhabitants they are invisible. What happens when one of them doesn’t turn up to work anymore? In this stylish noir, an insomniac detective is put on the case. Golden Leopard winner in Locarno.

Lazzaro Felice (Happy as Lazzaro) (2019 Feature Film)

Award-winning Italian director Alice Rohrwacher’s modern fable concerns the innocent Lazzaro and the other villagers who live like medieval serfs on a tobacco plantation. Following a dramatic incident, they are dragged kicking and screaming into the modern world – whether they’ll be better off there or not remains to be seen.

Loro (2019 Feature Film)

Extremely stylish, slightly absurdist drama about Silvio Berlusconi’s waning power. The exceptionally wealthy Italian politician discovers newcomers eroding his power base after a lifetime of scandal and political machinations. How long will the always-smiling Berlusconi be able to retain his slick mask?

Memories of My Body (Kucumbu tubuh indahku) (2019 Feature Film)

A sensitive Javanese boy explores his sexual identity through a dance company where male and female merge in a sensual way. In the wider world around him he sees only violence and intolerance. A poetic-realistic coming-of-age story, based on the life of dancer Rianto.

Monos (2019 Feature Film)

This hypnotizing, adventurous film about child soldiers in the jungle throws human logic overboard. In Monos, nature’s laws apply, the way teens imagine them. The result is a tense, explosive cocktail of a socially critical war film and a sensual, erotically charged coming-of-age story.

No coraçao do mundo (In the Heart of the World) (2019 Feature Film)

Fascinating characters inhabit the poor district of Contagem where Gabriel Martins and Maurelio Martins also grew up. No coração do mundo is their declaration of love for this district and its inhabitants: a surprisingly filmed mosaic story about people who continue to work for a better life – against their better judgement.

Noemí Gold (2019 Feature Film)

27-year-old Noemí Gold has an unwanted pregnancy. After trying for an abortion, she seeks out the help of a gynecologist who promptly reports her to the police. First time filmmaker Dan Rubenstein brings a fresh story with a great touch of humor that meditates on family, friends, and the role of society in present times.

Out of Tune (De frivillige) (2019 Feature Film)

Once a crook, always a crook. When multimillionaire Markus Føns is suspected of large-scale investment fraud and put on remand, he quickly tries to take things in hand. In the isolation wing for sex offenders, the experienced manipulator takes on the conductor of the prison choir.

Pájaros de verano (Birds of Passage) (2019 Feature Film)

A fascinating mix of native drama and hard-boiled crime film about the age-old traditions of the Colombian Waayu people and the destructive effects of the drugs trade. Once their lives were simple and clear, but in the late 1960s drugs introduced money – and violence.

A Private War (2019 Feature Film)

The gripping story of war reporter Marie Colvin, whose idealism and commitment to show the world the gruesome reality of war eventually led to serious psychiatric traumas. An excellent role by Rosamund Pike, who portrays the influential reporter with all her fervor and humanity.

Rafiki (2019 Feature Film)

“Good Kenyan girls become good Kenyan wives”, is what Kena and Ziki have heard all their young lives. But they want fun and adventure. And apparently not to be ‘good’, because they fall in love, to the dismay of those around them. A sparkling film in ‘Afrobubblegum’ style, in the words of director Wanuri Kahiu.

Shoplifters (Manbiki kazoku) (2019 Feature Film)

A poor Japanese ‘family’ takes in a needy, young girl. They compensate for their lack of money with tenderness, compassion and unconditional love. Unfortunately, there is scant room in Japanese society for such informal family systems. The shoplifters have to be careful not to be caught, because there is much more at stake than just a fine.

Sofia (2019 Feature Film)

Sofia, a Moroccan girl, is 20, unmarried and almost a mother – and didn’t even know she was pregnant. The unexpected birth causes major problems in a country where sex outside marriage is a criminal offence. Powerful feature debut that throws a composed yet sharp light on an unreasonable social system.

Sons of Denmark (2019 Feature Film)

Cornered by xenophobia, two young men become embroiled in a devilish dilemma. In response to intimidation, Zakaria decides it’s time to act, violently if need be. In Copenhagen, a member of the intelligence community tries to combat the threat professionally.

Tarde para morir joven (Too Late to Die Young) (2019 Feature Film)

Through the eyes of teenagers Sofia, Lucas and Clara, we see life in a Chilean commune in the summer of 1990, as the residents prepare to celebrate the New Year. The experiences of the three teenagers reflect the growing pains of Chile’s new democracy, after almost two decades of military dictatorship.

Tehran: City of Love (2019 Feature Film)

A former bodybuilder perks up when he gets the chance to train a young athlete, an overweight receptionist uses her sexy voice to seduce men on the telephone and a downcast religious singer decides to become a wedding entertainer. Three stories about love and loneliness in Tehran, in a film full of drily comic moments.

Tel Aviv on Fire (2019 Feature Film)

At the Israeli border when Salem mentions that he works on a popular TV series, the checkpoint official demands a more pro-Jewish twist to the romance in the soap. However this turns out to be easier said than done. A surprisingly light and comical way of capturing the Arab-Israeli conflict, which nevertheless tackles a painful truth.

Tierra adentro (Inland) (2019 Feature Film)

Mauro Colombo’s urgent documentary feature debut shows the filmmaker immersing himself in the Darién Gap, a dense and mysterious jungle that divides Panama and Colombia. At the dangerous border between these two countries, guerrillas, immigrants, indigenous people, farmers, drug traffickers, local police, and wild animals cross paths.

Todos lo saben (Everybody Knows) (2019 Feature Film)

A captivating, Spanish-language thriller by Iranian film master Asghar Farhadi, featuring acting royalty Penélope Cruz and Javier Bardem. What starts off as a romantic wedding party soon becomes a nerve-wracking kidnapping drama. To get her daughter back alive, Laura has to get help from family and friends, which promptly reveals all manner of secrets.