“Our 2014 motto, ‘out to discover a new audience for new cinema,’ sums up the challenge we see for the coming years, as we set out to rejuvenate the conventional wisdom and the cinematic art itself, in the name of a ‘young’ cinema with youthful aims and needs,” announces Venice Days, presenting the lineup for its 11th edition, running from August 27 through September 6.
A new Venice Days Award will be presented by a jury of 28 young viewers, one from each of the 28 EU member countries, participating in the “28 Times Cinema” program. All first films will be competing for the Lion of the Future – Luigi De Laurentiis Prize for the best debut film in the entire Venice Film Festival as well as the Europa Cinemas Label Prize and the FEDEORA Prize (European and Mediterranean film critics federation) for Best Film and Best Young Director. “For the third year in a row, along with Miu Miu, we´re treating Venice to the ‘Women’s Tales’ program centered around female creativity, presenting two short films on August 28 and four Q&As with leading women artists in film worldwide, on August 29-30.”
Adrián Biniez’s El 5 de Talleres. From Venice Days: “After being expelled for a flagrant foul during a match in Primera C (the fourth division in Argentinian football), Patón Bonasiolle, the captain and midfielder from Talleres de Escalada, realizes his career as a footballer has come to an end.”
Laurent Cantet’s Retour a Ithaque. “Sun is setting on Havana. Five friends are gathered to celebrate the return of Amadeo after 16 years of exile in Madrid.”
Shawn Christensen’s Before I Disappear. “Based on the 2013 Academy Award® winning short film Curfew. At the lowest point of his life, Richie gets a call from his estranged sister, asking him to look after his eleven-year old niece, Sophia, for a few hours.”
Alex de la Iglesia’s Messi. “Filmed in Buenos Aires, Rosario and Barcelona with a screenplay by former Argentinian footballer Argentina Jorge Valdano, who is also the narrator, Messi mixes reconstructions played by actors, archive material and interviews with former footballers and trainers.”
Ivano de Matteo’s The Dinner (I Nostri Ragazzi). “Once a month, for years now, two brothers whose personalities and life choices couldn’t be more different—one a top lawyer, the other a politically-engaged pediatrician, their respective wives perennially at war with each other have met at a fancy restaurant, until one night, their kids pull off a stunt stupid enough to upset the precarious balance of the two families.”
Mario Fanfani’s Les nuits d’été. “In France in 1959, while draftees depart for the Algerian War, Michel and Hélène live the life of the perfect couple. He´s an ambitious notary; she devotes her time to charity work and bringing up their child. An ordinary ménage, if Michel wasn’t hiding an unmentionable secret.”
Christophe Honoré’s Métamorphoses. “When Europe skips class to climb aboard an eight wheel truck with a magnetic young man named Jupiter, little does she know of the journey of initiation that lies ahead of her. Just off the side of the motorway lies a land inhabited by powerful gods who can transform humans into plants or animals in the blink of an eye. Jupiter, Bacchus, Orpheus: Europe watches, listens and plays in this confrontation of gods and mortals, grasping a greater sense of life and love with these sweet vengeful seducers.”
Peter Hoogendoorn’s Between 10 and 12 (Tussen 10 en 12). “On a beautiful summer day, two policemen are on their way to bring a family the news that their daughter/sister has died in a car accident… At that moment two young lovers, Raymond and Katja, unaware, have just begun a new day.”
Kim Ki-duk‘s One on One. “Already dubbed a ‘trauma film’ due to its violent imagery and its ‘down and dirty’ feel, One on One has a storyline steeped in mystery: a female student is kidnapped, raped and killed. Seven members of the Shadows Sect stalk the seven people suspected of committing the crime, hunting down the killer.”
Sharon Maymon and Tal Granit’s The Farewell Party (Mita Tova). “A group of friends at a Jerusalem retirement home build a machine for self-euthanasia in order to help their terminally ill friend. When rumors of the machine begin to spread, more and more people ask for their help, and the friends are faced with an emotional dilemma.”
Guy Myhill’s The Goob. “We’re in the middle of a heat-wave in Fenland England. Goob Taylor has spent each of his sixteen summers helping Mum run the transport cafe and harvest the surrounding pumpkin fields. When Mum shacks up with swarthy stock-car driving supremo and ladies´ man Gene Womack, Goob becomes an unwelcome side thought. However Goob´s world turns when exotic pumpkin picker Eva arrives.”
Adityavikram Sengupta’s Labor of Love (Asha Jaoar Majhe). “Set in the crumbling environs of Calcutta, Labor of Love is a lyrical unfolding of two ordinary lives suspended in the duress of a spiralling recession.”
Jukka Pekka Valkepaa’s They Have Escaped (He Ovat Paenneet).
Marco Bonfanti, Claudio Giovannesi, Alina Marazzi, Pietro Marcello and Sara Fgaier, Giovanni Piperno, Costanza Quatriglio, Paola Randi, Alice Rohrwacher, Roland Sejko’s 9×10 Novanta. “The Istituto Luce turned ninety in 2014, its long history intertwined with that of Italy itself, through cinema and that unique treasure trove of images known to all as the Luce Archives. To celebrate its anniversary, some of the most acclaimed rising filmmakers in Italy were invited to make a small film, with each director selecting ten minutes of footage from the archives, out of the thousands of hours of footage to be found there.”
Rä di Martino’s The Show Mas Go On. “MAS, the department store in Via dello Statuto, opened in Rome at the turn of the last century as a high-end fashion emporium. The retro chandeliers are the only remnants of that era, since MAS has gone decidedly downscale…. This cult location becomes a ‘stage’ on which the human fauna that usually shops there is mixed in with performances and cinematic homages that attempt to recreate the venue’s spirit, energy and vast potential.
Masbedo’s The Lack. “Four variations on the theme of ‘absence’ embodied by six female characters.”
Keith Miller’s Five Star. “After John’s absent father is struck by a stray bullet, Primo takes it upon himself to verse the young boy in the code of the streets—one founded on respect and upheld by fear.” Reviews from Tribeca.
MIU MIU WOMEN’S TALES
Miranda July’s #8 Somebody. She’s invented a radically new messaging system.
Rok Biček’s Class Enemy (Razredni Sovraznik). “Due to a huge difference in the way they perceive life, the relationship between the students and their new German language teacher becomes critically tense.” Reviews from last year’s Venice International Film Critics Week.
Céline Sciamma’s Girlhood (Bande de Filles). “Oppressed by her family setting, dead-end school prospects and the boys law in the neighborhood, Marieme starts a new life after meeting a group of 3 free-spirited girls.” Reviews from Cannes.