Assorted treats on the menu at this year’s Bafici
For the Herald
BA’s leading film event kicks off today with hundreds of screenings until April 13This year’s leading event for Buenos Aires moviegoers kicks off tomorrow with an extensive agenda of screenings, audiovisual events, exhibitions, retrospectives, book presentations and conferences. The 16th edition of the Buenos Aires International Film Festival (Bafici) will stretch from the 10 venues of Village Recoleta to two more venues at Village Caballito, plus traditional venues such as Centro Cultural San Martín, Malba Cine, the Planetarium, Fundación Proa, and Arte Multiplex Belgrano.
Adding to these venues, the amphitheatre in Parque Centenario will host the free-admission screenings of the “Bafici Outdoors” programme. Moviegoers should also pin Centro Cultural Recoleta on their Bafici map, as a rather generous series of free screenings will be hosted at Sala Cronopios. Several graphic and audiovisual exhibits have been announced in different venues in Recoleta.
In addition to the International Competition (including 18 films from a wide array of countries), and the Argentine Competition (15 films), moviegoers will be treated to the Avant-Garde & Gender programme (27 films), as well as the Shorts and Human Rights films programme. For the younger audience, the festival presents Baficito, with an agenda including the exclusive pre-releases of Muppets 2 — Most Wanted and Rio 2, and a promising retrospective of the praiseworthy work of legendary animation studios UPA (United Productions of America).
Given the year’s special focus on the incoming Soccer World Cup, the festival delivers a special section called “Sportivo BAFICI,” featuring tributes to sports films by Denmark’s Jørgen Leth, as well as new productions such as Head Games: The Global Concussion Crisis (by Steve James, whose masterpiece Hoop Dreams will also screen at Bafici) or The Second Game (award-winning Romanian director Corneliu Porumboiu’s latest film) and also more classical entries such as El crack (José Martínez Suárez), El campo de los sueños (Phil Alden Robinson), The Jericho Mile (Michael Mann) and Ciudad dorada (John Huston). The wide variety of emotions associated with sports as well as many big and small names (from Niki Lauda, James Hunt, Pelé, the Maracana Stadium or RingoBonavena, to the grandparents who cheer themselves up by hitting a ping-pong ball) will be the stars of this section.
This year’s edition brings Israel as invited country, with an opening feature by Ari Folman (The Congress) and a retrospective of filmmaker/actor turned Rabbi Uri Zohar. Bafici also includes retrospectives of the works of Brazil’s Cao Guimarães and B films virtuoso Frank Henenlotter. Argentine filmmakers will also feature in this edition’s retrospectives programme, with Golden Age director Carlos Schlieper. This section includes, as expected, a selection of films remembering Worldr War I, 100 years on.
International guests include Israeli director Nadav Lapid (winner of the 14th edition and member of the International Competition jury this year), Brazilian filmmaker and visual artist Cao Guimarães (also a member of the Argentine Competition’s jury), and Austrian video artist Michaela Grill (featured with a short films selection in the Panorama section). For the Retrospectives programme, quite a few of the honoured artists have accepted the invitation to Bafici, including Portugal’s Rita Azevedo Gómez, Swiss director Jean-Stéphane Bron and US filmmaker Frank Henenlotter. Tee Bosustow, the son of UPA founder Stephen Bosustow, will present the section honouring the iconic animation studios included in the Baficito.
The Bafici also features a music section, including special entries, such as Michael Radford’s Michel Petrucciani, focusing on the legendary jazz pianist, Ricardo Pachón’s exploration of Seville gipsy music in Triana, pura y pura, Martín Turnes’ portrait of iconic bandoneon virtuoso Aníbal Troilo in Pichuco — this year also marks Troilo’s centennial — and Conexión Sur by Dolores Lagrange, who probes the world of Buenos Aires electronic music.
A special tribute will be made to British label Warp Films at this year’s Bafici, including several films by renowned director Shane Meadows — such as The Stone Roses: Made of Stone, focusing on the return of Ian Brown’s band, and This Is England, featuring a group of skinheads in the Thatcher era. This section also includes Richard Ayoade’s Submarine, with music by Alex Turner from the Arctic Monkeys.
For those who haven’t secured their tickets yet, the general admission fee is 26 pesos, and 20 pesos for seniors and students. The screenings and events scheduled at the amphitheatre of Parque Centenario, Centro Cultural Recoleta and Fundación Universidad del Cine (Pasaje J. M. Giuffra 330), are free of charge: admission is on first in-first served basis and subject to capacity.
Must see tomorrow
11.30 Village Recoleta 9
The Great Illusion / La grande illusion (1937, France, 114 min)
By Jean Renoir. With Jean Gabin, Marcel Dalio, Erich von Stroheim
13.20 Village Caballito 7
Stray Dogs (2013, Taiwan/ France, 138 min)
By Tsai Ming Liang. With: Shiang-chyi Chen, Kang-sheng Lee, Yi Cheng Lee
16.30 Arte Multiplex Belgrano 3
Omar (2013, Palestine, 97 min)
By Hany Abu-Assad. With: Adam Bakri, Leem Lubany, Iyad Hoorani
18.00 Village Caballito 7
Ilo ilo (2013, Singapore, 99 min)
By Anthony Chen. With: Koh Jia Ler, Angeli Bayani, Tian Wen Chen
22.35 Village Recoleta 9
Jules and Jim (1962, France, 105 min)
By François Truffaut. With: Jeanne Moreau, Oskar Werner, Henri Serre.