Film Fest Gent
October 13-24, 2015, Ghent, Belgium
What’s It All About?
Film Fest Gent is Belgium’s most prominent annual film event. Launched in 1974 as a students’ film festival, it has developed into one of Europe’s foremost film events. Every year in October, the festival presents 80-odd features and 50 shorts from across the world, attracting over 1,30,000 viewers every year. With its focus on film music, the festival has its own unique place on the international film festival circuit.
Every year, the festival organises film music concerts, giving composers of film scores the platform they deserve. Varietycalled the festival one of the 50 ‘must-attend fests’, and The Wall Street Journal catalogues it among the five European ‘fests with character’. Film Fest Gent is a competitive festival, focusing on ‘The Impact of Music on Film’ at which some 15 feature fiction films compete for two prizes. The competing films are viewed by an international jury, which will pick out two films for the following prizes:
The Grand Prix for the Best Film and The George Delerue Award for Best Music (Best Application of Music or Sound Design).
The 42nd Film Fest Gent will once again include a wide choice of films from all over the world, mainly focusing on fiction films (long and short) and, to a lesser extent, to documentary (mainly focusing on music- or film-linked themes). Animation is also included.
This year, historical drama Chauthi Koot – The Fourth Direction is one of the official selections for Global Cinema. The Punjabi film is about a farmer who is told he has to kill the family dog. Five months later, two Hindu friends are trying to get to Amritsar. These two incidents are connected by the theme of ordinary people trapped between the excesses of the Army and the militant movement for a separate Sikh nation.
Watch Out For
Robert Zemeckis’ forthcoming thriller The Walk, starring Joseph Gordon-Levitt as Philippe Petit, the charismatic high-wire artist who unforgettably traversed the Twin Towers in 1974, will pre-open the festival.
The 42nd edition of Film Fest Gent will open with Robin Pront’s debut film The Ardennes in which a brutal home jacking goes hopelessly wrong. Dave, one of the two robbers, manages to run off, leaving his brother Kenneth behind. Four years later, Kenneth is released from prison but a lot has changed over time. Dave has his life back on track and is trying to
help Kenneth wherever possible but it’s not easy.
Some films to be screened
The High Sun
The Diary Of A Teenage Girl
The Green Inferno
The Smell Of Us
The Royal Road
Closing Night Film
Whitey Bulger, played by Johnny Depp, used to be an Irish mafia boss who worked for the FBI as an informant for 30 years. During the ‘70s, he grew up in Boston as the black sheep of an Irish-American family. Over time, the Machiavelli-quoting psychopath became the most powerful and notorious criminal in the history of Boston.
Talk: Sir Alan Parker
British director Alan Parker will be presiding over the international jury during the festival. Before the talk, Parker’s 1978 film Midnight Express will be screened. The film, which also won the Oscar for screenplay by Oliver Stone, tells the true story of Billy Hayes, an American college student who is caught smuggling drugs out of Turkey and thrown into prison.