17th Berwick Film & Media Arts Festival 2021

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9 – 12 September 2021

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BFMAF’s 2021 Call for Entries has now closed. Thanks to all who entered, we will let you know about the selection status of your film by the 9th of August.

Check 2020’s 16th BFMAF and all the accompanying recordings, essays, and podcasts below, still there for you to enjoy!

Introduction

Ayo Akingbade

Ayo Akingbade

Introduction

Payal Kapadia

Afternoon Clouds

With Afternoon Clouds, Payal Kapadia fosters a poetic world within a beautifully simple scenario. In a Bombay apartment, 70-year-old widow Kati and her Nepali maid Mati cook together, conversing while beholding a flower which only blooms for two days.

Payal Kapadia

Payal Kapadia

And What is the Summer Saying

Payal Kapadia’s most recent film defies easy description. The question posed by the film’s title—and spoken enigmatically by one of the film’s subjects—is answered through the intricate tapestry of sound wedded together by Kapadia into a rich collage.

Payal Kapadia

Angelo Madsen Minax

New Cinema Competition

At Those Terrifying Frontiers Where the Existence and Disappearance of People Fade Into Each Other SDH Captions

In consultation with Abbas and Abou-Rahme, Only the Beloved Keeps Our Secrets, a second work was chosen to accompany At Those Terrifying Frontiers Where the Existence and Disappearance. Taking the opportunity given by an online Festival, it was felt that this strategy might better simulate the artists’ performance, installation and exhibition making practice for viewers.

Only the Beloved Keeps Our Secrets
Basel Abbas, Ruanne Abou-Rahme

Introduction

Angelo Madsen Minax

At the River

It is the 4th of July in rural middle America and the water levels are rising. The filmmaker’s religious family stage a half-hearted intervention with their adult child.

Angelo Madsen Minax

Ayo Akingbade

Ayo Akingbade

In her own words, Ayo Akingbade’s work “addresses notions of urbanism, power and stance”. Characteristic of her films is a contemplation and celebration of the rhythms of everyday London life, as well as the histories and legacies that move through it.

Introduction

Izza Génini

Aïta

Fatna Bent El Hocine and her group of female troubadours travel through Morocco singing songs of aïta—a trance-like call and response, bringing to life tales from Morocco’s history. Génini shows the singers in moments of fantasia and celebration, but also in intimate camaraderie and reflection.

Izza Génini

Live Event

10 October 2020, 22:00

Essential Cinema

Badnam Basti

Briefly released in 1971 and subsequently lost for decades until its rediscovery in 2019, Badnam Basti is the debut feature of Indian New Wave filmmaker Prem Kapoor. His artfully hewn, musical melodrama, an adaptation of Kamleshwar Prasad Saxenaa’s eponymous novel, traces a circular relationship between its three main characters: dashing truck driver bandit Sarnam, the lovely Bansuri who he saves from being raped and handsome Shivraj, who works in a temple is later hired by Sarnam.

Prem Kapoor

Introduction

Introduction

Angelo Madsen Minax

Because of Us

A voice guides us through a near-death experience. She begins by describing the experience as a sensation of viewing, similar to watching a movie. Found footage and animated skyscapes create a cosmology of connections.

Angelo Madsen Minax

Berwick Young Filmmakers

Berwick Young Filmmakers 2020

Everyday Apocalypse is a new short film made by four local young people, developed in collaboration with artist Kimberley O’Neill, exploring our shared experiences of lockdown. Over a three week period in August, the group met via Zoom to share stories and develop the film.

Everyday Apocalypse

Ayo Akingbade

Claudette’s Star

In Claudette’s Star, Ayo Akingbade recreates and documents her subjects’ encounters with art, literature and the “canon.” A commune between young artists and artistic legacies, that looks towards the future.

Claudette’s Star
Ayo Akingbade

Introduction

Introduction

New Cinema Competition Features

Desterro SDH Captions

Laura and Israël are a couple in their mid-thirties who are almost entirely linked to life and each other by their five-year-old son, Lucas. As the days go by, they fulfil their roles as partners, parents and adults in contemporary Brazil.

Maria Clara Escobar

Introduction

New Cinema Competition

Don’t Rush SDH Captions

Three young men—two brothers and their cousin—meet on a dense summer night to feel the “high” of a dozen “Hasiklidika” songs; Rebetiko songs from the beginning of the 20th century which celebrate the effects of Hashish.

Don't Rush
Elise Florenty, Marcel Türkowsky

Essential Cinema

Don’t Cry, Pretty Girls!

An eccentric gang of young boys and girls hit the streets and bars of Budapest after their monotonous shift in the factory has ended. Living within and out of society, but closed in their private life, they seek intimacy, entertainment and freedom.

Márta Mészáros

Enceindre

Live Event

7 October 2020, 20:00

Live Event

11 October 2020, 15:00

Live Event

24 September 2020, 20:00

Previews

Tim Leyendekker

Live Event

17 September 2020, 20:00

Live Event

22 September 2020, 20:00

Live Event

6 October 2020, 20:00

Live Event

26 September 2020, 17:00

Angelo Madsen Minax

Forward into the Afternoon

After a road trip to the ocean a figure communes with stray dogs to build seaside graveyard—petite and monumental sand mountains. She nourishes the sand graves with fresh breast milk.

Angelo Madsen Minax

New Cinema Competition

Fuel SDH Captions

“Give me fuel, give me fire, give me that which I desire.” Yu Araki’s enticing short film is a measured double portrait, firstly of a place—the Kushiro Robata restaurant in Hokkaido, northern Japan—as well as a person, the expert griller who slow cooks food at the centre of the restaurant over a bed of glowing orange charcoal.

Yu Araki

Izza Génini

Propositions

Kat Anderson: Restraint Restrained SDH Captions

Artist and filmmaker Kat Anderson presents the world festival premiere of ‘Restraint Restrained’. The programme features two films from Anderson’s first solo exhibition. The works draw on the experiences and narratives of the many mentally ill Black people who have met their deaths in police custody or mental health facilities, through excessive restraint holds and other violent and negligent behaviours.

John
Roundtable Conversation
Kat Anderson

Introduction

New Cinema Competition

LIQUID STRANGER SDH Captions

A knife suspended in the air, a PVC trench coat, a slick of red lipstick and multiple stories of murder and obsession all become signifying agents in this camp mash-up of language, narrative and performance.

Stefan Ramírez Pérez

Introduction

New Cinema Competition

Marriage Story SDH Captions

An auto-fiction under the eyes of a female Christ, a marriage as a step into the forbidden land of the holy, a lesbian poem in the language of the divine, a paean to the color red, the world’s slowest rave.

Jessica Dunn Rovinelli

Angelo Madsen Minax

My Most Handsome Monster

From vast, mystical, and historically charged landscapes, My Most Handsome Monster documents two separate BDSM scenarios as they unfold between queer sex workers and their play partners.

Angelo Madsen Minax

Introduction

N.P

New Cinema Competition Features

N.P

Based on the 1990 experimental novel by Japanese author Banana Yoshimioto, Lisa Spilliaert’s feature debut N.P is a silent film translation of the text into a cinematic scenario. Translation itself is at the heart of N.P’s narrative, which details the compilations and absurdities of protagonist Kazami’s attempts to translate the short stories of fictional author Sarao Takase, as well as her sometimes disturbing interactions with the late author’s children.

Lisa Spilliaert

Ayo Akingbade

No News Today

Akingbade’s trilogy of films act as an ode to her cinematic project on social housing, tied together through an interweaving of archive, fiction, 16mm film, digital, activism and dreams.

Tower XYZ
Street 66
Dear Babylon
Ayo Akingbade

Introduction

Introduction

Angelo Madsen Minax

No Show Girls

Originally created for installation viewing, No Show Girls documents an encounter between the artist and his friend, who performs a strip tease in silence adhering to specific instructions.

Angelo Madsen Minax

Introduction

Essential Cinema

Paris Calligrammes

In a rich torrent of archival audio and visuals, paired with extracts from her own artworks and films, Ottinger resurrects the old Saint-Germain-des-Prés and Latin Quarter. Amongst their literary cafés and jazz clubs, she revisits encounters with Jewish exiles; life with her artistic community; the world views of Parisian ethnologists and philosophers; the political upheavals of the Algerian War and May 1968; and the legacy of the colonial era.

Ulrike Ottinger

New Cinema Competition

Patrick SDH Captions

Patrick is made entirely from 16mm film and sound recordings produced during a residency at Headlands Centre for the arts, Marin County. The film focuses on the life and work of Patrick Cowley; a singular producer of dance music who pioneered the hi-NRG “San Francisco Sound” in the late 1970s.

Luke Fowler

Introduction

Payal Kapadia

Live Event

10 October 2020, 15:00

Live Event

1 October 2020, 20:00

Live Event

3 October 2020, 15:00

Propositions

Renèe Helèna Browne SDH Captions

In Daddy’s Boy, Renèe Helèna Browne creates an intimate portrait of their Irish homeland, documenting their father as he undertakes tasks around the house and on a rural farm. Browne’s voice-over draws the viewer in as a confidante, introducing elements of narrative from the 1990 sci-fi Jurassic Park and using the character of T-Rex to explore patriarchal dynamics, gender conformity and societal expectations.

Daddy's Boy
Renèe Helèna Browne

Introduction

Izza Génini

Return to Oulad Moumen

Return to Oulad Moumen follows the Edery family as they migrate from Oulad Moumen—south of Marrakech—to Paris over a number of years. As children are born, raised and leave home, life continues in Morocco and Génini contextualises the circumstances of her family’s departure in the social and political history of the country.

Izza Génini

Introduction

Izza Génini

Rhythms of Marrakech

In Marrakech, musicians gather to play together, bringing a new tempo to the city. As groups of men and women play these devotional songs to celebrate the birth of Prophet Mohammed, the city thrums with the sound of drums, cymbals and neffar and voices singing in unison.

Izza Génini

Introduction

Ayo Akingbade

So They Say

Set between East London in the 1980s and the present day, So They Say is a tribute to anti-racist activism, exploring in particular the work and legacy of the Newham Monitoring Project. The NMP, a grassroots community organisation by and for black and asian residents, set up local structures, support and legal aid in response to a violent time characterised by increasingly prominent far-right groups like the National Front, as well as widespread racism in the police.

Ayo Akingbade

New Cinema Competition

The Cypress Dance

Though one could argue that all the work of artistic duo Mariana Caló & Francisco Queimadela has been invested in bending and folding reality into something unreal, The Cypress Dance stands as their furthest descent into narrative filmmaking and cinéma fantastique.

Mariana Caló, Francisco Queimadela

Introduction

Angelo Madsen Minax

The Eddies

A death and destruction-obsessed transsexual searches for human connection in the humid Southern underground worlds of internet hook-ups and storm tunnels.

Angelo Madsen Minax

Payal Kapadia

The Last Mango Before the Monsoon

Elliptical sequences combine to form a filmic tone poem: the expanded sense of time during a rural summer dusk; the trudging of two scientists who place cameras in the forest for animal observation; watercolours that float atop the landscape; a woman yearning for her late husband.

Payal Kapadia

Essential Cinema

Maria Saakyan

Introduction

New Cinema Competition

The Name I Call Myself SDH Captions

Rejecting a catch-all definition of blackness while cast across two-screens, The Name I Call Myself unpicks multifaceted LGBTQ identities within the local black British diaspora. References to Audre Lorde and W.E.B.

Rhea Dillon

Angelo Madsen Minax

The Source Is a Hole

A mystical voice contemplates mythology, science fiction, sexuality and death as a series of holes: through which to travel, through which to perceive, through which to accept, through which to speak.

Angelo Madsen Minax

Introduction

New Cinema Competition

The Unseen River SDH Captions

Following on from his widely screened and hugely accomplished 2019 short Blessed Land, Phạm Ngọc Lân’s The Unseen River cements the Vietnamese filmmaker’s place as one of the most bold and unique visionaries of contemporary new cinema.

Phạm Ngọc Lân

New Cinema Competition Features

The Year of the Discovery SDH Captions

In 1992,the Barcelona Olympic Games and the Seville Expo were held in Spain. However, in the south-eastern town Cartagena, the protests sparked by the industrial crisis became increasingly violent and resulted in a mass uprising that culminated in the burning of the Autonomous Community’s parliament.

Luis López Carrasco

Introduction

New Cinema Competition Features

This Is Not a Burial, It’s a Resurrection

Following the death of her only surviving relative, an elderly woman begins to make plans for her own funeral. Resistance and resentment build as her determination to be laid to rest in her ancestral home is disrupted by government plans to build a reservoir on the land.

This Is Not a Burial, It's a Resurrection
Lemohang Jeremiah Mosese

New Cinema Competition

This day won’t last SDH Captions

A day that could also be a life. A young man who could also be an older woman. A nightmare that could also be a dream. In Tunisia, while it could also be somewhere else: on the border between the necessity and the fear to make a film, the necessity and the fear for the revolution, This day won’t last is a cooperation with a distance.

This day won't last
Mouaad el Salem

Propositions

Tiffany Sia: Never Rest/Unrest

For this year’s Propositions strand, Berwick Film & Media Arts Festival is dedicating a focus to the diverse practice of Hong Kong writer, artist and filmmaker Tiffany Sia. Though the centre of this presentation is Never Rest/Unrest, Sia’s directorial debut and an urgent work that functions as creative reportage of the 2019 Hong Kong protests, the full range of work on view includes writing, collage and performance documentation, as well as a livestream discussion with Sia.

Never Rest/Unrest
Tiffany Sia

New Cinema Competition

Up at Night SDH Captions

In a Kishasha neighbourhood faced with near-constant power outages, residents find creative solutions to the lack of light. The promise of a consistent source of electricity is found in the construction of a hydropower scheme, long in development but not yet completed.

Nelson Makengo

Introduction

Izza Génini

Vibrations in Upper Atlas

Daily life in the Aït Bouguemez Valley is documented in this film by Izza Génini. Nestled in the Atlas mountains, the residents of this small village work the land in time with the natural rhythms of the landscape.

Izza Génini

New Cinema Competition

Way My It Did I SDH Captions

In the Port of Tilbury—a place which historically was the point of entry for migrants to the UK—filmmaker Maria Anastassiou worked collaboratively with a group of people who had recently arrived in the town to paint a portrait of life in the transient space of the Thames Estuary.

Maria Anastassiou

Introduction

Propositions

Zinzi Minott SDH Captions

Ancestral interference is the feeling of rage or anger bigger than your own rage, pain bigger than your own pain, it is the feeling of being tired of a fight you have only just begun. It is the feeling of being on the march forever, of screaming from a place deep inside that does not belong to you.

Fi Dem III
Zinzi Minott

New Cinema Competition Features

maɬni – towards the ocean, towards the shore

The feature film debut of prolific Ho-Chunk filmmaker Sky Hopinka, maɬni – towards the ocean, towards the shore extends the promise of his meticulously crafted, short form experimental documentaries, while at the same time pushing towards new ideas, expressions and forms.

Sky Hopinka

Introduction