Eighth European Psychoanalytic Film Festival 29 October – 1 November 2015, BAFTA London
(Nurith Aviv, 2013, France, 68’)
Announcements (Annonces) is a French documentary that explores words and images in both philosophical and religious contexts. Seven women respond to the theme of ‘announcements,’ taking as their cue the announcements to Hagar, Sarah and Mary in the Old Testament, New Testament, and Koran. In portrait-like interviews, the women reflect not only on universal topics, but also on personal anecdotes and private histories.
Showing at 10.20am on Saturday 31 October
The British Classic: The Browning Version
(Anthony Asquith, 1951, UK, 87’)
We are delighted to announce that our ‘British Classic’ screening for epff8 is Asquith’s 1951 The Browning Version. Based on the successful play by Terence Rattigan, and starring Michael Redgrave and Jean Kent, the picture won best screenplay and best actor at the 1951 Cannes Film Festival. The film tells the story of Andrew Crocker-Harris, a once brilliant scholar reduced to bitterness and pedantry in his role as a Classics teacher at a boys’ school. Loathed by his students and cuckolded by his wife, Andrew is serving his last day at the school due to ill health. However, an encounter with a sympathetic pupil causes him to re-evaluate his actions.
Showing at 8.30pm on Friday 30 October
In the Crosswind [Risttuules]
(Martti Helde, 2014, Estonia, 87’)
In the Crosswind is one of two Estonian films screening at epff8. The film focuses on the Soviets’ deportation of 40,000 Estonians, Lithuanians and Latvians from the Baltic region to Siberia in 1941. Central to the story is Erna, a married philosophy student who is herded onto a train and despatched to the remote area alongside her daughter, Eliide. Over fifteen years, Erna never gives up hope of returning to her home, and the film (beautifully shot in black and white) uses Erna’s experience to both formally and philosophically explore the passage and relativity of time.
Showing at 4.30pm on Saturday 31 October
(Arnon Goldfinger, 2011, Israel, 97’)
The second documentary entry in the epff8 programme is the remarkable story of Arnon Goldfinger’s family. The Flat won the Isreali Film Academy Best Documentary in 2011 and begins as a tribute to Goldfinger’s late grandmother, who passed away in Tel Aviv. However, while sorting through her possessions, his family discover evidence of his grandparents’ lasting friendship with Nazi SS officer Leopold von Mildenstein. Repulsed and confused by his findings, Goldfinger undertakes a journey into the past that attempts to make sense of his grandparents’ relationship both to von Mildenstein, and to history.
Showing at 4pm on Friday 30 October
Human Capital [Il capitale umano]
(Paolo Virzì, 2013, Italy 109’)
Adapted from the Stephen Amidon novel and transported from the USA to Italy, Human Capital offers a scathing class critique of contemporary Italian society. Winner of numerous awards, including Best Film at the 2014 Italian Golden Globes, the film opens as a cyclist is run off the road on Christmas Eve. In a series of chapters that take viewers back six months before the incident occurs, Human Capital focuses on three characters whose fates are intertwined by money, consumption and the human capacity for greed.
Showing at 10.50 on Friday 30 October
(Pawel Pawlikowski, 2013, Poland, 80’)
Ida, nominated for Best Foreign Language Film at the 2015 Academy Awards and BAFTAs, tells the story of Anna, a novice nun in 1960s Poland who is about to take her vows. Before doing so, she discovers that her real name is Anna Lebenstein and that her Jewish parents were killed during World War II. Anna also meets her aunt Wanda, a prosecutor who helped secure support for the communist regime in Poland after the war. The force of history upturns Anna’s ordered, if stark, world. She embarks on a journey to find her parents’ graves alongside Wanda, and in doing so makes a journey of self-discovery that affects both of their futures.
Showing at 4.10pm on Friday 30 October
(Andrey Zvyagintsev, 2014, Russia, 140’)
Set on the northwest coast of Russia, Academy Award and BAFTA-nominated Leviathan delves into the corruption and injustice that blights the lives of ordinary Russian people. When a corrupt local mayor orders the demolition of Nikolai’s house and business to take control of the land, Nikolai calls on a friend in Moscow to help save his family from ruin. However, their attempts are futile in the face of the ruling elite’s machinations. With its biblical overtones and depictions of class struggle, the Golden Globe winning film paints a bleak picture of life for the inhabitants of Russia’s peripheries.
Showing at 9am on Saturday 31 October
October November [Oktober November]
(Gotz Spielmann, 2013, Austria, 110’)
On learning that her ailing father is dying, successful Berlin-based television and film actress Sonja returns to her family home in small-town Austria. There, she is reunited for the first time in many years with her married sister Verena, who has devoted her life to caring for their sick father. Both sisters must contend not only with the resentment that they feel toward one another, but also with the despair and emptiness that each recognizes in the other.
Showing at 6.10pm on 31 October
(Uberto Pasolini, 2013, Italy/UK, 87’)
John is an obsessively organised council worker responsible for locating the next of kin when people die alone. In the rare cases that he cannot find family members, he arranges funerals and often attends as the sole mourner. Immersed in the processes of bereavement and death, John (Eddie Marsan, who won best British actor for the role at the 2013 Edinburgh International Film Festival) is out of step with the modern world. When he learns that his department is being downsized, a complex final case offers him an opportunity to reflect on how he lives his life.
Showing at 11.40am on Saturday 31 October
The Eighth Psychoanalytic Film Festival (epff8) will show ten extraordinary feature films that reflect the theme Turning Points: Individuals, Groups, Societies. The programme consists of pictures produced in countries including France, Russia and Estonia and that examine the lives of characters from tangerine farmers in Georgia to wealthy financiers in Italy. The Festival offers guests an excellent opportunity to watch some of the most exciting films in contemporary European cinema, including three nominees for the ‘Best Film in a Foreign Language’ prize at the 2015 Academy Awards.