The 25th edition of the International Critics’ Week at the 67th Venice Film Festival has announced the seven world premiere titles in competition. All films are debut features.
The line up offers a more geographically rich offering than in recent years. Titles hail from the Mediterranean countries of Greece, Slovenia, Israel, France and Italy and accompanied by works from the farther flung territories of Mexico, Sweden and the Philippines.
The section opens with a re-visit of Carlo Mazzacurati’s 1987 debut, a thriller entitled Notte Italiana as special event. The closing film, out of competition, will be Limbunan about young women trapped by traditionally imposed arranged marriages from Philippine director Gutierrez Mangansakan II.
Films this year reflect themes of global and individual crisis as well as family themes, the organisers pointed out.
Pernilla August, who won the best acting prize at Cannes in 1993 for The Best Intentions brings her directorial debut Beyond based on the best-selling Swedish novel Svinalangorna by Susanna Alakoski. The story follows a young woman’s struggle to get past her dramatic childhood; it stars Noomi Rapace of The Millennium Trilogy fame.
Moving South to Mexico, Martha, from Marcelino Islas Hernandez, tells the story of a septuagenarian who feels useless in the computer age.
Italy’s Indigo Film brings Massimo Coppola’s Hai Paura Del Buio, set in a Fiat factory. Greece offers Hora Proelefsis (Mother Earth) from Syllas Tzumerkas that touches on the individuals who are impacted by the financial dow turn; French-Israeli co production Hitparzut X is a love triangle story which turns criminal from Eitan Zur whose Israeli TV series Be Tipul was picked up by HBO and successfully adapted to the show In Treatment for US audiences.
Slovenian director Vlado Skafar’s Oka is a lyrical father-and-son story set in an era when the country is still recovering from war, while France’s Alix Delaporte brings Angele et Tony, a love story set against the struggling Normandy fishing industry. Delaporte’s 2006 short Comment On Freine Dans Una Descente? took the top prize in the category from Venice
The debut titles are eligible to compete for Venice’s Luigi De Laurentiis “Lion of the Future” award for first works that comes with $100,000 in prize money as well as for the International Film Critics’ Week Regione del Veneto Award that carries a $6,400 (Euros 5,000) prize.
The selectors include Francesco Di Pace, Goffredo De Pascale, Anton Giulio Mancino, Cristiana Paterno and Angela Prudenzi.
The Venice Film Festival runs Sept 1-11.