IFFR in cinemas

11 October 2023

Drawing Lots


IFFR in cinemas

11 October 2023

From the festival to the cinema screen, find out which IFFR titles can be seen in theatres now.

New releases 

Drawing Lots, Zaza Khalvashi, Tamta Khalvashi, 2023, Georgia, Lithuania 

Neighbours, lovers, strangers, criminals, or none of the above – ambiguity abounds in veteran Georgian filmmaker Zaza Khalvashi’s quirky parable of a seaside community and the games they play with one another.

Il Boemo, Petr Václav, 2022, Czech Republic, Slovakia, Italy

A luxuriant biopic of eighteenth-century Czech musician Josef Mysliveček that chronicles his culture shocks, sizzling affairs and beautiful friendships on his quest to make it as an opera composer in cut-throat, cosmopolitan Italy. 

Medusa Deluxe, Thomas Hardiman, 2022, United Kingdom

When a participant is found gruesomely murdered at a hairdressing competition, the community turns against each other as they tease out the likely culprit. Thomas Hardiman’s debut feature, shot in a faux single-take, is a deliciously campy, infinitely quotable dive into the acidic world of hair obsession.

Letzter Abend, Lukas Nathrath, Germany, 2023

A young couple eager to celebrate their last evening in town plan a casual party. A few guests don’t come, unexpected visitors fill the place, and the night turns crazy and tense. Prime chamber cinema: performance-centred, dialogue-dense, and always behind its characters, right or wrong.

Als uw gat maar lacht (If Yes, Okay), Dick Verdult, Netherlands, 2023

Amy yearns to break away from the gilded cage that her eccentric billionaire parents have built for her. To regain control, she fictionalises her life in an absurd Kabuki show that mocks her self-absorbed family.

Luka, Jessica Woodworth, 2023, Belgium, Italy, Netherlands, Bulgaria, Armenia 

To protect his homeland from ever-imminent invasion, Luka makes the lengthy trek to Fort Kairos, an outpost where the fear of an attack that never seems to come by an enemy that perhaps does not exist has morphed into a sort of serene paranoia.

Numb, Amir Toodehroosta, 2023, Iran

Life outside kindergarten is not all it seems in this coming-of-age drama, nominated for a Tiger Award. Six-year-old Roham’s time in class appears idyllic, but gradually the restrictive surroundings and distressing discoveries about his fellow pupils shake his innocent world forever.

Safe Place, Juraj Lerotić, 2022, Croatia

The ironically titled Safe Place shows the crisis within a Croatian family triggered by a suicide attempt. Its focus is less on psychological diagnosis than the coldness of the institutions ‘processing’ individuals. An impressive debut feature by Juraj Lerotić, shifting between realism and reflexivity.

Coming soon

Past & present 

Anatomy of Time, Jakrawal Nilthamrong, 2021, Thailand, France, Singapore, Netherlands 

Maem falls in love with an army officer during the military dictatorship in 1960s Thailand. The woman’s life story meanders between past and present, in sync with developments in a country torn apart by political power struggles.

Aftersun, Charlotte Wells, 2022, United States, United Kingdom

Sophie and her father Calum spend their summer vacation at a Turkish resort. The preteen enjoys her father’s warm company, but it may be Calum who needs Sophie more in this delicate and deeply felt remembrance of a brief period from childhood.


Blind Willow Sleeping WomanPierre Földes, 2022, France, Canada, Luxembourg, Netherlands

Failing marriages and dead-end jobs may be the stuff of kitchen sink realism, but they become occasions for life-altering encounters with dreams, fantasies and fevered visions in Pierre Földes’ beguiling animated feature based on short stories by Haruki Murakami.


The Blue Caftan, Maryam Touzani, 2022, Morocco, Belgium, Denmark, France

When master tailor Halim, a closeted gay man, and his ailing wife Mina hire a young apprentice at their clothing store, the unvoiced tensions in their relationship come out in the open.

Blue Jean, Georgia Oakley, 2022, United Kingdom

Northern England, 1988. Margaret Thatcher’s Conservative government is introducing the now-notorious Section 28. Closeted gym teacher Jean has been balancing her personal and working life accordingly until a new girl at school risks the collision of Jean’s worlds.

Cairo Conspiracy, Tarik Saleh, 2022, Sweden, France, Finland, Denmark

The election of a new grand imam turns Egypt’s venerable Al-Azhar University into a hornet’s nest of political intrigue, with the intelligence agency trying to subvert and manipulate the process. A tense, fast-paced thriller.

Copenhagen Does Not Exist, Martin Skovbjerg, 2023, Denmark

Ida vanishes without a trace. When she doesn't return, her father has a strange idea: he retreats with her partner for a long talk. A psychological thriller of the cat and mouse variety that on closer inspection reveals itself as a coolly existentialist study on the limits of (com)passion.

Dalva, Emmanuelle Nicot, 2022, Belgium, France

This feature debut by Belgian filmmaker and writer Emmanuelle Nicot is a reverse coming-of-age story: 12-year-old Dalva is abruptly taken from her father to begin the pivotal journey of reclaiming her youth.

DEPOT - Reflecting BoijmansSonia Herman Dolz, 2023, Netherlands

Unconventional portrait of the construction of Depot Boijmans Van Beuningen, the world's first museum depot entirely open to visitors. Witness architect Winy Maas and museum director Sjarel Ex realising this dream. Footage from Bouw Museum Boymans is also featured, to draw parallels with the past.

EO, Jerzy Skolimowski, 2022, Poland, Italy

A humble donkey wanders through the forest, villages and cities of Europe, meeting people good and bad, and finally, his fate. A paean to cinema as a space of freedom and longing, aesthetically unpredictable, full of jest and tragedy. Three brays for Eo!


The Eternal Daughter, Joanna Hogg, 2022, United Kingdom, United States

The mother-and-daughter characters from Hogg’s The Souvenir films reappear – both incarnated by Tilda Swinton. A hotel setting suggests the atmosphere of horror movies, but the mystery element is subtle and poetic. The film’s heart is the tender but complex bond between the women.

In cinemas from 22 June 

A House in Jerusalem, Muayad Alayan, 2023, Palestine, United Kingdom, Germany, Netherlands, Qatar

Following her mother's accidental death, Rebecca moves with her father to her grandfather's home in Jerusalem. Despite her father's admonitions, Rebecca clings to the memories of her mother until, one day, she discovers another girl of her age living in the house.

LOLA, Andrew Legge, 2022, Ireland, United Kingdom

What if you could change the future – but discover that you erased David Bowie? Andrew Legge’s directorial feature debut is an inspired punk-feminist time travel conceit, melding imagined audio-visual documents from wartime 1940s into a fable about history, politics and resistance.

Die middag, Nafiss Nia, 2023, Netherlands

An Iranian refugee arrives at a woman's apartment seeking help. Instead, she finds a man who won't let her in, but with whom she starts to have a conversation. A film about walls and boundaries, culture and language, and the politics of intimacy and salvation.

Munch, Henrik M. Dahlsbakken, 2023, Norway

Not your usual artist biopic, Munch is a kaleidoscopic essay on the many meanings of Edvard Munch’s life and art for his own era, and the future, with several actors portraying him. A staggering mix of classical cinema and formal experiment – the perfect opening film for IFFR 2023!

Pacifiction, Albert Serra, 2022, France, Spain, Germany, Portugal 

“Politics is like a nightclub”, and so is Albert Serra’s latest film, a moody, dreamlike tale of colonial power and politics in present-day French Polynesia, starring Benoît Magimel. Evoking a decadent regime in decline, this superbly shot mystery tantalises with hints of violence and conspiracy.

INU-OHYuasa Masaaki, 2021, Japan

Two outcast musicians in 14th century Japan team up to sing about forgotten episodes of history. Their thunderous, transgressive performances leave the population spellbound but also draw the ire of the authorities and tradition-keepers.

Goodbye Stranger, Aaron Rookus, 2023, Netherlands

A successful playlist curator for a music-streaming service, Paul is pretty sure he's about to land a major promotion. But when the boss decides to consider another candidate, Paul finds himself analysing the life and career choices he has made.

Kung Fu Leeuw, Froukje Tan, 2023, Netherlands

Jimmy practices kung fu. For the lion dance, he is determined to hold the lion's head. But first, he needs to overcome himself (and a few bullies). In Kung fu leeuw we learn the challenges of growing up are easier to face when you’re armed with martial arts wisdom.



No Dogs or Italians Allowed, Alain Ughetto, 2022, France, Italy, Belgium, Switzerland, Portugal 

Ughetto's second feature is a fond family chronicle told in painstaking, inventive stop-motion animation, using puppets and crafted objects. Surrealism (broccoli stands in for trees and sugar cubes represent bricks) interweaves with 20th century events in this real-life tale of cross-cultural migration. 

Un petit frère, Léonor Serraille, 2022, France

Rose has emigrated from the Ivory Coast to France with her two sons. A caring mother, she motivates them to make the best of their lives, but her own search for love bears down on the boys, who hurtle into adulthood in contrasting ways.

Saint Omer, Alice Diop, 2022, France 

Laurence Coly admits to drowning her baby, but pleads ‘not guilty’ in court. Perplexed by this contradiction, novelist Rama attends Laurence’s trial, but what she experiences begins to shake the foundations of her own life.

Superposition, Karoline Lyngbye, 2023, Denmark

Urban artists and intellectuals Stine and Teit leave Copenhagen for the wilds of neighbouring Sweden’s forest. In the woods, they come across their mirror images. An icily detached metaphysical thriller that dissects one of our culture’s most revered notions: that of uniqueness.

WICKED GAMES Rimini Sparta, Ulrich Seidl, 2023, Austria, Germany, France

A combined version of Ulrich Seidl's Rimini and Sparta that finds unexpected dimensions in the stories of Richie, a crooner past his prime, and his younger brother Ewald, who's wrestling with his pedophile desires. A more cerebral while disconsolate, richer yet heartbroken project.

The Whale, Darren Aronofsky, 2022, United States

In Darren Aronofsky’s latest film, Brendan Fraser gives an exceptional performance as a man living with extreme obesity and helpless grief in a remote house in Idaho, whose life takes a turn after a series of seemingly random visitors coalesce into a force of compassion.


Film still: INU-OH

Film still: Saint Omer

Film still: EO

Film still: aftersun

Film still: Blind Willow, Sleeping Woman

Film still: Dalva

DEPOT - Reflecting Boijmans

Film still: Die Middag

Film still: Goodbye Stranger

Kung Fu Leeuw

Film still: The Blue Caftan

Film still: The Whale

Other blog posts on IFFR 2023