Wilfried de Jong’s IFFR tips

What are festival insiders, tastemakers and creatives most looking forward to at this edition of IFFR? We asked theatre-maker, journalist and writer Wilfried de Jong, familiar to Dutch audiences from TV shows such as Zomergasten, 24 uur met…  and Holland Sport. He has also presented IFFR’s talkshows in the Schouwburg for many years. He’s now returned to the theatre after a twenty-year hiatus with ‘Waardenberg en De Jong’.

Crash with Live Score by Rotterdam Philharmonic Orchestra
An exclusive screening of David Cronenberg's cult film Crash – with the Rotterdam Philharmonic Orchestra.

“An ‘oldie’ from director David Cronenberg, who I was introduced to through his ‘freaky’ cult film Naked Lunch. In Crash, cars play a lead role. Crashed cars. With Cronenberg, things are never just things: he always makes them really come alive. Typewriters with an anus, for example. Weird, and alienating. At this screening the score will even be played live by the Rotterdam Philharmonic Orchestra.”

Il colpo del cane by Fulvio Risuleo
Marti is pursuing a thief who's stolen the dog she is sitting, but it turns out he too has his problems.

“I’ve always had a weakness for Italian cinema. The acting, the commedia dell’arte, the beauty, the framing, the absurdity. When I hear that director Fulvio Risuleo has someone looking after a pug, which then is the victim of a dognapping, the images really start to stack up in my mind.”


Living the Light – Robby Müller
Portrait of Dutch cameraman Robby Müller (1940 - 2018) with beautiful material from his personal archive and scenes from the films he shot.

“Light comes in thousands of guises. You can spend a lifetime playing with it, and never get bored. This is exactly what cameraman Robby Müller did. He knew what to do with a 10KW film light, or worked with natural light reflecting on water. For example in his work on films by Jim Jarmusch and Wim Wenders. Now, there’s this documentary by Claire Pijman featuring lots of material from Müller’s own private archive.”

Mister Soul – A Story About Donny Hathaway by David Kleijwegt
Soul singer Donny Hathaway's life was intertwined with the American civil rights movement: his suffering is his generation's.

“When it comes to sublime vocals, in my opinion Donny Hathaway blows all the other men in the soul world out of the water. Sorry Marvin, sorry Stevie. His reedy, emotional sound effortlessly penetrates your chest and goes straight to your heart. When he was at the height of his powers, black Americans were fighting for their rights. Director David Kleijwegt is a lover of all good music, and in this film always hits the right note; atmospheric, committed and boldly edited.”

Photo in header: Wilfried de Jong © Lenny Oosterwijk (flipped horizontally)