For our celebratory 50th edition, we present a special edition of our trademark Bright Future programme. Each of our feature film programmers has selected one debut film, creating a diverse lineup made up of fresh new film talent and discoveries for the future.
Bright Future announces six world premieres, including Damascus Dreams by Montreal-based visual artist and filmmaker Émilie Serri. In the poetic essay film on Syria, Serri links the reminiscences of refugees to her family history. Slovenian mountain-set BERG by the Dutch theatre and filmmaker Joke Olthaar is a highly aesthetic landscape experience, shot in black and white. The film’s spiritual charge is further evoked by its minimalist soundscape, composed of a symphony of natural forces. Belgian artist, musician and filmmaker Bram Droulers presents Phoenix, a freewheeling film that celebrates sexual and stylistic fluidity.
There are also world premieres for Estonian director Leri Matehha’s German drama, Thomas der Hochspringer, an alienating tragicomic film about a lonely young athlete, and Chinese documentary filmmaker and photographer Wang Qiong’s seven-year autobiographical project All About My Sisters.
Detectives hunt a murderous robot in OK Computer by Indian filmmakers Pooja Shetty and Neil Pagedar, a six-part science fiction comedy which takes some serious swipes at the dangers of artificial intelligence. Artist and IFFR-regular Fern Silva is selected for his Hawaii-set essay film Rock Bottom Riser, following a lengthy career in the IFFR short programme for his renowned experimental works which began with Notes from a Bastard Child at IFFR 2008 and most recently with The Watchmen in IFFR 2017.
Selection of film stills of Bright Future 2021
Film Still: All About My Sisters
Film Still: BERG
Film Still: Damascus Dreams
Film Still: OK Computer
Film Still: Phoenix
Film Still: Rock Bottom Riser
Film Still: The Son
Film Still: Thomas der Hochspringer
Bright Future selection
- All About My Sisters, Wang Qiong, 2021, USA, world premiere
- BERG, Joke Olthaar, 2021, Netherlands, world premiere
- Damascus Dreams, Émilie Serri, 2021, Canada, world premiere
- The Day Is Over, Qi Rui, 2021, China, European premiere
- Faya Dayi, Jessica Beshir, 2021, Ethiopia/USA/Qatar
- A felicidade das coisas, Thais Fujinaga, 2021, Brazil, world premiere
- Lumina, Samuele Sestieri, 2021, Italy, world premiere
- OK Computer, Pooja Shetty/Neil Pagedar, 2020, India
- Phoenix, Bram Droulers, 2021, Belgium/France/UK, world premiere
- Rock Bottom Riser, Fern Silva, 2021, USA
- The Son, Noushin Meraji, 2021, Iran
- A Story of Southern Islet, Chong Keat Aun, 2020, Malaysia, European premiere
- Thomas der Hochspringer, Leri Matehha, 2020, Germany, international premiere
- Woodlands Dark and Days Bewitched: a History of Folk Horror, Kier-La Janisse, 2021, USA