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To ease navigation, our programmers divide the film programme into four sections with each their unique tone. Filter by section or read more.
Our main competitions and tomorrow’s film talent
Celebrating great storytelling and bold cinema
Retrospectives, film art and an in-depth look at filmmaking
Explore this year's theme programmes
Nothing StrangerPedro Collantes IFFR 2016 23′
Ling’s childhood friend Mei has died. Together with Mei’s sister, Ling visits the place Mei died - that lies in an imposing landscape - for the first time.
La noviaPaula Ortiz IFFR 2016 95′
A dazzling adaptation of Federico García Lorca’s play Blood Wedding. A bride must choose between her decent, rich fiancé and her childhood love, with fatal consequences. Beautiful images, vibrant Spanish music and all-consuming passion. With IFFR Live screening on Sun 31 Jan.
Nuestro marEileen Hofer IFFR 2016 15′
While a storm approaches Havana, Emilio and his neighbour Omara Portuondo talk about the past and dream of things out of reach.
OgasavaraVakhtang (Tato) Kotetishvili IFFR 2016 8′
Murad and Masha are getting married. But their romantic date dynamite fishing takes a surprising turn. A whimsical tale of love, death and stop-motion.
Les ogresLéa Fehner IFFR 2016 144′
There's drama aplenty for the travelling theatre company Chekhov Cabaret. The actors share the good times and the bad as a nomadic tribe where work and private life always mingle. They don’t mince words, these obstreperous actors with a sardonic sense of humour. Theatre always comes first.
Oleg y las raras artesAndrés Duque IFFR 2016 70′
The legendary Oleg Nikolaevitch Karavaychuk is the mysterious and moving subject of this loving film by the young director Duque. He was moved by the music the pianist composed for a film by Kira Muratova and is the first foreigner to win the trust of the eccentric and still active 89-year-old Russian.
The Other SideRoberto Minervini IFFR 2016 92′
The seamy side of the American dream is exposed in this intimate portrait of people who have been forgotten by society in the deep south of the not-so-United States: drug addicts Mark and Lisa and their fellows, plus the members of an armed militia. Fuck Obama!
Our Fathers' SonsUlaa Salim IFFR 2016 8′
A son seeks his father’s approval. He relates what it’s like to be raised in a country with a culture different to that of your father.
Panels for the Walls of the WorldStan Vanderbeek IFFR 2016 8′
A 20th-century collage: ranging from Marilyn Monroe, moon missions and dancing twirlers to military parades. One of the first video mixing experiments.
Paths of the SoulIFFR 2016 117′
Nyima and his uncle Yang think it’s time for a pilgrimage to Lhasa. On the 2000-kilometre-long road, they throw themselves to the ground every few metres, meanwhile cheerfully braving trucks, earthquakes and the elements. One of the most gripping and thought-provoking pilgrimages in the history of film.
Peace in the Absence of WarTheo Anthony IFFR 2016 5′
Portrait of Baltimore after Freddie Gray’s death. A confused city in pain that counted both protests and classical concerts among its responses. Screens before The Other Side.
De pedaalridderAri Deelder IFFR 2016 50′
The life of racing cyclist and city Don Quixote Willem Koopman can be described as going from the podium to the gutter. High time a film was made about this intriguing man and his tragic life. With and by many big names from Rotterdam.
Pieta in the ToiletMatsunaga Daishi IFFR 2016 120′
Have a tissue at hand: a very emotional film. A young artist has given up on everything. He no longer believes in his talent and when he turns out to be incurably ill, he doesn’t seem to care about that either. And then comes the turn-around. Based on the last diary by Osamu Tezuka, the 'God of Manga'.
PoemDan Browne IFFR 2016 4′
Images cycle and combine into dream-like passages that reveal the infinite potentials of sight within the finitude of everyday objects. Based on a poem by Michael Snow.
PréjudiceAntoine Cuypers IFFR 2016 105′
A provocative psychological family drama, in which on a beautiful summer evening the carefully cherished harmony falls apart. Cédric, usually locked up in his own world, reacts defiantly to the glad tidings of his sister’s pregnancy. Strong debut with an outstanding actors’ ensemble headed by Nathalie Baye as domineering mother. With IFFR Live screening on Sat 30 Jan.
Problemski HotelManu Riche IFFR 2016 110′
Bipul has forgotten who he is and where he’s from. But thanks to his knowledge of languages and his qualities as an intermediary, he has grown into a natural leader at the asylum seeker centre in Brussels where he resides. Irony prevails in this second adaptation of a novel by Dimitri Verhulst (after The Misfortunates).
Il quarto giorno di scuolaMartina Melilli IFFR 2016 5′
The director’s father crossed over from Tripoli to Italy as a child. His story aligns seamlessly with that of the current stream of migrants and their experiences.
The Return of ErkinMaria Guskova IFFR 2016 29′
After years spent in prison, Erkin returns to his village. A compelling and beautifully paced portrait of a broken man.
RiotNathan Silver IFFR 2016 4′
Nine-year old Silver directed his first film during his birthday party in 1992, re-enacting the LA riots with friends.
RoomLenny Abrahamson IFFR 2016 118′
Original psychological thriller (by the director of Frank), after the international bestseller by Emma Donoghue. The peaceful life of Ma and her five-year-old son Jack, in their unusual universe, takes a blood-curdling turn when the yearning for the outside world becomes too strong. Moving performances by Brie Larson and the young Jacob Tremblay.
SafeTodd Haynes IFFR 2016 118′
An affluent woman (Julianne Moore) lives in a Californian mansion and one day starts to be heavily allergic to everything that surrounds her. Is it an unknown disease or a deep personal crisis caused by her seemingly perfect lifestyle? An enigmatic Todd Haynes masterpiece and a crucial film on construction and loss of identity in a modern world.
São Paulo com DanielDeborah Viegas, Nicolas Thomé Zetune IFFR 2016 30′
Much to his chagrin, Daniel has to accompany his mother to an oncology conference. An unexpected meeting makes it an interesting weekend after all.
SayonaraIFFR 2016 112′
Japan after the nuclear disaster. A lonely girl is waiting for the evacuation together with her only friend, a female android that is almost indistinguishable from a human being. A touching, subtle and visually brilliant film on displacement, alienation and the nature of emotions. Moreover, it features the most charming android ever played by a real android! Nominated for the VPRO Big Screen Award.
ScrapbookMike Hoolboom IFFR 2016 18′
Autist Donna Washington comments on footage of her and her fellow patients, shot 50 years ago at the psychiatric clinic.
Sept. - Oct. 2015, CizreIFFR 2016 15′
Which selections do you make when you record the war around you? Women and children in Cizre gain a voice with their own documentary.
SilberseeAlexandra Navratil IFFR 2016 11′
Alexandra Navratil’s photo-essay takes the perspective of the chemically contaminated lake Silbersee to illustrate the slow torture man inflicts on Earth.
The Silence of AniFrancis Alÿs IFFR 2016 13′
Between Armenia and Turkey lie the ruins of once bustling Ani. The silence is increasingly broken by birdsong. Has everything been staged?
A Simple Story, Mine, Yours and M’sAtefeh Yarmohammadi IFFR 2016 33′
The director, who was born in Tehran during the Iran-Iraq war, works out her personal history. Painful, yet not sentimental.
The Slow Business of GoingAthina Rachel Tsangari IFFR 2016 101′
Petra Going is a migrant cyborg. Every day she goes to a new city to collect other people's memories while being deprived of memories herself. Set in different locations across the globe, this striking debut by Athina Rachel Tsangari is a multi-genre story about alienation, understanding of home and the relationship between men and women.
O som da casaMaxime Kathari IFFR 2016 14′
A few fleeting moments between a Brazilian student getting ready to leave for Europe and her mother observing her silently. A loving farewell.
The Song of Rio JimMaurice Lemaître IFFR 2016 6′
A musical film experience. The sound, not the images, tells the story. An homage to the founders of the Western genre. With brutal wind instruments.
SpermwhoreAnna Linder IFFR 2016 12′
Experimental film about unwanted childlessness in a world where heterosexual relationships dictate. The possibility of pregnancy can be gifted, shared and undertaken together.