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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
AccelerandoGeorg Wasner IFFR 2017 40′
Essayist Georg Wasner used fragments from three films to breathe new life into a text from 1909. This was the year that Norman Angell published his manifesto Europe’s Optical Illusion, in which he warns of violent reactions to globalisation, which even then was in the air.
Alain Pierre - LIVE concertIFFR 2017
L' amatoreMaria Mauti IFFR 2017 90′
In 1920s and 1930s Milan, Piero Portaluppi became a successful architect, as well as an enthusiastic filmmaker. His collection of amateur films not only illustrates his career but also gives an impression of a society increasingly under the spell of Mussolini.
Answer PrintMónica Savirón IFFR 2017 5′
Images on celluloid eventually deteriorate. In fact, a loss of colour is already noticeable in this poetic collage of recycled, predominantly magenta fragments.
Break Up – L'uomo dei cinque palloniMarco Ferreri IFFR 2017 85′
The swinging sixties in Milan: the inimitable Marcello Mastroianni, owner of a sweets factory, becomes completely obsessed by a balloon – how far can you pump it up before it bursts? In Italy, this satire on capitalism was never released in its entirety – fortunately it has now been wonderfully restored.
Burning Mountains That Spew FlameSamuel M. Delgado, Helena Girón IFFR 2017 14′
Immersing the viewer in the darkest corridors deep in the earth, this film suggests all sorts of underground activities, from the political to the mythical.
Colossal CaveGraeme Arnfield IFFR 2017 11′
Plato’s allegory of the cave is often read as a prefiguration of cinema. Yet this film illustrates how online gaming was born from a network of caves.
Conner's Crossroads and The Exploding Digital InevitableRoss Lipman, Bruce Conner IFFR 2017 86′
Crossroads (1976), the most controversial film by avant-garde icon Bruce Conner, consists solely of images of atomic tests, set to music by Terry Riley. Former film historian and restorer Ross Lipman takes a new look at the material, and the human urge towards self-destruction. He does this in the form of a 'live documentary'.
Conseil d'EtatFanny Zaman IFFR 2017 8′
Footage from the 1950s evokes memories of both modernist euphoria and the Cold War. The soundtrack however refers to 1980s Belgian paranoia.
David Lynch: The Art LifeJon Nguyen, Olivia Neergaard-Holm, Rick Barnes IFFR 2017 90′
Cineaste, musician, artist, guru and coffee aficionado David Lynch takes us back to the roots of his creativity. A portrait of the artist as a young man, played by himself as a relaxed, candid, middle-aged man – with the emphasis on painting and how he swapped a cosy nest for an odyssey through his dark side.
Dawn of the FelinesShiraishi Kazuya IFFR 2017 84′
Examining the rule book for Roman Porno films used by the Nikkatsu studio from the 1970s to the 1980s, this contemporary pink treat finds that the practices of prostitution have changed significantly since then. Under the neon lights of Tokyo, we follow three sex workers whose lives are meshed in bittersweet melancholy.
Dawson City: Frozen TimeIFFR 2017 120′
Compelling documentary about Dawson City and the unique relationship between this little Canadian town with its cinema and the gold fever that briefly engulfed the sleepy fishing village. Both a symphony and a time capsule, consisting of fragments from the perfectly preserved silent films found in a dump. A marvellous record of the early 20th century.
En (Circle)Imai Norio IFFR 2017 3′
Echoing his work in white relief sculptures, Imai Norio’s debut film is entirely composed of circular flashes made using a hole punch on each frame of 16mm black film leader.
EpistolarRaúl Ruiz IFFR 2017 7′
Five pesos and a cup of coffee on a table top. Raúl Ruiz gets the most from this minimal set-up, both visually and through the laconic soundtrack.
EscapesMichael Almereyda IFFR 2017 90′
An actor who played mainly supporting roles during the 1960s and 1970s tells his life story. Fascinating anecdotes, illustrated by a host of film clips, about the people he worked with, the relationships he had and friendships that developed. An unknown name to many, which makes the surprise in the last part of the film all the greater.
ExprmntlBrecht Debackere IFFR 2017 68′
The enigmatic Jacques Ledoux was not only the initiator and, for many years, heart and soul of the Brussels film archive – five times he also organised a festival of avant-garde film in the casino of the cosmopolitan resort Knokke. This festival’s celebrated reputation spread worldwide, and continues to stir imaginations to this day.
EXPRMNTL PAPERSXavier García Bardón IFFR 2017 360′
As rich as the pantheon of entries in the EXPRMNTL festival may appear, many more projects were proposed, yet not selected. From the vaults of the Brussels Cinematek comes a selection of documents, posters, print work and special projects that constitute a counter-archive to what is celebrated as the most important festival of the avant-garde.
Family of ManIFFR 2017
Vintage political paranoia from Belgium, Eisenstein’s posthumous outing as a homosexual, a mountain of mutilated female bodies and a Brazilian family album. On the psychology of collecting and the dangerous tendency to also categorise people.
Le film à venirRaúl Ruiz IFFR 2017 8′
One of the most emblematic films by the master concerns a holy fragment of celluloid that can only be seen by a secret society known as the Philokinetes.
FloorImai Norio IFFR 2017 3′
Imai Norio films the floor of a room. A 16mm home movie that gives a small impression of how an artist’s mind works when toying with a medium new to him.
GeminiMeggy Rustamova IFFR 2017 4′
Using a wide range of archival images, Rustamova evokes tension between abstract images and familiar scenes from daily life. The artist’s associative editing is based on thematic clusters such as twins and look-alikes, as well as references to art history. "What if parrots could actually speak?"
Ghost ChildrenJoão Vieira Torres IFFR 2017 16′
A procession of cheap snapshots, most likely assembled from discarded family albums. Voices reminisce about childhood, while the camera explores the fading colours.
GilEva Giolo IFFR 2017 5′
At the core of this film collage is the artist’s search for the face of her deceased twin brother, who died without leaving behind any photographic record. Paradoxically his absence is rendered perceptible through a profusion of images. An indirect portrait as the confirmation of an existence.
Homeless MoviesIFFR 2017
Six young artists created a new work based on The House of Alijn's collection of amateur films. The project elicits questions concerning the evolution of image culture, identity, media usage and memory.
A House Is Not a HomeJasper Rigole IFFR 2017 4′
This film explores the semiotic relationship between word and image; starting point is the notion that ambitious amateurs often add 'relevant details' for extra visual appeal. As they tend to visualise their intentions quite literally, this often leads to absurd interpretations.
How I Fell in Love with Eva RasAndré Gil Mata IFFR 2017 74′
The old films seventy-year-old Sena watches daily in a cinema in Sarajevo, where she lives and works in the projection booth, show parallels with her life in former Yugoslavia, from the German occupation through Tito’s Communist utopia to the siege of Sarajevo in 1992 and the disintegration of her country.
Imai Norio: Severed Film/Jointed FilmImai Norio IFFR 2017 570′
In the first international show case of the work of Imai Norio, part of the art collective Gutai, film, video and dia's are screened that playfully deal with the limits of these media.
Imai Norio: Time Severed, Jointed and StretchedIFFR 2017
In light of the exhibition Imai Norio: Severed Film/Jointed Film, there will be a one-off screening of Imai Norio’s films, videos, and the documentations of his performances.
Sun 29 Jan, 18:00, Gallery JOEY RAMONE, free admission
Jan zonder VreesJef Cassiers IFFR 2017 78′
This animated film, full of references to Old Masters like Brueghel and Bosch, tells the tale of an extremely strong farm boy battling evil. Thanks to its pioneering synthesiser soundtrack by Alain Pierre, this 1980s children’s film remains fresh. With a live concert by the composer, in co-production with WORM.
Jointed FilmImai Norio IFFR 2017 20′
The film version of his installation Severed Film, Imai Norio’s found-footage film is a collage made from discarded 16mm film he collected from a local television station.
Lost Landscapes of Los AngelesRick Prelinger IFFR 2017 83′
This soundless compilation by Rick Prelinger consists of historical images of Los Angeles, partly filmed by anonymous amateurs and partly by Hollywood professionals wanting to use the footage as background in their studio recordings. Now they act as the background for festival visitors wishing to momentarily lose themselves in a dream scenario.
Mansfield 66/67Todd Hughes IFFR 2017 96′
A campily designed documentary about the last year in the life of voluptuous actress Jayne Mansfield, who shortly before her death developed an intense interest in satanic rituals. A whole raft of academics, feminists and psychologists give their opinions, alongside homages from cultural icons such as John Waters, Kenneth Anger and Marilyn Manson.