CONTEMPORARY

ADORATION

Fabrice du Welz, France/Belgium, 2019, 98′

Fabrice du Welz concludes his “Ardennes trilogy” (after Calvaire and Alleluia, both previously screened at Kurja Polt) with an ethereal tale of teenage amour fou. Deceivingly simple, Adoration is a testament to the power of du Welz’s filmmaking vision, as delicate as it is daring. Winner of Méliès d’Argent for Best European Feature Film at Sitges Fantastic Film Festival.

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KOIRAT EIVÄT KÄYTÄ HOUSUJA

DOGS DON’T WEAR PANTS

J-P Valkeapää, Finland/Latvia, 2019, 105′

After losing his wife in a drowning accident, a widowed surgeon and now single father Juha is left emotionally paralyzed. Until one day he stumbles into the den of a dominatrix named Mona. One of the major discoveries at last year’s Cannes and winner of several Best feature awards, Dogs Don’t Wear Pants is a darkly humorous, deliciously painful and cathartic story of loss, love and the sweet pain of being.

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KOKO-DI KOKO-DA

Johannes Nyholm, Sweden/Denmark, 2019, 86′

After a shattering tragedy, a couple goes on a trip to find their way back to each other. But an old man in a straw hat and his shady entourage await them in the woods. Inventive, eerie and perversely fun, Johannes Nyholm’s second feature is a nightmarish pseudo-surrealist fantasy, a fairy tale for adults, infused with formal experimentation and the darkest of humours.

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JESUS SHOWS YOU THE WAY TO THE HIGHWAY

Miguel Llansó, Spain/Estonia/Ethiopia/Latvia/Romania/UK, 2019, 82′

CIA Agents Palmer and Gagano are tasked with the mission of destroying a computer virus called “Soviet Union”. They enter the system using VR but the mission turns into a trap. Billed as a “WTF Thriller” and “The Matrix on Acid”, Miguel Llansó’s second feature steeps Afrofuturism in the retro aesthetics of Cold-War spy thrillers and B-movie actioners.

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MATINÉE / FOCUS: AFRICA

LE FRANC

Djibril Diop Mambéty, Senegal/France/Switzerland, 1994, 46′

A lesson for society, but also a whimsical fable, full of hope and humanity, centred on the Chaplinesque figure of the downtrodden everyman Marigo, Le franc is the first instalment of the unfinished trilogy Tales of Little People by the late great humanist poet of Senegalese cinema Djibril Diop Mambéty.

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LA PETITE VENDEUSE DE SOLEIL

THE LITTLE GIRL WHO SOLD THE SUN

Djibril Diop Mambéty, Senegal/France/Switzerland, 1999, 45′

A young crippled girl Sili lives on the streets of Dakar where she begs for her daily subsistence. But she is determined to change things around. Starting tomorrow, she will sell newspapers just like the boys. The second part of Mambéty’s unfinished trilogy centring on the Tales of Little People in the grip of global economy, is a hymn to the courage of street children.

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FOCUS: AFRICA

SARRAOUNIA

Med Hondo, Burkina Faso/Mauritania/France, 1986, 120′

Based on historical accounts of the African warrior queen, Sarraounia is a glorious widescreen epic and a furious, acerbic denouncement of colonial expansion from African cinema’s foundational figure and ingenious radical Med Hondo. Grand prize winner of the Ouagadougou Panafrican Film Festival FESPACO in 1987.

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COZ OV MONI 2: FOKN REVENGE

King Luu, Ghana, 2013, 62′

Though many now follow in their footsteps, Ghana’s musical trailblazers FOKN Bois were the first to abandon the colonialist Queen’s English with their subversive use of Pidgin slang in music and filmmaking. Come witness “The World’s 2nd 1st Pidgin Musical” featuring FOKN Bois with M3NSA and Wanlov the Kubolor in attendance!

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WHO KILLED CAPTAIN ALEX?

Nabwana I.G.G., Uganda, 2010, 67′

Captain Alex, one of the most decorated officers in Ugandan People’s Defence Force, is sent out to destroy the evil Richard and his Tiger Mafia. When Alex is killed in the process, his brother, a Ugandan Shaolin Monk, arrives in Kampala in search of the murderer. From Wakaliwood, home of the world’s greatest gonzo filmmakers, comes Uganda’s first action movie. Wakaliwood ambassador to the world Alan Ssali Hofmanis in attendance!

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BAD BLACK

Nabwana I.G.G., Uganda, 2016, 68′

A mild-mannered doctor is trained in the art of ass-kicking commando vengeance by a no-nonsense ghetto kid named Wesley Snipes. A slum in Uganda’s capital of Kampala, Wakaliga is home to the grassroots film studio Wakaliwood where director Nabwana aka “Uganda’s Tarantino” and his crew are creating the most insanely entertaining no-budget DIY action extravaganza you’ve ever seen. Star-producer Alan Ssali Hofmanis in attendance!

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JESUS SHOWS YOU THE WAY TO THE HIGHWAY

Miguel Llansó, Spain/Estonia/Ethiopia/Latvia/Romania/UK, 2019, 82′

CIA Agents Palmer and Gagano are tasked with the mission of destroying a computer virus called “Soviet Union”. They enter the system using VR but the mission turns into a trap. Billed as a “WTF Thriller” and “The Matrix on Acid”, Miguel Llansó’s second feature steeps Afrofuturism in the retro aesthetics of Cold-War spy thrillers and B-movie actioners.

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ENDEMIC

NEDOSTAJE MI SONJA HENIE

I MISS SONJA HENIE

Karpo Godina, Miloš Forman, Buck Henry, Tinto Brass, Paul Morrissey, Frederick Wiseman, Bogdan Tirnanić, Puriša Ðorđević, Dušan Makavejev, Yugoslavia, 1972, 14′

At the famous 1972 Belgrade FEST director, cinematographer and one of the standard-bearers of the Yugoslav Black Wave, Karpo Godina, invites several prominent guests to a small attic apartment in the middle of the night, with a 35mm camera waiting in the corner. Their assignment is to make 3-minute shorts, following a simple set of rules.

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THE MAKING OF SONJA HENIE

Karpo Godina, Yugoslavia/Slovenia, 1972-2007, 97′

In 1972 at the Belgrade Film Festival, Karpo Godina brought together the who’s who of independent filmmaking including Miloš Forman, Buck Henry, Paul Morrissey, Frederick Wiseman and Tinto Brass to create the now legendary Dadaistic collage I Miss Sonja Henie. Godina’s own making of “documentary” offers an insight into this creative process and serves as an invaluable record of a lost era. This is cult cinema in action! Director Karpo Godina in attendance!

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RETROSPECTIVE: BEYOND THE UNCANNY

HÄXAN

THE WITCH

Benjamin Christensen, Sweden/Denmark, 1922, 106′

Banned and heavily censored at the time of its original release, Häxan today rightly stands as one of the most artistically unique and original works of cinema’s silent era. Surreal, grotesque, humorous and strikingly progressive, this is one of cinema’s earliest cult films. Live score by Elvis Homan and Boštjan Simon.

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LES YEUX SANS VISAGE

EYES WITHOUT A FACE

Georges Franju, France/Italy, 1960, 88′

After causing a car accident which left his daughter horribly disfigured, an obsessive surgeon desperately attempts to recreate her face. Georges Franju’s poetically surreal and chillingly visceral psychological nightmare is a bona fide classic of horror cinema, exquisitely photographed by Eugen Schüfftan and unravelling to a hypnotic original score by Maurice Jarre.

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MAIS NE NOUS DÉLIVREZ PAS DU MAL

DON’T DELIVER US FROM EVIL

Joël Séria, France, 1971, 102′

When best friends Anne and Lore are left home alone during summer vacation their games of cruelty and seduction spiral out of control. Banned in France at the time of its release, Joël Séria’s rarely seen masterpiece of youth rebellion and nonconformism, denouncing religious and bourgeois hypocrisy, is a true gem of subversive cinema. Masterclass with director Joël Séria and actress Jeanne Goupil!

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PICNIC AT HANGING ROCK

Peter Weir, Australia, 1975, 107′

On a beautiful summer’s day a group of students from the all-female Appleyard College prepare for an outing from which some of them will never return. The sublimely beautiful, enigmatic and eerie chronicle of a disappearance helped usher in a new era of Australian cinema and established director Peter Weir as a major international talent.

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THUNDERCRACK!

Curt McDowell, USA, 1975, 120′

On a dark and stormy night, a party of strangers seeks shelter at an old, dilapidated mansion. To pass the time they will share tragic tales and carnal pleasures. Curt McDowell’s underground masterpiece of cult/camp/queer cinema is a deranged genre mash-up of Gothic horror, hysterical melodrama and hard-core porn, bursting with anarchic humour, delicious arousal and delirious excess. Midnight Movie!

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THE MAFU CAGE

Karen Arthur, USA, 1978, 102′

Director Karen Arthur’s The Mafu Cage, which premiered at the Cannes Film Festival in 1978, is a dark and bizarre tale of madness, obsession and incestuous passion, featuring a uniquely twisted female “villain”. A criminally underrated gem ripe for rediscovery.

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SCHRAMM

Jörg Buttgereit, Germany, 1993, 65′

As Lothar Schramm lies dying in a pool of his own blood, the fragmented memories of his life flash before his eyes. Cult filmmaker, trash poet, punk surrealist and underground icon Jörg Buttgereit (Nekromantik) transports us into the nightmarish world of a deranged mind with this strikingly singular entry into the serial killer subgenre. Director Jörg Buttgereit in attendance!

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SHORTS

TOMORROW I WILL BE DIRT

Robert Morgan, UK, 2019, 8′

An authorised, surrealistic animation sequel to Jörg Buttgereit’s 1993 film Schramm. Told through Robert Morgan’s singular stop-motion artistry and dark humour, this is the ultimate Freudian nightmare.

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SCHWEINCHEN

PIGLETS

Jörg Buttgereit, Germany, 2020, 20′

Schweinchen documents a decomposition study conducted by forensic biologist Dr. Mark Benecke under the artistic guidance of Jörg Buttgereit. After its world premiere at this year’s Berlinale, cult filmmaker Jörg Buttgereit will present his newest film in person!

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