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FESTIVALS France

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An Etrange Festival that’s set to be electrifying

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- Five world premieres and eight European premieres are lined up for the most extravagant film event in France, with a ‘Carte Blanche’ focus dedicated to Ben Wheatley

An Etrange Festival that’s set to be electrifying

Next Wednesday, British schizophrenic thriller Brand New-U [+see also:
film review
trailer
film profile
]
by Simon Plummel, being shown in competition and in its international premiere, will open the 21st Etrange Festival, which will be held until 13 September in Paris, bringing together thrill-seeking and off-the-wall cinephiles from all walks of life at the Forum des Images. The spicy programme certainly doesn’t lack scope, with five global premieres (including Ghost Theatre by Hideo Nakata), eight European premieres, two international premieres and a torrent of French premieres. Without forgetting, of course, the Carte Blanche focuses dedicated to three of the most iconic filmmakers of our time: British filmmaker Ben Wheatley, Canadian director Guy Maddin, and French filmmaker Benoît Delépine.

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Of the 23 feature films participating in the international competition, ten European productions stand out, in particular Schneider vs. Bax [+see also:
film review
trailer
film focus
interview: Alex van Warmerdam
film profile
]
by Dutch director Alex Van Warmerdam (screened in competition at this year’s Locarno Film Festival – read the review and interview). Also in the running are two British comedies: Nina Forever by Ben and Chris Blaine and Moonwalkers [+see also:
trailer
film profile
]
 by Antoine Bardou-Jacquet.  

The selection also features devilish huis clos The Corpse of Anna Fritz [+see also:
trailer
film profile
]
by Spanish director Hector Hernandez Vicens, labyrinthine nightmare Baskin by Turkish filmmaker Can Evrenol, the astonishing Franco-Belgian co-production The Wakhan Front [+see also:
film review
trailer
film profile
]
by French director Clément Cogitore (read the review – screened in Critics’ Week at this year’s Cannes Film Festival) and three Scandinavian films: Klovn Forever [+see also:
trailer
film profile
]
by Danish director Mikkel Norgaard (global premiere), Men & Chicken [+see also:
trailer
film profile
]
by fellow Dane Anders Thomas Jensen and docu-fiction The Visit [+see also:
trailer
film profile
]
by Michael Madsen (co-produced by Finland and Denmark). All in all an attractive competition made complete by films from South Korea, Japan, the United States and Canada.

The abundance of films on offer led to the creation of three new sections this year, two of which are the Nouveaux Talents and Mondovision sections. The programme of the former includes fantasy comedy L'élan [+see also:
trailer
film profile
]
 by French filmmaker Etienne Labroue (global premiere), the outrageous Aaaaaaaah! by Brit Steve Oram (Ben Wheatley’s co-screenwriter) and animated film Extraordinary Tales [+see also:
film review
trailer
film profile
]
by Spanish director Raoul Garcia. The Mondovision section, on the other hand, will notably feature Hungarian films Mirage [+see also:
trailer
film profile
]
by Szabolcs Hajdu and Free Fall [+see also:
film review
trailer
film profile
]
by György Palfi, In the Basement [+see also:
film review
trailer
film profile
]
by Austrian director Ulrich Seidl, British experimental film Chernozem by Judd Brucke, and the global premieres of surrealist Dutch drama Cat & Mouse by the duo Victor Nieuwenhuijs - Maartje Seyferth and Little Cattle Towards Glow by Dennis Cooper and Zac Farley (with Christophe Honoré as associate producer). 

The Festival will also feature A German Youth [+see also:
trailer
film profile
]
by Jean-Gabriel Périot and B-Movie: Lust & Sound in West-Berlin [+see also:
trailer
film profile
]
in the documentaries section, a ‘Turkish Delirium’ Focus (with a screening of Seytan by Metin Erksan), a "Nuggets from L'Étrange" section, a ‘Nuit de l'étrange’, and a prolific selection of short films, with a wide-ranging programme for this year’s Festival that is sure to showcase the best that a different-looking world has to offer for the big screen.

(Translated from French)

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