Tofifest: understanding Islam through film
by Dorota Hartwich
- A section dedicated to the Iranian New Wave and women in the modern cinema of Muslim countries is being showcased in Torun
Fully living up to its reputation as a "rebel festival", the 13th Tofifest of Torun (18 - 25 October) has chosen to include a section called "Islam. The Near and Far East" in its programme, with the aim of trying to better understand the Muslim world through its films.
The section has two parts. The first, "The ABC of the Iranian New Wave" gives audiences in Torun the opportunity to discover or re-watch key films from this Iranian movement, films which made a splash internationally. Among them are the two Franco-Iranian co-productions About Elly by Asghar Farhadi (which won the Silver Bear for Best Director at the Berlinale in 2009) and Taste of Cherry by Abbas Kiarostami (which won the Palme d'Or at Cannes in 1997), The White Balloon by Jafar Panahi (which won the Caméra d’or in 1995) and The Cow by Dariush Mehrjui (winner of the Fipresci Prize at Venice in 1971), which will be screened for the first time in Poland.
The second part of the programme, entitled "Portrait of a woman – heroine and director", aims to turn the spotlight onto the muslim woman as a character in film or behind the camera directing. Here two feature films that were highly acclaimed at this year’s Cannes Film Festival stand out in particular: French delegate production Mustang [+see also:
interview: Deniz Gamze Ergüven
film profile] by Turkish director Deniz Gamze Ergüven and Nahid by Iranian filmmaker Ida Panahandeh (the winner of this year’s Certain Regard section at Cannes). Also worth mentioning, among others, is No Land’s Song by Iranian director Ayat Najafi (who won the prize for Best Documentary at Montréal last year) and The Square [+see also:
film profile] by Egyptian-American documentary maker Jehane Noujaim (who won the audience award at Sundance and Toronto in 2013, and was nominated for an Oscar in 2014 and the Amnesty International prize at the Berlinale).
(Translated from French)