Close-up on the East at Cinessonne, showcase for European cinema
by Fabien Lemercier
12/10/2006 - The 8th edition of the Cinessonne European Film Festival has been in full swing in the outskirts of Paris since last weekend.
Running until October 21, the programme, with a competition of 12 features premiering in France consists of films of exceptional quality. including two titles nominated for the 2007 Oscar Best Foreign Language Film: award-winning Venice title The Golden Door [trailer, film focus] by Italy’s Emanuele Crialese (see interview and article) and White Palms [trailer, film focus] by Hungary’s Szabolcs Hajdu (see article and interview with director).
Other competition titles include the multi-award winning 12:08 East of Bucharest [trailer, film focus] by Romania’s Corneliu Porumboiu (Caméra d’Or at the 2006 Cannes Film Festival – see article), Hungarian debut feature Fresh Air [trailer] by Ágnes Kocsis (see interview), August Days by Catalan director Marc Recha, The Colour of Words [trailer] by Belgium’s Philippe Blasband, The Wedding Director by Italian helmer Marco Bellocchio, The Perfect Afternoon by Poland’s Przemyslaw Wojcieszek, An Enemy of the People by Norway’s Erik Skjoldbjærg, PingPong [trailer, film focus] by Germany’s Matthias Luthardt (well-received at Cannes’ Critics’ Week – see article) and two French films that won prizes at Locarno: Demented [trailer, film focus] by Laurent Achard and The Year After [trailer] by Isabelle Czajka (Best Director and Golden Leopard for First Feature Film respectively).
This year, the focus is on Eastern European film with the Vent d'Est 01 section. To address the contrast between the artistic wealth of the young generation of Polish, Hungarian and Czech directors and the poor exhibition of their work in France, Cinessonne is presenting 12 recent features, shorts and animated films. This is a good opportunity to see for a first, or indeed second time, such films as Taxidermia [trailer] by György Pálfi (see interview), Dealer by Benedek Fliegauf, Moscow Square and Szezon by Ferenc Török, Something Like Happiness [trailer, film focus] by Bohdan Sláma (Czech Oscar entry – see Focus) or Czech Dream by directing duo Vít Klusák and Filip Remuda.
Aside from a competition featuring 20 European shorts and Cartes Blanches for journalists ("Europe as they see it"), the festival is giving audiences a chance to meet directors Gérald Hustache-Mathieu, Jean-François Laguionie, Amos Gitaï and Benoît Jacquot.
(Translated from French)