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BIOGRAFILM 2021

94 European productions and 17 world premieres are set to grace the 17th Biografilm Festival

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- The festival dedicated to biographies and life stories is returning between 4 and 14 June, in Bologna and online, boasting a total of 106 films

94 European productions and 17 world premieres are set to grace the 17th Biografilm Festival
Game of the Year by Alessandro Redaelli

The 17th edition of the Biografilm Festival, directed by Leena Pasanen, will unspool partly online and partly in person between 4 and 14 June. This year, the festival dedicated to biographies and life stories is offering up 106 films, of which 94 are European productions and 17 are world premieres, and including 50 films directed by women and 42 first works. Hailing from 44 different countries, the films will be viewable in person in a dedicated Bologna cinema, as well as on the Mymovies streaming platform.

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Diligence, courage, defiance of imposed limits and a tendency towards change are just some of the common themes explored by the films jostling in competition. Amongst the 12 titles screening in the International Competition, we encounter two young Turkish workers confronted with mass tourism and their own aspirations and values in Volkan Üce’s All-in [+see also:
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]
; a group of actors resisting Lukashenko’s regime during the 20202 presidential elections in Belarus, in Aliaksei Paluyan’s Courage [+see also:
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interview: Aliaksei Paluyan and Jörn M…
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]
; we meet young and defiant, free-thinking women on the north eastern outskirts of Paris who look towards the future, in Louise Mootz’s medium-length film Jungle. We then move from Afghanistan to Europe with Flee [+see also:
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interview: Jonas Poher Rasmussen
film profile
]
by Jonas Poher Rasmussen, which recounts a journey of personal growth and self-discovery, and The Last Shelter [+see also:
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by Ousmane Samassékou which takes us inside the Migrant House in the city of Gao in Mali.

Topical issues, environmentalism and human rights are among the central themes of the 10 documentaries screening in Biografilm Italy’s competitive section: from My Place Is Here [+see also:
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by Michele Aiello, which was shot inside an Italian hospital during the first wave of Covid-19, and the animal rights leaning which saves the life of the protagonist starring in Luca Rabotti’s first work Squilibrio, to Game of the Year, the second work by the young and talented Alessandro Redaelli (Funeralopolis), which explores the tentacular world of the video games industry, and A Declaration of Love by Marco Speroni, which tells the story-confession of Curtis McCarty who was found to be innocent after 22 years spent in hard prison but who can no longer find his place in the world.

Political passion, female empowerment and celebration of LGBTQI+ diversity are some of the themes touched upon by the festival’s Contemporary Lives line-up. The impossible day-to-day life of young Palestinians transitioning from childhood to adolescence is at the heart of Skies Above Hebron by Esther Hertog and Paul King, while Telling My Son's Land by Ilaria Jovine and Roberto Mariotti revolves around the unpleasant public and private battle fought by the passionate journalist Nancy Porsia. Also worth a mention is Maite Alberdi’s ironic work The Mole Agent [+see also:
film review
trailer
interview: Maite Alberdi
film profile
]
and the journey towards self-determination experienced by a trans boy in Alexa Bakony’s Colors of Tobi [+see also:
film review
trailer
interview: Alexa Bakony
film profile
]
. There’s also The Mole by Mads Brügger, Avanturista by Anna Petkov, Ghofrane et les promesses du printemps by Raja Amari and Ninosca by Peter Torbiörnsson.

21 documentaries are set to grace the Biografilm Art&Music section, including A Symphony of Noise [+see also:
film review
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]
by Enrique Sánchez Lansch, an up-close encounter with Marina Abramovic in 512 Hours [+see also:
film review
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]
by Adina Istrate and Giannina La Salvia, White Cube [+see also:
film review
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interview: Renzo Martens
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by Renzo Martens and Il coraggio del leone by Marco Spagnoli, which takes us behind the scenes of the most recent Venice Film Festival. The Meet the Masters line-up will also return, homing in on the talents of two European documentary-makers: Helena Třeštíková and Heddy Honigmann. Last but not least, space has also been made for fiction films within the programme by way of the new Larger than Fiction section, which includes Bliss [+see also:
film review
interview: Henrika Kull
film profile
]
by Henrika Kull, The Translator [+see also:
film review
interview: Rana Kazkaz and Anas Khalaf
film profile
]
by Rana Kazkaz and Anas Khalaf, The Third War [+see also:
film review
trailer
interview: Giovanni Aloi
film profile
]
by Giovanni Aloi, Should the Wind Drop [+see also:
film review
trailer
interview: Nora Martirosyan
film profile
]
by Nora Martirosyan and Un setting by Pietro Faiella.

Professionals, meanwhile, can set their sights on the Pitching Forum unfolding on 10 and 11 June at the Pop Up Cinema Medica Palace, as part of Bio to B – Industry Days. The event will see 13 selected projects being presented to a group of international decision makers.

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(Translated from Italian)

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