Highly awarded Austrian experimental cinema at BIEFF 2012!

The Bucharest International Experimental Film Festival BIEFF 2012 showcases for the Romanian audience some of the most successful festival-awarded Austrian shorts of the past few years, a selection of exceptional titles that have won prizes on an international scale, courtesy of the SIXPACKFILM portfolio, the most important distributor of experimental cinema and visual art in Austria.

 

SIXPACKFILM is a non-profit organization internationally active in the promotion and distribution of contemporary Austrian cinema. With over 20 years of experience, SIXPACKFILM presently collaborates with more than 200 festivals around the world, resulting in over 500 selections and awards each year. SIXPACKFILM is also extremely active in distributing and exhibiting Austrian experimental cinema, and has an impressive archive which includes the works of most of the important voices of Austrian avant-garde cinema.

 

 

SIXPACKFILM will be present in Bucharest not only through its unique selection of films, but also through the participation of Mrs. Brigitta Burger-Utzer - the Managing Director of the institution, a top professional in the experimental cinema and visual art area -, who is also a member of the BIEFF 2012 International Competition Jury. BIEFF’s collaboration with SIXPACKFILM is possible thanks to the generous support offered by the Austrian Cultural Forum.

From the remarkable selection that SIXPACKFILM brings in front of the Bucharest audience, we mention:

 

Nominated for the EFA European Film Academy Awards in the International Film Festival Venice 2011 and winner of the Award for Innovative Cinema at the Diagonale Film Festival Austria 2011, HYPERCRISIS is a caustic and full of humor social study, set in a former recreation house for Soviet filmmakers, which has been repurposed to accommodate writers. Yet, the institution doesn't seem to function nowadays with more success than in the past. The only person on the guest list is a poet from the promising times of the Perestroika, who has been long trying to overcome a creative blockage. “The ironic gestures, the apparent ease and great sadness of the film, the way this self-destructive space is brought to life again - all these have convinced the jury that Josef Dabernig’s HYPERCRISIS deserves the award for Innovative Cinema.” (Jury’s statement - Diagonale 2012)

 

 

One of the most savory titles of the selection and one of the audience’s favorites at major festivals like Rotterdam, Upsalla, São Paolo, Hamburg, Semana de Cine Experimental de Madrid etc., APNOE, describes, at a first glance, an ordinary day in the life of a family. Yet, being confronted with a different type of gravitation (being literally sunk in water), the protagonists start having considerable difficulty in coping with their everyday life. The family ensemble becomes unstable and its hierarchical structure begins to dissolve. An absurd micro-drama, with slapstick comedy influences, talking about dysfunctions and lack of communication within the social nucleus which the family is supposed to be.

 

Internationally premiered at Berlinale 2011 and screened in prestigious festivals like Sundance, Sarajevo, Namur, Hamburg and many others, STICK CLIMBING is a demonstration of cinematic virtuosity, inviting the audience into a dangerous journey: a contemplative stroll through a village leads to an impossible climbing tour on an almost vertical cliff. The camera seems unimpressed and keeps on filming even during a breakneck ascent which seems to defy gravity. The escape from conformism, from a conventional world might be the main theme of this short film, thought as one 14 minutes long take shot from the point of view of an invisible character. “The moment we come face to face with the cliff is the catch of the film, a form of liberation - unexpected, daring and impossible. In the end, even if we might notice the invisible cuts in the long take, the felling as we look back at the village, from far above, is one of relief and pride." (Andrei Dobrescu, BIEFF 2012)

 

Screened at 32 important international festivals so far (among them, IDFA International Documentary Film Festival Amsterdam, Tampere, Basel, Dresden etc.), BODY TRAIL is based on an outdoor performance which took place in Vienna, when sculptures made of human bodies are placed on the city streets. This multi-layered urban intervention, alternating between surreal humor and dark visions of possible terrorist acts, has been transformed by the two directors, Michael Palm and Willi Dorner, into an entirely unique cinematic experiment. “We see the human body as a tool for experiencing spatial dimensions. Body sculptures, which change and adapt to the environment, create new perspectives and insights into architecture and the city - a conceptual filling of empty urban spaces”, said the two authors of the film.

 

Bucharest International Experimental Film Festival (BIEFF) is organized by the Culture and Image Association, with the support of the National Cinema Centre, the National University of Drama and Film Bucharest, the National Art University, Le Fresnoy National Studio National Des Arts Contemporaines, MNAC National Museum of Contemporary Art Bucharest, Jameson, JTI, Samsung, Romania Film, the Konrad Adenauer Foundation, the Austrian Cultural Forum, Goethe Institute, UNIFRANCE, the French Institute, the Korean Embassy, the Polish Institute, Dacia, Cărturești, ALLTUR, Kraftmark.

 

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