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European Union Film Festival 2007 (open to the public)

What Featuring the finest selection of films from countries of the EU. All films in this festival are uncut.
When 9 May 2007 (Wednesday) - 17 May 2007 (Thursday)
Where Golden Village VivoCity
1 Harbourfront Walk VivoCity, Levels 2 & 3, Singapore 098585 Tel: 6311 9162
Admission

S$9.50 tickets available to the public from 26 April 2007:

S$8.50 discounted tickets available to SFS members and full-time students from 26 April 2007, ONLY at the GV VivoCity box-office. (Please produce a valid SFS membership card or student pass in person. Limited to one discounted ticket per session per membership card or student pass.)

Phone bookings are NOT available for SFS film festivals.

 

 

The 17th European Union Film Festival

"United in Diversity"

Presented by the European Union Cultural Committee and Singapore Film Society


Screening schedule

Sessions start punctually at the stated times (there will be no trailers, unlike normal screenings).

Wed 9 May

7.00pm :: The Secret Life Of Words (Spain) - NC16
9.30pm :: Zelary (Czech Republic) - M18

Thu 10 May

7.00pm :: Coming As A Friend (Greece) - NC16
              (this title will be screened in DVD format)
9.30pm :: The Last Of The High Kings (Ireland) - M18

Fri 11 May

7.00pm :: Dead Man's Hand (Belgium) - NC16
9.30pm :: Manslaughter (Denmark) - M18

Sat 12 May

4.30pm :: Mystery of the Wolf (Finland) - PG
7.00pm :: Vinci (Poland) - PG
9.30pm :: Simon (Netherlands) - R21

Sun 13 May

7.00pm :: Little Jerusalem (France) - M18
9.30pm :: Just Sex And Nothing Else (Hungary) - NC16

Mon 14 May

7.00pm :: Orient Express (Romania) - PG
9.30pm :: Falkenberg Farewell (Sweden) - M18

Tue 15 May

7.00pm :: A Guest Of Life (Hungary) - NC16
9.30pm :: The Alzheimer Case (Belgium) - M18

Wed 16 May

7.00pm :: A Friend Of Mine (Germany) - NC16
9.30pm :: What I'm Doing Here! (Italy) - R21

Thu 17 May

7.00pm :: A Love Divided (Ireland) - PG
9.30pm :: Hot Fuzz (UK) - M18


Please note that age restrictions apply for some of the following ratings:

TBA: To be advised
G:
or General
PG: Parental Guidance required
NC16: No Children below 16 years old
M18: Mature 18 -- restricted to persons 18 years old and above
R21: Restricted to persons 21 years old and above

 


The Films

 


The Secret Life Of Words (La Vida Secreta De Las Palabras)

NC16 – Some nudity
Directed by Isabel Coixet, Spain, 2005, 115 minutes
Cast: Sarah Polley, Tim Robbins, Tim Robbins

On an oil rig at an isolated spot in the middle of the sea, where all the workers are men, there has been an accident. A solitary, mysterious woman (Sarah Polley), who is trying to forget her past, is brought to the rig to look after a man (Tim Robbins) who has been temporarily blinded. A strange intimacy develops between them, full of secrets, truths, lies, humour and pain, from which neither of them will emerge unscathed and which will change their lives forever. THE SECRET LIFE OF WORDS is a film about the weight of the past; the sudden silence before a storm; 25 million waves; a Spanish cook (Javier Cámara), and a goose. And, above all else, the power of love even in the most terrible circumstances.

Awards

Goya, European Film Academy, Cinema Writers Circle (Spain)

Festivals

Sundance, Venice, Tokyo, Belfast



Zelary

M18 – Intimate scenes
Directed by Ondrej Trojan, Czech Republic, 2004, 148 minutes
Cast: Ana Geislerova, György Cserhalmi, Jaroslava Adamova, Miroslav Donutil.

It is the 1940s and the Czech lands have been occupied by the Nazis. Eliska is a young nurse in a city hospital, unable to complete medical school because the Germans have closed the universities. She is also involved in the resistance movement along with her lover, the surgeon Richard, and their friend Dr Chladek. One night, a man from a rural mountain area is brought to the hospital with serious injuries and desperately needs a transfusion. Eliska is the only one with the same blood type. Her blood saves his life and a connection is formed between the two that, in the course of the story, becomes an extraordinarily strong relationship between the modern, cosmopolitan, educated Eliska and the barbaric, salt of the earth Joza with the soul of a child.

Festivals

Nominated for the Best Foreign Film Oscar in 2004.



Coming As A Friend (Ki An Figo ... Tha Xanartho)

NC16 – Some coarse language
Directed by Dora Masklavanou, Greece, 2006, 90 minutes
Cast: Yannis Stankoglou, Maria Kechagioglou, Meletis Georgiadis, Giorgos Tsoularis

Note: This title will be screened in DVD format

Dora Maskalavanou's second feature film, after TOMORROW IS ANOTHER DAY (KI AVRIO MERA EINAI), is a story about trust. A small-time crook, who is released from prison, meets a woman who lives "imprisoned" on a mountain, making coal. She has come to terms with her hard life and her solitude. He is faced with his need to start a new life. In each other's deep, true desire, they both recognise their own. But in order to be together they can trust no other. Two people who fall in love are enough for a world, and certainly for a film, to exist. COMING AS A FRIEND made its debut at the Thessaloniki Film Festival, where it was warmly received by critics and audiences alike. It also participated in the "Festival of Festivals" programme at the 30th Cairo International Film Festival.

Festivals

Thessaloniki Film Festival; 30th Cairo International Film Festival



The Last Of The High Kings

M18 – Sexual scene
Directed by David Keating, Ireland, 1995, 95 minutes
Cast: Jared Letto, Gabriel Byrne, Catherine O'Hara, Colm Meaney, Christina Ricci, Stephen Rea, Lorraine Pilkington

The year is 1977, the place is Dublin, and the music is Thin Lizzy.  Based on Ferdia MacAnna's novel of the same name, THE LAST OF THE HIGH KINGS tells the story of Frankie, who is convinced he's going to fail his school exams and that all his dreams will be on the scrap heap. He becomes increasingly obsessed with two girls, Jayne Wayne and Romy Casey, but the most powerful woman in his life is his mother, a Celtic Warrior Queen who tells her children they are descended from the High Kings of Ireland. On his bedroom wall, Frankie marks the days remaining until the dreaded arrival of his exam results, when his life will end. In truth, Frankie is smart, gifted, courageous, and very attractive to the opposite sex.  Gradually he realizes this and relaxes a little as he sees an exciting life ahead of him - and that's what this summer is all about.



Dead Man's Hand (Petites Misères)

NC16 – Sexual references
Directed by Philippe Boon and Laurent Brandenbourger, Belgium, 2002, 81 minutes
Cast: Albert Dupontel, Serge Larivière, Marie Trintignant, Bouli Lanners

In this little tale about confusion, consumption and guilt, Jean (Albert Dupontel) works as a bailiff. He is strict about his job and takes it seriously, despite stretching the rules from time to time with his accomplice, Georges (Serge Larivière). His beautiful wife, Nicole (Marie Trintignant), who is a compulsive buyer spending his hard-earned money, is having an affair with Georges, who is debt-ridden and addicted to tele-shopping. Life turns into a nightmare for Jean when he is set up in the company of Eddy (Bouli Lanners), a clumsy yet compassionate cop. Consumed by guilt and confusion, Jean witnesses, helpless, the awakening of a tiger ... wearing glasses!



Manslaughter (Drabet)

M18 – Sexual scenes
Directed by Per Fly, Denmark, 2005, 103 minutes
Cast: Jesper Christensen, Beate Bille, Charlotte Fich, Pernilla August

Carsten, a 50-year-old high-school teacher, is having an affair with Pil, a much younger woman who is politically active. Carsten's wife, Nina, wants a divorce. Pil is involved in a political action that results in the death of a policeman. Suddenly, Carsten's neat, structured life spins out of control. Variety.com reviewer Deborah Young praises the film as being "driven by a strong narrative backed by assured filming and acting", and says that the film confirms Per Fly as a major Scandinavian director "capable of addressing social and moral issues through emotional writing. As in his previous work, focus is on the individual flaying about in a sticky web woven partly by society and partly by his own bad choices ... Concealment and guilt provide the main thematic ballast."



Mystery Of The Wolf (Suden Arvoitus)

PG
Directed by Raimo O. Niemi, Finland, 2006, 95 minutes
Cast: Tiia Talvisara, Janne Saksela, Vuokko Hovatta, Peter Franzén

Twelve-year-old Salla loves nature and enjoys the wilderness, where she feels at home. She lives with her adoptive parents in a small village, where her father works as a policeman. One day, Salla's biological mother, Laila, returns to the village after a ten-year absence, upsetting the inhabitants and even scaring many of them. The adventure starts when Salla rescues two wolf cubs from poachers. Though an endangered species, wolves are also a threat to the local livelihood, reindeer husbandry. The hiding and rescuing of the cubs from the poacher, Venesmaa, becomes a mission during which Salla has to trust her instinct, her best friend, and even her long lost mother. A Finnish-Swedish-UK co-production, MYSTERY OF THE WOLF is a family film, an exciting adventure in the wilderness of Finnish Lapland.



Vinci

PG
Directed by Juliusz Machulski, Poland, 2004, 108 minutes
Cast: Robert Wieckiewicz, Borys Szyc, Kamilla Baar, Jan Machulski

Having botched a heist, Tsuma is doing time in jail. All of a sudden, he is temporarily released without having even applied for it. Now he has two months to recover from his ailments, long enough to pull off the heist of the century. What he needs is a plan, a partner, and money. Just this last time. Julian, known as Hornet before he settled down to an honest job, cannot escape his past and his obligations as a friend to Tsuma. Painter Hagen is second to none when it comes to differentiating between a copy and an original. Magda, about to graduate from a conservatory, is given an offer that is as unexpected as it is fascinating. VINCI's accolades include the Silver Ticket Award in Poland, for high box office returns.

Awards

Silver Ticket Award in Poland, for high box office returns.



Simon

R21 – Mature contents
Directed by Eddy Terstall, The Netherlands, 2004, 104 minutes
Cast: Cees Geel, Marcel Hensema, Dirk Zeelenberg, Nadja Hüpscher, Rifka Lodeizen, Johnny de Mol, Maria Kooistra, Daan Ekkel

When Camiel, a gay dentist, meets Simon, a carefree café owner, in a car accident, their lives become intrinsically entwined. Their friendship develops as the light-hearted Simon introduces Camiel to his hedonistic lifestyle. But this new friendship is soon ended when Camiel drunkenly sleeps with Simon's girlfriend, Sharon. Fourteen years later, the two of them are reunited, but Simon has cancer. Simon's family and friends are thrown into emotional turmoil by his decision to opt for legal euthanasia, but he never loses his sense of humour. After staying alive to be a witness at Camiel's wedding, Simon prepares to die, surrounded and supported by the people he loves and who love him. Winner of 4 Golden Calves, SIMON is a life-affirming story of friendship and family.

Awards

Winner of 4 Golden Calves.



Little Jerusalem (La Petite Jérusalem)

M18 – Some sexual scenes
Directed by Karin Albou, France, 2005, 97 minutes
Cast: Fanny Valette, Hedi Tillette de Clermont-Tonnerre, Elsa Zylberstein, Bruno Todeschini

With frankness, sympathy, and excellent cinematography, LITTLE JERUSALEM reflects on two sisters in Sarcelles, in a drab Parisian suburb called home by an enclave of orthodox Jewish immigrants. Laura (Fanny Valette) is inclined toward the secular; she is cynical, a student of philosophy and falling in love with an Algerian named Djamel (Hedi Tillette de Clermont-Tonnerre). Her sister, Mathilde (Elsa Zylberstein), is devout, but conflicted by dual fidelities to God and husband (Bruno Todeschini). The latter is no longer faithful. Writer-director Karin Albou opens up the intimate physical and psychological spaces of these two strong women.



Just Sex And Nothing Else (Csak Szex És Más Semmi)

NC16 – Scene of intimacy and some nudity
Directed by Krisztina Goda, Hungary, 2005, 90 minutes
Cast: Judit Schell, Sándor Csányi, Kata Dobó, Zoltán Seress, Antal Czapkó

Variety.com reviewer Eddie Cockrell writes, "Thirty-three-year-old theatre dramaturg Dora (Judit Schell) meets ... swaggering actor Tamas (ubiquitous KONTROLL star Sándor Csányi) when she's forced to a window ledge by the sudden arrival of her current lover's wife. As exasperated Dora tells actress chum Zsofi (Kata Dobó), she wants a kid but as for the guy, it's just sex and nothing else. As she sorts things out with Tamas by way of composer Peter (Zoltán Seress) and Turkish counterman Ali (Antal Czapkó), laughs are plentiful as the troupe grapples with her translation of Dangerous Liaisons ... Witty dialogue is delivered briskly by easy-on-the-eyes cast, with Károly Gesztesi a hoot as play's blustery helmer ... presents a sophisticated, picturesque Budapest."



Orient Express

PG
Directed by Sergiu Nicolaescu, Romania, 2004, 115 minutes
Cast: Sergiu Nicolaescu, Gheorghe Dinica, Maia Morgenstern

The narrative of this film has two different timelines. One sphere of action takes place between 1911 and 1916, when Romanian Prince Andrei Morudzi is going to Paris and Monte Carlo, where he is losing all his fortune with women, parties, and the like. The other sphere shows the Prince as an elderly person, isolated in his Romanian castle, trying, from time to time, to integrate himself into the local society, without success. A young lady falls in love with him, but he sees her as a child; a major drama ensues and he is unjustly considered guilty by the people. The Orient Express is a train connecting Istambul (known today as Istanbul) with Paris, crossing the land of the Prince and reminding him about his adventurous youth.



Falkenberg Farewell (Farväl Falkenberg)

M18 – Nudity
Directed by Jesper Ganslandt, Sweden, 2006, 88 minutes
Cast: Holger Eriksson, John Axel Eriksson, Jörgen Svensson, David Johnson, Jesper Gansladt

It's the last summer in small town Falkenberg. Five childhood friends have become young men. David and Holger are two best friends who escape to the forest and to the ocean, away from the future. Jesper constantly returns home without anybody really noticing that he's been gone. Jörgen finances his catering company, ‘Breakfast in Bed', by burglarizing houses. And John is always in a bad mood. The future looms at the horizon, but not for all of them. There is something refreshingly new about FALKENBERG FAREWELL. It has a minimalist style, shot over one summer, featuring non-professional actors, using improvised dialogue. It is a film about friendship and memories and a final farewell to the little town by the sea.



A Guest Of Life – Alexander Csoma De Körös (Az Élet Vendége – Csoma-Legendárium)

NC16 – Some nudity
Directed by Tibor Szemzö, Hungary, 2006, 79 minutes
Cast: Susannah York, Mari Törócsik

A GUEST OF LIFE is inspired by the journey of Alexander Csoma de Körös, who set out from his native Transylvania to central Asia on foot, taking only his knowledge of 13 languages with him. Seeking ancestors of Hungarians, he stayed in Tibet once he reached there, compiling an English-Tibetan dictionary, translating and abridging Buddhist teachings and literature, including the Book of the Dead. The film is a beautiful collection of impressions of Tibet, recorded on an 8mm camera, overlaid with excerpts from Csoma's diary and translations, spoken in the many languages familiar to Csoma. Intercut with the documentary-style footage are animated segments, which tell Transylvanian folktales woven around the legendary figure of Csoma. (Adapted from a summary written by Anna Patai on The Internet Movie Database.)



The Alzheimer Case (De Zaak Alzheimer)

M18 – Nudity
Directed by Erik Van Looy, Belgium, 2003, 120 minutes
Cast: Koen de Bouw, Werner De Smedt, Jan Decleir

When a key civil servant is murdered, the Antwerp police force puts its top crime investigators, Vincke (Koen de Bouw) and Verstruyft (Werner De Smedt), on the case. The trail leads to hitman Angelo Ledda (Jan Decleir). Showing symptoms of Alzheimer's disease, Ledda finds it increasingly difficult to carry out assignments. When he discovers that he is being used in a political power game, he decides to bite the hand that feeds him. Vincke and Verstruyft have a hard time trying to disentangle the web of intrigue, settlements and networks, in order to prevent further killings.

Festivals

2004: Berlin, Cannes; Belgium's entry to the Oscars.



A Friend Of Mine (Ein Freund Von Mir)

NC16 – Some nudity
Directed by Sebastian Schipper, Germany, 2006, 84 minutes
Cast: Daniel Brühl, Jürgen Vogel, Sabine Timoteo

Karl and Hans couldn't be more different. Karl is a young mathematician with a promising career at an insurance company, whereas Hans, the man-about-town,  only takes up the odd job to get by. When they meet, Hans asks Karl whether he is happy. Karl doesn't know what to reply until Hans shows him what makes him happy: girls, airplanes, the fastest backward-driving car in the world, and driving a Porsche at night in the nude along the Autobahn, for instance. For Hans "friendship" means to share everything, even Stelle, the queen of his heart. This is too much for Karl. But then, you can't just get rid of a friend like Hans, and a woman like Stelle is unforgettable.

Festivals

Hamburg (2006, Opening Film); Göteborg (2007); Berlin (2007; German Cinema).



What I'm Doing Here! (Ma Che Ci Faccio Qui!)

R21 - Sexual scenes
Directed by Francesco Amato, Italy, 2006, 92 minutes
Cast: Maico Alberelli, Lidia Annechiarico, Adriana Ascari, Gianfranco Barra, Chiara Nicola (Annecy Cinema Italien 2006 Best Actress award winner)

A lively comedy about the plucky Alessio, whose plans to travel around Europe on an inter-rail pass with his pals evaporate when he flunks his senior year in high school. To escape summer school, he bolts from his middle-class Roman home and finds himself living a completely different kind of lifestyle as he winds up waiting tables in a low-class bathing establishment on one of Italy's southern beaches. Contrasting two very different strata of Italian society, director Amato recounts Alessio's unconventional summer with verve and offbeat humour.

Awards

Annecy Cinema Italien 2006 Best Actress award - Chiara Nicola



A Love Divided

PG
Directed by Sydney Macartney, Ireland, 1999, 95 minutes
Cast: Liam Cunningham, Orla Brady, Tony Doyle, Sarah Bolger

Set in a seaside town in 1950's Ireland, this is the passionate story of love that is challenged by the dogma of an insular society. Based on an actual event, this film explores the shattering impact of one woman's decision to stand up for her principles. Sheila, a young Protestant woman, marries her true love, Catholic farmer Sean Cloney, and they take the "Ne Temere" pledge to bring up their children as Catholics. Father Stafford, the local parish priest, exerts pressure on Sean to send their children to the local Catholic school. Sheila resists, leaves the country and seeks refuge in a remote Scottish village - putting their commitment to one another to the ultimate test.



Hot Fuzz

M18 - Violence
Directed by Edgar Wright, United Kingdom, 2007, 121 minutes
Cast: Simon Pegg, Nick Frost, Jim Broadbent, Timothy Dalton, Paddy Considine, Bill Nighy.

An action-packed new comedy from the makers of SHAUN OF THE DEAD. Nicholas Angel is the finest police officer London has to offer, with an arrest record 400% higher than anyone else. His superiors post him to the sleepy and seemingly crime-free village of Sandford. With garden fêtes and neighbourhood watch meetings replacing the action of the city, Angel struggles to adapt, and finds himself partnered with Danny Butterman, an oafish but well-meaning young constable. A series of grisly accidents convinces Angel that Sandford may not be as idyllic as it seems. Is he losing his mind, or is something far more sinister at work?