BFI London Film Festival 2016

Apologies for the lack of update the past few weeks, but I was in London attending the 60th edition of the BFI London Film Festival. I was in my happy place, in a film festival bubble watching films from morning till night and just didn't have a chance to share daily updates as I orginally intended to. 

This year's edition included 249 features, 145 shorts of which 62 features and 59 shorts were made by female directors. Was also glad to see lots of the films focusing on female characters.

As for Arab films, there were 17 18 films in total taking part in several categories of the festival: 

Official Competition:
- Clash by Mohamed Diab
- Layla M. by Dutch director Mijke de Jong 

First Feature Competition
- Divines by Moroccan director Houda Benyamina
- Hedi by Tunisian director Mohamed Ben Attia 

Documentary Competition
- The War Show by Danish director Andreas Dalsgaard and Syrian radio host and director Obaidah Zytoon (Syria)

- A Day For Women by Egyptian filmmaker Kamla Abouzekri
- Farouk, Besieged Like Me by Syrian documentarian Hala Alabdalla
- In the Last Days of the City by Egyptian director Tamer al-Saeed
- 9 Days - From My Window In Aleppo by Syrian photographer Issa Touma, and Dutch directors Floor van der Meulen and Thomas Vroege (short film) 
- Battalion to My Beat by Japanese filmmaker Eimi Imanishi (short film)
- Noor at Mytilini Port by Irish director Treasa O'Brien (short film)

- Barakah Meets Barakah by Saudi filmmaker Mahmoud Sabbagh
- Tickling Giants by American filmmaker Sara Taksler

- Goodbye, Bonaparte by Egyptian director Youssef Chahine

- Mimosas by Spanish director Oliver Laxe
- Tramontane by Lebanese director Vatche Boulghourjian

- In the Future, They Ate From the Finest Porcelain by Larissa Sansour and Soren Lind

- The Worthy by Emirati filmmaker Ali F. Mostafa   

Below is a list of films I watched (60 in total, including 9 short films), rated in order of preference. I'm aiming to discuss some of the films that left an impression on my, either here on the blog, or on the Tea With Culture podcast, so watch this space. 


The Bacchus Lady

Certain Women

United States of Love

Aquarius, Dir. Kleber Mendonça Filho
The Bacchus Lady, Dir.  E J-yong
Certain Women, Dir. Kelly Reichardt
Dawson City: Frozen Time, Dir. Bill Morrison
Moonlight, Dir. Barry Jenkins
A Quiet Passion, Dir. Terence Davies
United States of Love, Dir. Tomasz Wasilewski   

Ascent, Dir. Fiona Tan
Born in Flames, Dir. Lizzie Borden (1991) (35mm)
Blue Velvet Revisited, Dir. Peter Braatz
Daughters of the Dust, Dir. Julie Dash (1991)
Elle, Dir. Paul Verhoeven
The Eyes of My Mother, Dir. Nicolas Pesce
The Handmaiden, Dir. Park Chan-wook
Hospital, Dir. Frederick Wiseman (1969) (35mm)
Memories of Underdevelopment, Dir. Tomás Gutiérrez Alea (1968) (35mm)
Nocturama, Dir. Bertrand Bonello
One-Eyed Jacks, Dir. Marlon Brando (1961)
Personal Shopper, Dir. Olivier Assayas
Raw, Dir. Julia Ducournau
Rolls and Shutters, Dir. Stina Wirfelt (part of The Past is Present Too shorts)
Sea of Clouds, Dir. George Clark (part of The Past is Present Too shorts) 
Starless Dreams, Dir. Mehrdad Oskouei
Toni Erdmann, Dir. Maren Ade
The Untamed, Dir. Amat Escalante
Voyage of Time: Life's Journey, Dir. Terrence Malick
A Woman Returns From a Journey, Dir. Ruth Novaczek (part of Hollywood Disections shorts)
Your Name, Dir. Makoto Shinkai
Zoology, Dir. Ivan I. Tverdovsky 

The B-Side: Elsa Dorfman’s Portrait Photography, Dir. Errol Morris
BoF, Dir. David Leister (part of Hollywood Disections shorts)
Callback, Dir. Carles Torras
Creepy, Dir. Kiyoshi Kurosawa
A Day For Women, Dir. Kamla Abouzekri
Don't Blink - Robert Frank, Dir. Laura Israel
The Eagle Huntress, Dir. Otto Bell
Exprmntl, Dir. Brecht Debackere
Farouk, Besieged Like Me, Dir. Hala Alabdalla   
The Innocents, Dir. Anne Fontaine
Into the Forest, Dir. Gilles Marchand
Juke – Passages from the Films of Spencer Williams, Dir. Thom Andersen (part of Hollywood
Disections shorts)
Kate Plays Christine, Dir. Robert Greene
Kills on Wheels, Dir. Attila Till
Lake Bodom, Dir. Taneli Mustonen
Lovesong, Dir. So Yong Kim
The Man from Hong Kong, Dir. Karen Yasinsky (part of Hollywood Disections shorts)
The Ornithologist, Dir. João Pedro Rodrigues
The Sea is History, Dir. Louis Henderson (part of The Past is Present Too shorts)
Souvenir, Dir. Bavo Defurne
Stockholm My Love, Dir. Mark Cousins
The Stopover, Dir. Delphine Coulin, Muriel Coulin
Two Marxists in Hollywood, Dir. Zoe Beloff (part of Hollywood Disections shorts)
Transmission from the Liberated Zones, Dir. Filipa Cesar (part of The Past is Present Too shorts)
What's in the Darkness, Dir. Wang Yichun
Without Name, Dir. Lorcan Finnegan 

The Autopsy of Jane Doe, Dir. André Øvredal
I Had Nowhere To Go, Dir. Douglas Gordon
Sweet Dreams, Dir. Marco Bellocchio

American Honey, Dir. Andrea Arnold
Porto, Dir. Gabe Klinger (35mm)