One of the longest film festivals in the country, if not the longest, the film festival features 23 films focusing on family ties originating from 17 countries such as Austria, Belgium, Bulgaria, Czech Republic, Denmark, France, Germany, Hungary, Italy, Netherlands, Norway, Romania, Slovakia, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland and the United Kingdom. As the Philippine Star puts it, “family is the red thread that ties together the movies of Cine Europa 17.”
“Today, European families come in all shapes and sizes but what remains constant is the strength of familial bonds and the role they play in the rich fabric of our societies,” says Lubomir Frebort, charge d’Affaires of the European Union (EU) Delegation to the Philippines via The Philippine Star. Frebort along with Lala Fojas, Executive Vice President of Shangri-La Plaza and Briccio Santos, Chairman of the Film Development Council of the Philippines together with European Union Member States Ambassadors, consuls and diplomats inaugurated this year’s Cine Europa.
Here is the movie lineup for Cine Europa 17:
- Two-Seater Rocket (Austria)
Manuel goes to great lengths to win the heart of his best friend, Mia, by making her childhood dream come true.
- Everybody Famous (Belgium)
Factory worker Jean Vereecken gets laid off so he kidnaps the country’s top singer Debbie.
- Journey to Jerusalem (Bulgaria)
Two German-Jewish children flee Nazi Germany in the early 1940s to try to escape Palestine via Bulgaria. In a sudden turn of events, they are taken in by a troupe of travelling performers.
- Identity Card (Czech Republic)
A bittersweet comedy about four teenage boys, their friends, parents and lovers.
- The Hunt (Denmark)
A lonely teacher struggling over his son’s custody finds happiness when he falls in love receives good news from his son. But things take a turn for the worse with an innocent, little lie.
- Chinese Puzzle(France)
A 40-year old father’s life gets complicated when the mother of his two kids moves to New York. Since he can’t bear them growing up far away from him, he decides to move in there as well.
- Broken Glass Park (Germany)
Sascha is a 17-year old girl who’s always stuck between rebellion and adjustment to get the most out of life for herself and her two siblings.
- Home from Home (Germany)
After more than 30 years of absence, three Korean women return with their German husbands to their old homeland – a land that is no longer theirs.
- Thorn Castle (Hungary)
An updated version of one of Hungary’s most beloved young adult novels, it is about two boys who come of age one summer in the countryside.
10. Easy! (Italy)
Bruno Beltrame, writer and teacher, has given up on life for a good long time until he has to take care of one of his students, Luca, who happens to be his “secret son.”
11. A Second Childhood (Italy)
Husband and wife Lino and Chicca lead a peaceful married life until Lino becomes inflicted with a degenerative brain disease that affects his memory.
12. Bon Voyage (The Netherlands)
An actress, a writer, a student and a government worker band together in an effort to escape Paris as the Nazis occupy the city.
13. Mister Twister: Class of Fun (The Netherlands)
Sub, a young substitute teacher, earns the affection of his students with his “unique teaching style. This, however, does not sit well with the school rule-obsessed principal.
14. Vegas (Norway)
Thomas, Manrianne and Terje – teenagers with nowhere to go – embark on a journey of love, hate and trust. “No one ends up where they planned, but everyone finds a home.”
15. Child’s Pose (Romania – Opening Film)
2013 Golden Bear Awardee Child’s Pose is based on the sense of loss of parents who have to send their children away – physically and psychologically.
16. The Godmother (Romania)
An American teacher in Bucharest discovers that her husband has been “laundering money for local mobster Spanu, the Madfather.” To fight her family’s enemies, she forms her own mafia and receives help from unusual sources.
17. Love (Slovakia)
18. A Gun in Each Hand (Spain)
A comedy about eight men in their 40s, all with identity crises.
19. The Missing Lynx (Spain)
Clumsy and unlucky Iberian lynx Felix is brought to the animal recovery shelter with his other animal friends. With mysterious animal kidnappings in other national parks and animal preservations, the shelter virtually turns into a prison.
20. Sister (Switzerland)
A drama set at a Swiss ski resort and centered on a boy who supports his sister by stealing from wealthy guests.
21. Planet Ocean (Switzerland / France)
A new cinema adventure with a triple challenge: to change the way we look at oceans, to explain the greatest natural mystery of our planet, and to spark belief in a better and more sustainable world.
22. The Ice Dragon (Sweden)
The great adventure of 11-year old Mik starts when he leaves home to find a new one. Along the way, he learns about whales, fishing, friends and love.
23. Metro Manila (UK)
Oscar and his family flee from their province and move to Manila in search of a better life, but the capital’s bustling intensity overwhelms them as they fall prey to the ill ways and manipulations of its hardened locals.
For the first time, this year’s Cine Europa will also provide venues for educational discussions via the forum on Film Appreciation with film producer and educator Alemberg Ang on September 12, plus a forum on Filipino filmmakers with the EU Cultural officers from Spain, Italy and France on September 20. In conjunction with the said forum, three European-awarded Filipino films will also have their respective special screenings at the Premiere Theater: 1) Magnifico; 2) Norte, Hangganan ng Kasaysayan; and 3) Ang Pagdadalaga ni Maximo Oliveros. These films all portray the similarities between Filipino and European culture.
The venue for the screenings of these local films and forums will be at the Premiere Theatre, Shang Cineplex, Shangri-La Plaza, Mandaluyong City.
“The educational component of the Festival seeks to give young Filipinos considering a career in film, greater insights about the industry and the opportunities for cooperation with their European counterparts,” says Ambassador and Head of the European Union Delegation Guy Ledoux via Rappler.
The educational forums will also hold sessions at the University of San Carlos, Cebu on October 10.
Cine Europa, which started out 17 years ago with exclusive screenings in Manila, will also move to eight key cities following its schedule in Manila:
- Baguio City Cinematheque from September 23- 28
- Iloilo City Cinematheque from September 30 to October 5
- Ayala Center Cinema in Cebu City from October 10 to 12
- Visayas State University in Baybay, Tacloban, Leyte, where special screenings for families affected by Typhoon Haiyan (Yolanda) are also planned from October 21 to 26
- Cinematheque Davao City from October 28 to November 2
- Cinematheque Zamboanga City from November 4 to 9
- Liceo de Cagayan University in Cagayan de Oro City from November 13 to 16
Admission is free for all screenings and all locations for the two-month festival.
Cine Europa 17 is organized by the European Union Cultural Group in Manila and is funded by the European Embassies and Cultural Institutes accredited to the Philippines including the Embassies of Austria, Belgium, Bulgaria, Czech Republic, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Italy, Netherlands, Norway, Romania, Spain, Slovak Republic, Sweden, Switzerland, United Kingdom, the Delegation of the European Union to the Philippines, Alliance Française, British Council, Goethe-Institut, Philippine-Italian Association, and the Instituto Cervantes de Manila with the important contribution of the Film Development Council of the Philippines. Our partners include, the Independent Film Cooperative, the Shangri-La Plaza Mall (Manila), Arts Council of Cebu and Liceo de Cagayan de Oro (Mindanao) and the Visayas State University in Baybay.
*Photos courtesy of Cine Europa Film Festival 2014’s Facebook page.