Open Seas is a section full of masterpieces that will undeniably influence film lovers attending RIFF 2017. These films have won even awards around the world; A Ciambra won the Europea Cinemas Label Award, Charlotte Rampling won Volpi Cup as best actress for her role in Hannah, The House by the Sea was nominated for the Golden Lion in Venice and Agnes Varda and JR were awarded the Golden Eye at Cannes for Faces Places. RIFF will also screen Looking for Oum Kulthum by Shirin Neshaz who was RIFF’s honorary guest in 2008.
Agnès Varda & JR / FRA 2017/ 89 min
Screenings: H1, Oct. 1, 16:45 / HB2, Oct. 5, 19:00 / H1, Oct. 8, 16:45
Agnès Varda and JR have things in common: their passion for images. Agnès chose cinema. JR chose to create open-air photographic galleries. When Agnès and JR met in 2015, they immediately decided to shoot a film together in France, far from the cities. The film won the Golden Eye award in Cannes.
Borg vs. Mcenroe
Janus Metz / SWE, DNK, FIN 2017/ 100 min
Screenings: HB1, Oct. 7, 18:00
In 1980, the world is waiting to see the number one tennis player in the world, Björn Borg, claim his fifth Wimbledon title. At only 24, Borg is worn out and ridden with anxiety. Meanwhile his biggest rival, 20 year old John McEnroe, has decided to replace his former hero on the Wimbledon throne. This is the story of two men who became legends and the price they had to pay.
A Violent Life
Thierry de Peretti / FRA 2017/ 107 min
Screenings: H4, Sept. 29, 21:30 / HB3, Oct. 6, 18:45 (Q&A) / HB2, Oct. 8, 16:45 (Q&A)
Despite the death threat hanging on his head, Stéphane decides to return to Corsica to attend the funeral of his best friend, Christophe, murdered the day before. It’s an opportunity for Stéphane to reminisce about the events that led him, a cultured petty bourgeois from Bastia, to move from small crime onto political radicalization and the underground movement.
Jhonny Hendrix Hinestroza / COL, NOR, ARG, CUB, DEU 2017/ 88 min
Screenings: HB1, Oct. 1, 15:00 / HB1, Oct. 3, 17:15 / HB3, Oct. 7, 19:15
The ‘90s. Cuba is drowning in hunger, cigars and rum. In this grim landscape, the life of Candelaria and Victor Hugo, a couple who stayed together out of inertia, takes a surprising turn the day Candelaria finds a video camera.
Looking for Oum Kulthum
Shirin Neshat / DEU, AUT, ITA, LBN, QAT 2017/ 90 min
Screenings: HB2, Sept. 30, 19:45 / HB2, Oct. 2, 21:00 / HB1, Oct. 8, 15:00
Mitra embarks on her dream project of making a film about the legendary Egyptian singer Oum Kulthum. Her film explores the struggles, sacrifices and the price of Oum Kulthum’s success as a female artist in a male dominated society.
Leonardo Di Costanzo / ITA 2017/ 95 min
Screenings: HB1, Oct. 1, 21:45 / HB1, Oct. 4, 17:15 / HB1, Oct. 7, 22:15
Naples today. Giovanna, a dedicated social worker, runs a reception shelter for disadvantaged children, genuine rampart against the Camorra’s stranglehold. When young Maria, wife of a Camorra member on the run, comes to settle on the premises of the shelter with her two kids, Giovanna is confronted with a moral choice.
Constantin Popescu / ROU, FRA 2017/ 152 min
Screenings: HB4, Oct. 1, 20:15 / HB4, Oct. 4, 19:45 / HB3, Oct. 8, 13:15
Cristina and Tudor live happily with their two children, Maria (5) and Ilie (7). They’re in their thirties and live in a nice apartment in a Romanian town. They live the life of an ordinary couple with their children. One day Maria disappears. An event that will abruptly change their lives forever.
Andrea Pallaoro / ITA, FRA 2017 / 95 min
Screenings: HB2, Oct. 2, 18:45 / HB4, Oct. 4, 17:30 / HB2, Oct. 7, 18:00
Hannah is left alone grappling with the consequences of her husband’s imprisonment and begins to unravel. The film investigates modern day alienation, the struggle to connect, and the dividing lines between individual identity, personal relationships, and societal pressures. Charlotte Rampling won the Volpi Cup for Best Actress.
The House by the Sea
Robert Guédiguian / ROU, FRA 2017/ 107 min
Screenings: HB1, Sept. 28, 20:00 / HB2, Oct. 3, 22:00 / HB2, Oct. 8, 19:15
Three grown children gather at the picturesque villa of their dying father to reflect on where they are, who they have become, and what they have inherited. The film was nominated for the Golden Lion at the Venice Film Festival in 2017.
Jonas Carpignano / ITA, FRA, USA, SWE 2017/ 120 min
Screenings:HB3, Sept. 30, 15:00 / HB1, Oct. 4, 19:15 / HB3, Oct. 8, 21:15
In A Ciambra, Romani community, Pio follows his older brother Cosimo, learning the necessary skills for life on the streets. When Cosimo disappears and things start to go wrong, Pio sets out to prove he’s ready to step into his brother’s shoes but soon finds himself faced with an impossible decision. At Cannes it won the Europa Cinemas Label Award 2017.