Subject: Full Programme Announcement Cambridge Film Festival - Press Release

For immediate release


Cambridge, Monday October 1st 2018 - The 38th Cambridge Film Festival (CFF) today announces it’s full programme, featuring a diverse collection of films celebrating cinema in all its forms; films which will engage, entertain and delight, while also addressing some of the most important issues facing the world today. The Festival will run from October 25th to November 1st 2018.

As the UK's 3rd longest running film festival, Cambridge has a strong reputation for presenting an eclectic film programme offering something for everyone. This year’s programme of 160 titles from 44 countries will include UK premieres of new features, classic retrospectives, insightful documentaries, discovery titles, family favourites, and a diverse array of short films.

The very best of both established and emerging filmmaking talent will be celebrated through the Festival’s Gold, Silver and Crystal Punt awards, 3 premiere competitions which forgo the jury system to place the Cambridge audience at the very heart of the Festival competition experience. Previous winners of the Golden Punt best feature award have included Pedro Almodovar (Volver) and Jim Jarmusch (Broken Flowers).

For the first time the entire Festival lineup is divided into thematic sections, encouraging existing audiences to dive deeper into the programme and providing ease of access for first time Festival goers. Alongside opening and closing night Galas, Special Events and touring programmes, CFF will present an exciting collection of exceptional cinema from around the globe under the headings; International Festival Highlights, Preview Heaven, Longing & Belonging, World Documentaries, New Fiction From Women Directors, Austrian Focus, Restorations & Rediscoveries, Horror, Human Rights, Camera Catalonia, Cambridge African Film Festival, Microcinema, ShortFusion & Family Film Festival. These diverse strands are home to not only the highest creative achievements in film making but also a host of feature premieres, with 4 World and 18 UK premieres gracing this year’s Cambridge Film Festival, alongside the UK premieres of a further 17 Short Films.

The 38th Cambridge Film Festival will open on the 25th October 2018 with a gala screening of the much delayed and highly anticipated, Terry Gilliam magnum opus THE MAN WHO KILLED DON QUIXOTE. In this modern and satirical twist on the classic tale, disillusioned advertising executive Toby (Adam Driver) returns to Spain, where he shot his graduation film. He discovers that the man he employed to play the role of Don Quixote (Jonathan Pryce) has spent the intervening years believing that he really is Don Quixote, who soon becomes convinced that Toby is his trusted Sancho Panza. The pair embark on a bizarre journey, jumping back and forth in time between the 21st and magical 17th century.

The Festival closes on November 1st with the powerful and urgently relevant MONSTERS AND MEN, the debut feature from award winning director Reinaldo Marcus Green. This film presents a ripple-effect narrative of the police killing of a black man: from an eyewitness who captures the shooting on his phone, and an African-American police office battling with his conscience, to a local high school student who transforms from passive bystander to vehement activist. Shot in Brooklyn, this timely and vital film features John David Washington (BlacKkKlansman), up-and-coming actor Kelvin Harrison Jr. (Mudbound), and star of Broadway’s Hamilton, Anthony Ramos.

Alongside the opening and closing galas the Festival will screen an impressive collection of award-winning films from festivals around Europe including: Hirokazu Kore-eda’s Palme d’or winning SHOPLIFTERS, the story of a family surviving through a life of petty crime on the fringes of urban Japanese society; and the Berlin Film Festival’s Golden & Silver Bear winning films TOUCH ME NOT and MUG, both of which approach powerful and intimate stories in very different ways. These winners are supported by three further Cannes favourites; Ali Abbasi’s Nordic folklore reboot BORDER which was awarded the Un Certain Regard prize; Lee Chang-dong’s audacious tale of class and sexual longing BURNING; and legendary filmmaker Jean-Luc Godard’s ferociously challenging and provocative THE IMAGE BOOK, which will screen alongside the director’s 1963 masterpiece LE MÉPRIS. Rounding off the International Festival Highlights is the compelling and crowd pleasing winner of the Rotterdam Film Festival Audience Award, THE GUILTY.

Alongside the array of award-winning features from Europe’s major festivals, CFF has a reputation for presenting previews of some of the biggest and best films in the world, often months before they receive theatrical releases. 2018’s programme of previews is no exception: headlining is the “final” acting performance of bona fide hollywood legend Robert Redford, alongside Sissy Spacek, Casey Affleck and Danny Glover in David Lowery’s THE OLD MAN AND THE GUN. The all-star lineups continue with Oscar Isaac, Olivia Wilde, Olivia Cooke and a stunning turn from Antonio Banderas in the pan-generational family epic LIFE ITSELF; the latest work from two-time Oscar nominee Gus Van Sant DON’T WORRY THEY WON’T GET FAR ON FOOT starring Joaquin Phoenix, Rooney Mara and Jonah Hill; Steve Carell in a career-best performance, alongside Timothée Chalamet in BEAUTIFUL BOY; Maggie Gyllenhaal as a teacher who becomes obsessed with protecting a poetry prodigy in THE KINDERGARTEN TEACHER; and Keira Knightley alongside Dominic West in the timely film about the life of groundbreaking French novelist COLETTE.

Themes of family, love and community are addressed in Longing & Belonging, be it the cloistered tribal communities of Northern Columbia in the mafia epic BIRDS OF PASSAGE; the ethnic community of the Bakhtiari people of southwest Iran, seen through the eyes of a young boy on a mission to save a stray goat in THE SKIER; or the intimate family comedy of I LOVE MY MUM. These sit alongside the slow moving suspense thriller YOU GO TO MY HEAD; Oscar winning director Laszlo Nemes’ (Son of Saul) latest feature SUNSET; a unique romantic tale addressing the complexities of gender identity ROOBHA; one of the most moving melodramas of recent years WHERE I NEVER LIVED starring Emmanuelle Devos; and the sparkling return to form of director Laurent Cantet (The Class) with a drama set at a summer writing workshop in the South of France, THE WORKSHOP.

Global and personal real-life perspectives from all over the film making world are represented in World Documentaries, including; the most extraordinary saga of Jewish history you’ve never heard of in FROM CAIRO TO THE CLOUD - THE WORLD OF THE CAIRO GENIZA; an epic road movie and unexpected Odyssey into the Far East of Mongolia and Japan EASTERN MEMORIES; and the history of the Northern Irish Troubles and the story of a son’s search for his father, woven together in Donal Foreman’s THE IMAGE YOU MISSED. During the 1920’s and 30’s the Marquis De Wavrin was the first westerner to encounter many of the Amazonian Indians - MARQUIS DE WAVRIN: FROM THE MANOR TO THE JUNGLE uses the 6,000 meters of footage he filmed to tell the compelling story of both the Marquis and the tribes’ people; Danish filmmaker and artist Lasse Lauhas’ sensitive film about the complex relationship between Denmark and Greenland THE RAVEN AND THE SEAGULL; the question of whether general artificial intelligence will render humanity obsolete is addressed in MORE HUMAN THAN HUMAN; arriving at CFF with top honours at CPH:DOX THE RAFT tells the story of a scientific study of violence, aggression, sex and group behaviour which, in 1973, saw five men and six women sail across the Atlantic on a raft. The intensely powerful stories continue with MALCOLM IS A LITTLE UNWELL, an astonishing documentary chronicling the descent into madness of award-winning BBC foreign correspondent Malcolm Brabant after he receives a routine yellow fever vaccine; AMÉRICA which tells the poignant story of three brothers forced to care for their 93 year old grandmother in southwest Mexico; and the surprising and empathetic FOR THE BIRDS, which follows an unusual woman named Kathy who lives with 200 pet chickens, ducks, geese and turkeys.

CFF boasts a proud tradition of profiling the work of the very best female directors from around the world. In bare statistical terms 42% of the titles in this year’s programme are directed or co-directed by women. For feature films the figure is 36%. Up from 30% and 25% in 2017.

Chair of the organising Cambridge Film Trust Isabelle McNeil said,

“While the film industry as a whole still has a lot to do in facing up to the issue of representation both onscreen and behind the camera, it is vital for festivals like Cambridge to play our role in bringing diverse perspectives to the public. As an organisation and a festival we are proud to be leading the way. Sourcing great films by female directors is not challenging if you are paying attention. Research has shown that female-directed films tend to be more popular with audiences and critics, but women’s films continue to be underfunded. We all need to recognise the amazing creative talent already working in film as well as encouraging new voices.”

3 DAYS IN QUIBERON charts a brief period in the life of Romy Schneider at a time when she was the biggest female star in Europe; the acutely observed and unsentimental debut feature from Ioana Uricaru LEMONADE shines an uncompromising light on the American dream; NANCY starring Andrea Riseborough and Steve Buscemi is a provocative psychodrama about love, intimacy, and trust; SHOCK WAVES – DIARY OF MY MIND tells the story of a creative writing teacher whose life changes when one of her pupils murders his parents; HAPPY AS LAZZARO is a magical portrait of the birth of modern Italy while THE CHAOTIC LIFE OF NADA KADIĆ draws a much more intimate portrait, focusing on the relationship between a mother and her young daughter.

A partnership between Cambridge Film Festival and Cambridge-based Adder Technology creates an interesting juxtaposition pairing cutting edge technology with films from the very birth of cinema.

Spotlight on Lois Weber (a strand with live accompaniment by famed musicians Neil Brand and John Sweeney) focuses on a woman who more than 100 years ago was one of Hollywood’s most prominent and highly paid directors. From 1915, THE DUMB GIRL OF PORTICI was the first Hollywood blockbuster directed by a woman; THE BLOT is a sharply scripted drama full of pathos and humour while SHOES is both a remarkably sophisticated slice of storytelling and a fascinating time capsule of urban working-class life in 1916. Screening alongside SHOES will be mini thriller SUSPENSE which in 1913 pioneered the use of split screen.

Beyond the Lois Weber retrospective there is a wide range of rediscovery titles, from Jean Epstein’s 1926 spooky masterpiece THE FALL OF THE HOUSE OF USHER with accompaniment from Stephen Horne; to Margarethe von Trotta’s riveting introduction to one of cinema’s true greats SEARCHING FOR INGMAR BERGMAN, which will screen alongside the master filmmaker’s seminal work THE SEVENTH SEAL. Maybe more relevant today than when it was made ALL THE PRESIDENT’S MEN dramatises the events of Washington’s most famous scandal; while the newly restored FAIL SAFE is a political thriller of a different kind which focuses on the threat of nuclear war. A new restoration of Billy Wilder’s comic masterpiece SOME LIKE IT HOT promises an utterly joyous big screen experience; Lindsay Anderson’s biting satire on public school life IF will be presented with an accompanying Q&A with actor David Wood while the uniquely entertaining show for kids of all ages COMEDY FOR KIDS WITH NEIL BRAND celebrates some of the greatest comics in silent cinema all accompanied by Neil, the fastest pianist in the business.

The work of four of Austria’s most exciting filmmakers is presented in Austrian Focus; the beautifully judges performances of the two leads in Ludwig Wust’s DEPARTURE make it a film not to be missed; Katharina Mückstein’s L’ANIMALE tells the story of Mati a girl who wants to be one of the boys in the gang; GWENDOLYN is a fascinating documentary about a 63 year old three time world champion weightlifter determined to regain her crown after battling cancer, while THE WALDHEIM WALTZ is Ruth Beckermann’s shocking and suspenseful account of Kurt Waldheim’s controversial campaign to become President of Austria in 1986.

Falling a little later in the autumn this year, Cambridge Film Festival takes place over Halloween and will feature a collection of horror films from the furthest reaches of the globe; from Cuba comes the UK premiere of IS THAT YOU the psychological horror debut feature from Rudy Riverón Sánchez; Canada provides ISABELLE starring Adam Brody and Amanda Crew (Silicon Valley) as an all American couple who move into a new neighborhood and are confronted by an evil presence that wants nothing more than their very lives; on the closing night of the Festival the latest film from Luca Guadagnino (director of Call Me By Your Name), SUSPIRIA is a thrilling remake of Dario Argento’s 1977 Italian horror masterpiece.

There is horror, and hopefully redemption, of a different kind in Human Rights; winner of the Canadian Screen Award for Best First Feature Film, AVA portrays the coming of age of a Tehran teenager; the UK premiere of LETTER FROM MASANJIA documents the astonishing sequence of events that unfold when an SOS note, smuggled out of a Chinese labour camp, is discovered and goes viral; the choices faced by a 14 year old refugee girl in FORTUNA force the inhabitants of a Swiss Catholic monastery to confront their concept of Christian charity; award winning documentary THE SILENCE OF OTHERS is is a courageous examination of Spain’s ongoing failure to confront the crimes of the Franco dictatorship which was six years in the making; modern day domestic slavery is brought into sharp focus in Bernadett Tuza-Ritter’s powerful A WOMAN CAPTURED.

Now in its seventh year the Camera Catalonia section presents Catalan films which range geographically from the mainland, where Ventura Pons’s new biopic of Salvador Dali MISS DALÍ is set, to the Balearic islands which provide the backdrop for Marc Recha’s latest film THE FREE LIFE. The search to discover and present new talents and narratives brings Elena Martín’s JÚLIA IST to the Festival, a film about student life which will no doubt strike a chord with the city’s student community, while coming-of-age road movie JEAN-FRANÇOIS AND THE MEANING OF LIFE is reminiscent of the cinema of Truffaut and his particular sensitivity towards young people.

The longest running African Film Festival in the United Kingdom returns with a range of films that highlight the extraordinary talents emerging from Africa. Providing a UK audience for African filmmakers and increasing the knowledge and awareness of African and black culture in the country; realism and fantasy walk hand-in-hand in Jenna Cato Bass’ HIGH FANTASY; the lives of a group of girls who are learning to become auto mechanics are the focus of OUAGA GIRLS, which shows bravery through breaking out of traditional stereotypes; in SUPA MODO, Likarion Wainaina’s female lead-characters take us through the anxieties of failing health and the fantasies of possessing superpowers, while the politically charged streets of Nairobi are the setting for RAFIKI, a film receiving such outstanding acclaim that it is only now being allowed to screen in its home country, Kenya, where it had previously been banned for promoting lesbianism.

Microcinema explores artist moving image work and this year presents DEREK JARMAN SUPER 8MM CYCLE a collection of the legendary filmmaker’s films of the 70s which were an essential part of the Glitterati London scene along with Andrew Logan’s Alternative Miss World pageants and Duggie Fields’ glamorous paintings, these will accompany Portuguese filmmaker João Pedro Rodrigues’ THE ORNITHOLOGIST, and a video installation, TWIXT CUP AND LIP by Stephen Sutcliffe which is loosely based on David Storey’s 1970 play The Contractor.

Eye on Films, an organisation dedicated to the promotion and circulation of first and second films by European directors, will showcase the work of Blerta Zeqiri, an award-winning Kosovar director and scriptwriter with THE MARRIAGE; Gjorce Stavreski, a Macedonian filmmaker whose debut feature SECRET INGREDIENT tells the tragi-comic story of a train mechanic who gives his father stolen marijuana to relieve his cancer pain; Gilles Coulier, the director, producer and writer of CARGO, a story about how desperation can bring a family to the edge of destruction and Banu Sıvacı whose directorial debut feature film THE PIGEON was nominated for best feature at this year’s Berlinale.

Supporting local filmmakers and encouraging film culture in Cambridge has always been a big part of Cambridge Film Festival’s mission and this year the Festival presents two programmes with Cambridge Connections.

ERIK & THE IBAN, documents the work of Dr Erik Jensen who in 1959 travelled to Sarawak to live and work with the indigenous Iban Dayaks. 50 years on, he returned to meet some of his old friends and discover how the Iban people have adapted to life in a rapidly changing world. This will show with KINETICS, which is adapted from the critically acclaimed theatre production of the same name.

From an up-and-coming local producer Jona Thompson comes FELINE, the story of David, a somewhat naive young man, who takes a summer job as a groundskeeper on a lavish country estate; FELINE will screen with THE ARCHIVE, directed by Peter Spence who won the Crystal Punt audience award for his short STEEL MAN in 2002.

Bringing emerging talent, established stars and captivating stories together, the very best of short filmmaking is represented in the Festival’s ShortFusion strand. There will be shorts to Animate, Encounter, Entertain, Contemplate and Love in these bite-sized collections of fiction, documentary, and animation.

Featuring performances from Billie Piper, Brett Goldstein and Stephen Graham, and allowing up-and-coming talents to enter the frame, these films exhibit the quality and calibre of short filmmaking today, providing a rare opportunity to enjoy such works on the big screen.

A partnership with the Independent Cinema Office (ICO) will provide an opportunity for filmmakers to network and collaborate with fellow creatives at a writing workshop, open to those who are interested in getting into filmmaking. The writing lab will focus on story and development and will be led by Script Editor Kate Leys with support from Film Hub South East’s BFI NETWORK Talent Executive Tom Wightman. The workshop will be followed by a programme of short films from the BFI Network region that the ICO are currently touring.

Over final weekend of the half term break, 25th - 28th October, the Cambridge Family Film Festival returns with a bumper programme, presented in a friendly environment giving families plenty of opportunities to get involved with the Festival. Presenting a programme of free short films, family-friendly features, and free workshops to entertain children and adults of all ages.Exploring the topics of Space, Sustainability and Family, with Features including; on it’s 10th anniversary WALL-E; Studio Ghibli’s beautiful MY NEIGHBOR TOTORO; from Turkey the heartwarming documentary KEDI, as well as the UK premiere of THE WITCH HUNTERS at The Light cinema, a venue partner which enables a new audience to experience the Festival. In partnership with Cambridge Assessment, the Festival will team up with local organisations to provide activities, workshops and events to excite, educate and amaze. BAFTA Kids will be in attendance to present four episodes of Cartoon Network’s wildly imaginative animated series, SUMMER CAMP ISLAND, as well as show some behind the scenes footage including a Q&A with the British creator Julia Potts. There will even be a chance to win Cartoon Network goodies in a competition hosted by Nigel Clarke, presenter of the Ben 10 Challenge.

Tickets for the 38th Cambridge Film Festival go on sale on the 6th of October, at the same time full details will be available via the Festival’s official website

For further press information please contact:
Tel: 01223 500082
Notes to Editors:

Dropbox link to images

Further details at:

The Cambridge Film Trust is a charity founded to promote film culture in the East of England. Established in 2007, the Trust's main event, the annual Cambridge Film Festival is backed by the BFI’s Film Festival Fund, which awards National Lottery funding to UK film festivals, attracts over 11,000 admissions every year.

Follow Cambridge Film Festival:
Twitter @camfilmfest Facebook /cambridgefilmfestival Instagram @camfilmfest

Cambridge Film Trust, Arts Picturehouse 38-39 St Andrew's Street, Cambridge, Cambridgeshire CB2 3AR, United Kingdom
You may unsubscribe or change your contact details at any time.