Tuesday, August 05, 2008

Montreal World Film Festival 2008

Today, in a press conference, the Montreal World Film Festival has announced the program for its 32nd edition. The festival will be held from August 21 to September 1st in four locations (at the Imperial Theatre, Maisonneuve Theatre, Quartier Latin Cinema and Cinema ONF). Tickets are sold for $10, but are available in 10-coupon ($60) or 30-coupon booklets ($150). A Cinephile Pass is also available for $300.

This year the festival will offer 234 feature films (105 of which are world or international premieres), 13 medium-length films and 208 shorts. That includes 32 films in World Competition (20 features, 12 shorts), 17 in the First Films World Competition, 30 Hors-Concours, 192 in the Focus on World Cinema (84 features and 108 shorts), 63 documentaries, 15 tributes movies, 18 in the Cinema Under the Stars, 15 in Our Cinema at Radio-Canada and 73 in the Student Film Festival!

The Festival will offer a posthumous tribute to Mrs Kashiko Kawakita, founder of the Kawakita Memorial Film Institute, for her work promoting Japanese Cinema abroad. To commemorate her 100th anniversary, the festival will be presenting a sampling of significant works by prominent postwar Japanese directors, each a winner of the Kawakita Award:
There will be ten Japanese films shown at the festival. Two are in Official Competition:
  • Okuribito, directed by Yojiro Takita (Onmyoji, Mibu Gishi Den, Ashura). A young cellist who suddenly finds himself out of work when his orchestra disbands, moves back to his hometown and takes a job as an undertaker. It's not a job his wife appreciates, but his daily encounters with death teach him about life. ( IMDb / Official web page )
  • Dare mo Mamotte Kurenai (Nobody To Watch Over Me), directed by Ryoichi Kimizuka (writer for Parasyte Eve and the Odoru Daisosasen TV series & movies). The Funamaras seem a typical suburban family until the police knock on the door one day and arrest their 18-year-old boy for murder. His teenage sister and the cop assign to protect her must hide out from a relentless public braying for blood. ( IMDb / Eiga Wiki / Official web page )

Three in the First Film World Competition:
  • Der Rote Punkt (The Red Spot), directed by Marie Miyayama, is a Germany/Japan co-production. ( IMDb )

One in the Hors-Concours / World Greats category:
  • The Magic Hour, by Koki Mitani (Uchoten Hotel). A gangster having an affair with the wife of his boss is found out, but promises to save face by recruiting a famous hitman. Instead, when he can't find the real thing, he hires an actor to fill the role until he can find a suitable replacement. ( IMDb / Wikipedia / Official web page )

And four in Focus on World Cinema:
  • Yashi (Tears) by Sano Shinju (a Kazakhstan/Japan/Russia co-production).

More details will be added as soon as they are available.

Here's the highlights of the press conference (10 min. out of the 60 min. conference -- in French, sorry):

And a picture of Serge Losique (Festival's president) and Danièle Cauchard (Directeur Général) with this year's poster:

[Updated 2008/08/15]

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