Films in competition and guests at Titanic FilmFestival

Between 6th-13th April in Budapest the 24th Titanic International Film Festival will be held at three venues. This year there will be 7 films – a Filipino–Qatari and an American mystery thriller, an English–Hungarian–French mystery drama, a Swedish–Norwegian–Danish and a Spanish piece, a Luxembourg–Belgian–French and a Danish–Icelandic drama – in competition for the Breaking Waves Award.

Members of the jury will be Frédéric Strauss French critic and György Dragomán writer, the head of it will be Golden Bear-winner director Ildikó Enyedi.

The audience can meet the director of the competition film The Shepherd, Jonathan Cenzual Burley. Also the filmmmaker of Bird on a Wire about Leonard Cohen, Tony Palmer, and the two producers of RUMBLE: The Indians Who Rocked the World, Christina Fon and Stevie Salas accompany their films to Budapest. Presale tickets are already available!

This year’s competition is mostly characterized by mystery and drama. Birdshot is a Filipino-Qatari mystery thriller that tells a story of a young Filipina farm girl who wanders off into the boundaries of a Philippine reservation forest. Deep within the reservation she mistakenly shoots and kills a critically endangered and protected Philippine Eagle. As the local authorities begin a manhunt to track down the poacher of a national bird, their investigation leads them to an even more horrific discovery. Filmmaker Mikhail Red won the Best New Director at Vancouver International Film Festival for his previous work. Jonah is also a troubled man on the run from the authorities in Sarah Adina Smith’s Buster's Mal Heart which is a bold American mystery thriller spiked with dark humour. He survives the winter by breaking into people’s empty vacation homes. He has reoccurring dreams of being lost at sea only to find that he is the man lost at sea.

The English-Hungarian- French mystery drama titled The Childhood of a Leader is a chilling fable about the rise of authoritarianism in the 20th Century. The film, starring Robert Pattinson and partly being shot in Hungary, tells the story of a young boy living in France in 1918 whose father is working for Woodrow Wilson's US government on the creation of the Treaty of Versailles. What he witnesses helps to mold his beliefs – and we witness the birth of a terrifying ego. The American director Brady Corbet works originally as an actor but with this he won the Luigi De Laurentiis Award for the best first film at Venice Film Festival in 2015.

Swedish–Norwegian–Danish Sami Blood is a disturbing coming-of- age story about the fourteen-year- old Elle Marja who is a reindeer-breeding Sámi girl. Exposed to the racism of the 1930-39;s and race biology examinations at her boarding school, she starts dreaming of another life. To achieve this other life she has to become someone else and break all ties with her family and culture. The Swedish director Amanda Kernell’s fascinating debut gained much attention at Venice and Thessaloniki Film Festival.

Jonathan Cenzual Burley, who was born in Spain and is living in the UK, directed the Spanish feature The Shepherd whose protagonist is Anselmo, a middle-aged shepherd. He lives a poor but happy life in a small, run down house in the middle of the Spanish plains, near a small, but growing village. His dog Pillo and his sheep are his only company. A life bucolic enough for him to ignore the offers he receives from a construction company who wants to buy his house and land to build a new residential complex. Conflicting against Anselmo’s unwillingness to sell is Julian and Paco’s greed, the owners of the neighboring lands, who only answer to their own interests.

Danish-Icelandic drama Heartstone takes place in a remote fishing village in Iceland where teenage boys Thor and Christian are cup and can. They experience a turbulent summer as one tries to win the heart of a girl while the other discovers new feelings toward his best friend. When summer ends and the harsh nature of Iceland takes back its rights, it's time to leave the playground and face adulthood. This film directed by the Icelandic Guðmundur Arnar Guðmundsson in addition to several other prizes won the Queer Lion at Venice Film Festival for the best LMBT-film.

Laura Schroeder’s Luxembourg–Belgian–French drama Barrage dubbed with melancholic indie pop is about Catherine played by Isabelle Huppert who after ten years abroad returns to Luxembourg to catch up with her daughter Alba, brought up by Catherine’s mother Elisabeth. Alba is cold and distant with this stranger showing up unexpectedly in her life, so is Elisabeth, keen to keep her protégée to herself. One day, Catherine cannot take it anymore. She kidnaps Alba and takes her on a trip to a lake up North. An unsettling journey begins into the puzzling world of motherly love.

To this year’s festival four filmmakers accompany their films. The director of The Shepherd, Jonathan Cenzual Burley, the filmmmaker of Bird on a Wire about Leonard Cohen, Tony Palmer, and the two producers of RUMBLE: The Indians Who Rocked the World, Christina Fon and Stevie Salasis.

Presale tickets are now available at 1.400 HUF price (for students 1.100 HUF). Discounted ticket price for those who personally buy tickets on the same venue to 5 different screenings: 1000 HUF.

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