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The films in TIFF 2017 competition

     The competition of the 16th Edition of Transilvania International Film Festival (2-11 June), dedicated exclusively to directors at their first or second film, is a true zone of conflict, with challenging situations and courageous approaches.
     “As it was the case every year, I am interested in discovering those singular brave voices who do not play safely and prefer to put everything on one card. In this year's selection, the shock comes from where it is least expected, the emotion is simmering, but its effects are devastating, the moral dilemmas and the formal bets are taking you out of your comfort zone, and family relations are put to hard trials before the situation is stabilised. The truths of live and the challenges of fiction – this is the adventure of the TIFF 2017 competition,” Mihai Chirilov, artistic director of the festival, concluded.
     Even if Romania is not present this year in the competition, there are two local presences in the selection. Actor Alec Secăreanu is playing the leading role in Tărâmul binecuvântat / God’s Own Country, described by critics as the British counterpart of Brokeback Mountain. Recently awarded at Sundance and Berlin, the debut by director Francis Lee follows the touching, but unsentimental, love story between a young British farmer and a Romanian worker. Tudor Panduru is the director of photography of the bitter-sweet comedy Familia mea fericită / My Happy Familly (directed by Nana Ekvtimishvili, Simon Gross), the story of a Georgian woman who, in the evening of her 52nd anniversary, decides to leave her husband and her home, putting the family through a small earthquake.
     A provocative debut is the one by Polish director Bartosz M. Kowalski, with Teren de joacă / Playground, a shocking study of infantile violence, inspired by the murder committed by two British teenagers. Another troubling approach on violence is made by Tărâmul celor mici / Land of the Little People (directed by Yaniv Berman), that captures the territorial fight between two runaways and a group of children for whom the war stops being a play. Gloria / Glory (directed by Kristina Grozeva and Petar Valchanov) is a social fable on justice and manipulation, whose protagonist is a benevolent worker who ends up as a victim of the system. In Hounds of Love, the terrifying debut by Australian Ben Young, a teenager girls is abducted and sequestered by a dysfunctional couple.
     Other films of TIFF 2017 official competition are: Zeus (directed by Miguel Calderón), Piatră pe inimă / Heartstone (directed by Gudmundur Arnar Gudmundsson), Dolphins Swim Eastward / Las Toninas Van Al Este (directed by Gonzalo Delgado, Verónica Perrota), Vremea crizantemelor / Chrysantemums Time (directed by Dmytro Moiseiev), Simularea / Simulation (directed by Abed Abest) and The One-Eyed King / El Rey Borni (directed by Marc Crehuet).
     The jury of the competition will be made up, among others, by actress Clotilde Courau, Princess of Venice and Piedmont, film critic Geoff Andrew (Sight & Sound), selector for BFI Southbank and consultant for London Film Festival, and director Marian Crișan.
     Details at: TIFF
(Translated by Stela Moise)

Tags: alec secareanu, competitia tiff 2017, mihai chirilov, tiff 2017, tudor panduru