Thursday 11 January 2024

53rd IFF Rotterdam (25/1/24–4/2/24)

Jonathan Ogilvie’s spirited Head South will open the 53rd International Film Festival Rotterdam (IFFR) on Thursday 25 January, with the festival running until Sunday 4 February. New Zealand filmmaker Ogilvie returns to IFFR with his semi-autobiographical film, a small-town coming-of-age comedy where a private schoolboy becomes desperately enamoured with all things post-punk in 1979 Christchurch. Ogilvie's last film Lone Wolf screened in the festival’s Big Screen Competition in 2021. Vanja Kaludjercic, IFFR Festival Director: "With Head South, Jonathan Ogilvie returns to the festival with an unpredictable coming-of-age story that delights in its shifting tone. Ogilvie is the kind of filmmaker we cherish at IFFR: those for whom the art is, above all, an adventure of discovery".

A star cast voices Ishan Shukla’s dystopian sci-fi animation Schirkoa: In Lies We Trust, which has its world premiere at IFFR 2024 in the Bright Future programme of feature debuts. The paper bag-wearing citizens of the film’s ultra-regulated society attribute their voices to actors including Golshifteh Farahani and Asia Argento, as well as filmmakers Gaspar Noé and Lav Diaz. So Unreal is the latest film from genre-expanding filmmaker Amanda Kramer following a Focus programme at IFFR 2022, and screens in Harbour where it has its European premiere, as does Elegies, the latest by Hong Kong cinema legend Ann Hu. IFFR 2024 also welcomes Egypt’s 2024 Oscars submission Voy! Voy! Voy! by Omar Hilal, screening in the Limelight programme of festival favourites and international award-winners.

In the lead up to the festival, audiences across the Netherlands can get a taste of the programme with the IFFR Preview Tour. More than 35 cinemas have currently committed to hosting a screening of a film from the Limelight programme in the week before the festival, in cities including Arnhem, Groningen, Maastricht and 's-Hertogenbosch. The 41st edition of IFFR’s co-production market CineMart begins on Sunday 28 January, with Spotlight presentations by project teams returning this year on Monday 29 January. On Tuesday 30, the second edition of the Pro Darkroom presents a curated selection of work-in-progress screenings, and is followed by the IFFR Pro Awards in the evening. Talent programmes, including the Rotterdam Lab, also return to the festival.

Source/images: IFFR