The 38th edition of Fajr International Film Festival has revealed the names of movies in its non-competitive section of Festival of Festivals (Cup of Divination).
Films from Russia, Denmark, Japan, France and China are in the screening program of Festival of Festivals. Some of the movies are joint productions.
Japan | 2020 | 153 min
Director: Yujiro Harumoto
Cast: Kumi Takiuchi, Ken Mitsuishi, Masahiro Umeda, Yuumi Kawai, Yohta Kawase, Misa Wada, Mitsuko Oka, Yuya Matsuura, Ryo Ikeda, Tomoki Kimura
Documentary director Yuko is working on a piece about a bullied schoolgirl’s suicide. The girl’s high school denied she was bullied, and fabricated an affair between the student and her teacher. This resulted in a public outcry against not only the school but also the teacher, who took his own life.
A Siege Diary
Russia | 2020 | 118 min
Director: Andrey Zaytsev
Cast: Olga Ozollapinya, Sergey Dreyden, Sergey Dreyden, Andrey Shibarshin
In the winter of 1941, during the siege of Leningrad by the Nazis during World War II, Olga makes a long journey to meet her father in what she thinks is the last encounter.
The Blue Girl
Iran | 2021 | 84 min
Director: Keivan Majidi
Cast: Vorya Majidi, Hima Mohammadi, Mobin Majidi, Jamal Zandi, Hasti Dehgani, Sheena Fatehi
In a remote village between the rocky mountains in kurdiston, everyone is in love with football, but there is no plain field to play the game. The children decide to climb up the mountain in order to find somewhere to play the game.
Iran, Canada | 2020 | 97 min
Director: Kaveh Mazaheri
Cast: Susan Parvar, Mahdokht Molaei, Soroush Saeidi, Mohsen Kiani, Morteza Khanjani
Akram and Azar two sisters lie about the disappearance of their brother by telling everyone he has fled to Germany. As time goes by, however, the “lie” turns into “reality” in Akram’s mind, so that she believes her brother will come back.
Erna at War
Denmark | 2020 | 100 min
Director: Henrik Ruben Genz
Cast: Trine Dyrholm, Ulrich Thomsen, Anders W. Berthelsen, Sylvester Espersen Byder
Denmark, summer of 1918. WW1 rages through Europe. Feldwebel Meyer enrolls Kalle, Erna’s 17-year-old simple-minded son. After failing to convince the commanding officer that Kalle is unfit for war, Erna swaps identities with a deserting soldier in order to follow and protect Kalle. Erna at War is the story of a remarkable woman who won’t let war keep her from protecting what she believes in.
Bulgaria | 2020 | 100 min
Director: Ivaylo Hristov
Cast: Svetlana Yancheva, Michael Fleming, Ivan Savov, Stoyan Bochev, Krassimir Dokov
Svetla is a widow who has recently lost her job as a teacher. The village in which she lives is close to the border of Bulgaria with Turkey and refugees often appear nearby. One day, while hunting in a forest, Svetla comes across a migrant from Africa. This brings about a dramatic turn in her life. She is forced to rebel against the people she has lived with as they urge the black refugee to leave the village immediately.
Hungary | 2020 | 115 min
Director: István Szabó
Cast: Klaus Maria Brandauer, Károly Eperjes, Dorottya Udvaros
A reputable cardiologist is sent unexpectedly into retirement. He feels at a loss without his work. However, when returning to his home village, he learns that the village has been without a doctor for over a year and decides to take on the job of general practitioner. This is the start of his ordeal: he’s confronted with raw reality, which finally brings him to his knees. But music has the last word.
Food for a Funeral
Turkey | 2019 | 98 min
Director: Reis Çelik
Cast: Tarkhan Omarov, Ieddin Aliyev, Zilan Düzdaban
In drought driven North eastern Anatolia of 1960s, a teenage boy desires to become an Ashiq, while trying to achieve the love of his life.
I Never Cry
Poland, Ireland | 2020 | 100 min
Director: Piotr Domalewski
Cast: Zofia Stafiej , Kinga Preis ,Arkadiusz Jakubik ,Dawid Tulej ,Cosmina Stratan ,Nigel O’neil ,Shane Casey ,David Pearse ,Donncha Crowley
Ola (17) must travel to Ireland to bring her father’s body back to Poland after he died working on a construction site. But never mind her dad, Ola wants to know if he saved money for the car he had promised. Dealing with foreign bureaucracy in her own street-smart way, Ola learns that her biggest dream wasn’t a car, but getting to know her dad.
Long Time No See
France| 2019 | 73 min
Director: Pierre Filmon
Cast: Laëtitia Eïdo, Pierre Rochefort, Ronald Guttman, Estéban
Nine years ago, Marion and Grégoire shared a brief love affair. Now, by chance, they meet in a train station, in between two journeys. He is arriving, she is leaving. They have eighty minutes to re-evaluate their lives, and come face to face with their truths, regrets and memories. This is their last chance.
Many Happy Returns
Germany | 2019 | 79 min
Director: Carlos Andrés Morelli
Cast: Mark Waschke, Anna Brüggemann, Kasimir Brause
The story of a married but separated couple, Matthias and Anna. Although the wounds are still open, together they planning the birthday – party of their son Lukas. When, at the end of the party, little guest Julius isn’t picked up by his parents, a rapid chain of events take place.
Mr. Bachmann and His Class
Germany | 2021 | 217 min
Director: Maria Speth
Cast: Dieter Bachmann, Aynur Bal, Önder Cavdar
Where does one feel at home? In Stadtallendorf, a German city with a complex history of both excluding and integrating foreigners, genial teacher Dieter Bachmann offers his pupils the key to at least feeling as if they are at home. these pupils come from twelve different nations. On the brink of retirement, Bachmann is eager to inspire these citizens-in-the-making with a sense of curiosity for a wide range of crafts, subjects, cultures and opinions.
UK, Italy, Romania | 2020 | 96 min
Director: Uberto Pasolini
Cast: James Norton, Daniel Lamont, Eileen O’Higgins
John, a 35-year-old window cleaner, devotes his life to raising his 4-year-old son Michael, as the child’s mother left them immediately after his birth. Their life is a simple one, made up of universal daily rituals, a life of complete dedication and innocent love that reveals the strength of their relationship.
Over the Sea
China | 2019 | 105 min
Director: Aoqian Sun
Cast: Kunjie Yu, Manxuan Li, Xinfu Sun
Eleven-year-old Xiaojie is a troublemaker who loves the sea. He lives with his uncle and his angelic daughter, who run a restaurant together. One day, Xiaojie has to prepare for a presentation on the sea for school. He desperately needs an encyclopedia, but financial difficulties at home prevent his wish from coming true. The situation at home gets worse after his uncle gets hurt in a car accident.
Italy | 2020 | 122 min
Director: Claudio Noce
Cast: Pierfrancesco Favino , Barbara Ronchi ,Mattia Garaci ,Francesco Gheghi
Rome, 1976. Valerio is 10 years old kid with a fervent imagination. His life is turned upside down when he witnesses a terrorist commando attempting his father Alfonso.
Hungary | 2020 | 115 min
Director: Péter Bergendy
Cast: Viktor Klem, Fruzsina Hais, Judit Schell
Countless ghosts have been stuck in our world as a result of the destruction caused by World War I and the Spanish Flu epidemic. Tomás, the wandering post mortem photographer, gets to a haunted village after meeting a ten – year – old orphan girl, Anna, during the freezing winter of 1918. After experiencing the strange, supernatural phenomena, he decides to investigate the intentions of the ghosts. Anna accompanies Tomás’s exploration through all its dangers, while the ghosts rave with fury.
Russia | 2020 | 100 min
Director: Dmitri Rudakov
Cast: Alexander Ryazantsev, Fyodor Lavrov, Pavel Tabakov,AlyonaKonstantinova, Miriam Sekhon,Ivan Krasko
Devoted to the last days of Soviet writer, poet, and Gulag survivor Varlam Shalamov, this film follows the efforts of two of Shalamov’s most devoted admirers to preserve the author’s legacy, remnants of which they seek out in lost manuscripts and audiocassettes, and even in the ageing Shalamov’s own collapsing memory. Having lost his sight and hearing and living in a retirement home, he carried on doing the only thing that mattered to him – writing – until his final breath. This film is a testament to the value of writings that tell the unpalatable truths of the 20th century.
Poland | 2019 | 78 min
Director: Bartosz Kruhlik
Cast: Marek Braun, Marcin Hycnar, Marcin Zarzeczny
Three men, one place and one event that will change the life of each one of them. A universal tale, kept in a realistic style, tells the story of a few hours in the life of a rural community. The film takes a look at the condition of a man in a borderline situation and raises questions about the essence of chance and destiny.
Finland, Latvia | 2020 | 90 min
Director: Dace Puce
Cast: Aigars Vilims, Damirs Onackis, Luize Birkenberga
Markuss must adapt to a new life living with his granny in the countryside. After Emīlija – a neighbor’s daughter – throws some contemptuous remarks about the boy’s father, Markuss decides to teach her a cruel lesson. This has severely negative consequences which resonate throughout the village. Forced to work the boy begins to harbor hatred towards the others in the village.
Iran | 2020 | 102 min
Director: Ahmad Bahrami
Cast: Ali Bagheri, Farrokh Nemati, Mahdieh Nassaj, Touraj Alvand, Majid Farhang, Naser Alaghemandan, Narges Amini, Mohsen Yeganeh
A remote brick manufacture factory produces bricks in an ancient way. Many families with different ethnicities work in the factory and the boss seems to hold the key to solving their problems. Forty-year-old Lotfollah, who has been born on-site, is the factory supervisor and acts as go-between for the workers and the boss.
The 2021 FIFF is scheduled to get underway in the Iranian capital on May 26-June 2. This year’s event is presided over by Iranian film director and screenwriter Mohammad Mehdi Asgarpour. The festival is widely considered one of the most prestigious and influential in Asia, Europe and Greater Middle East.