Added On: Friday, December 09, 2005


The 7th Jakarta International Film Festival started yesterday. Yes there have been 6 previous festivals before this, where have you been? This year's event seems a lot more organized. I'm not sure if this is because of Orlow Seunke, Jiffest's director or the fact that they have a butt-load* of sponsors. Maybe its me, maybe its always been this way and my ignorant arse has just been too busy to notice - I for one highly doubt that *chuckle.* No matter the reason, I'm thrilled to see the International Film Festival make its way through our city. This time around the marketing has been tremendous, they even have a website with all the scheduled viewings and have posted up standing banners at most hotels, starbucks and hangout locations in town. Ah what more could a foreign film junkie ask for. The Press Release is as follows:

In its 7th year, JiFFest will feature approximately 201 films (including shorts) from 35 countries. The films were released between the years 2003 and 2005, and most have won awards at prestigious festivals like Cannes, Venice, Sundance, IDFA and the Academy Awards (Oscars). The opening film will be “Le Grand Voyage” by Ismael Ferroukhi (Marocco-France), while “Der Untergang” (The Downfall) by Oliver Hirschbiegel will close the festival. JiFFest will take place at Djakarta Theater, Graha Bhakti Budaya (GBB), TIM 21, Galeri Cipta 3, Teater Kecil, Istituto Italiano di Cultura, GoetheHaus, Erasmus Huis, and Hotel Nikko.

Documentaries will also be screened this year, free of charge. Some titles not to be missed are “Five Obstructions” (by Lars Von Trier), “Metallica” (by Joe Berlinger and Bruce Sinofsky), “Comandante” (Oliver Stone), and “Shape of the Moon” (Leonard Retel Helmrich), among others.

Some highly-recommended titles in the European Union category are “The Constant Gardener” (Fernando Meirelles) and “Etre et Avoir” (Nicholas Philibert). The line-up in the EU Film Festival includes feature and documentary films, which will be screened at Istituto Italiano di Cultura, Erasmus Huis and GoetheHaus.

In All About Indonesia, JiFFest features a number of Indonesia-themed films, including “Lukas’ Moment” by young director Aryo Danusiri and a compilation of short films entitled “From The Cabinet of Des Alwi”.

There will also be workshops, for professionals to enhance their skills. Four workshops will address screenwriting and will be led by international tutors like screenwriter David Howard, producers Curtis Levy and Graeme Isaac, and as documentarian Leonard Retel Helmrich. Meanwhile, the six Master Class sessions will be led by Aline Bonetto, production designer for “Amélie”; Robby Müller (cinematographer); Tony Rayns (film critics); Wouter Barendrecht (Fortissimo Sales); Chris Masters (Senior reporter for ABC TV- Australia) and Donna Smith (former Senior Vice President, Universal Pictures).

Other Special Events:
Film Music in Concert (December 2-4, Atrium Plaza Senayan, free of charge)
Screening of silent films accompanied by music from renowned composers Dwiki Dharmawan, Jaya Suprana and Thoersi Argeswara. The featured films are cinematic classics starring the legendary Buster Keaton.

Behind the Scenes Photo Exhibition (November 24 – December 18, Hotel Nikko, Jl. M.H. Thamrin, December 9-18, JiFFest Café, GBB, TIM Complex, free of charge)
Featuring photographic images from behind the scenes on the production sets of Indonesia’s latest films, released between November 2004 and October 2005. Curator: Erik Prasetya.

JiFFest 2005 Celebrity Guests - Archie Panjabi (actress, “Yasmin” and “Bend It Like Beckham”), Shinya Tsukamoto (director of “Vital”), Peter Friedman, Geoffrey Gilmore (director, Sundance Film Festival) and Michael Glawogger will be guests at this year’s JiFFest. They will be appear in daily talk shows (free of charge) each evening at 5:45 pm at JiFFest Café, Graha Bhakti Budaya (TIM).

So its friday, drop by the local aksara store and register your gal and you as a member, its time for an international movie marathon.



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