The East End Film Festival is now in its 17th Year – yes 17th and hasn’t it come a long way. The festival director is once again Alison Poltock and she is now joined by a new programming team that includes writer and film producer Kaleem Aftab, broadcast journalist Jonathan Ali and BBC Films development exec Rowan Woods. It’s also got a new home, a 365 day home set within the Knowledge Dock of UEL’s Dockland’s Campus.
The East End Film Festival is as innovative and inclusive as ever, the Gala Opening Film is right on point: BOOM FOR REAL The Late Teenage Years of Jean-Michel Basquait. It is directed by a woman, Sara Driver and if you are lucky enough to attend the opening gala you can hear from the woman herself in a special Q&A.
The closing events are really special this year, including a screening of the Oscar nominated film Call Me By Your Name plus a FREE programme of NEW QUEER VISIONS SHORTS. Exercising its social responsibility underpins all that EEFF does. This year, donations of non-perishable food for Films For Food can be made throughout the festival – because EEFF intends to smash last year’s record.
As ever there are lots of interesting, diverse narrative driven films in competition including; TIMESHARE (dir: Sebastian Hofmann about two men attempting to rescue their families from a sinister American timeshare. Also, the London Premiere of DAHA (dir: Onur Saylak, Turkey) is the story of a boy who works with his domineering father to smuggle refugees to Europe.
There are a number of premieres of new independent films with a strong emphasis on female directors and featuring strong female performances: IN THE FADE directed by Faith Akin, NEVER STEAD, NEVER STILL (dir: Kathleen Hepburn), REVENGE (dir Coralie Fargeat).
The East End Film Festival also has a strong history of picking great documentary films. Out of the selection, my current favourites are Another News Story and Brasilia:
- Another News Story has its London Premiere at the East end film festival and special previews at Bertha Dochouse and the Frontline club, see www.anothernewsstory.com
- Brasilia: Life After Design has its London premiere at the East end film festival 26 April and is in select cinemas and on VOD end May: www.brasilialifeafterdesign.com. We’ll be posting reviews shortly and you should definitely try and get tickets to see these.
The 17th East End Film Festival runs 11- 29 April 2018 at venues across London’s East End including Castle Cinema, Curzon Aldgate, Genesis Cinema, Rich Mix, Rio Cinema, Stratford East Picturehouse, Andaz Liverpool Street, Old Spitalfields Market, The Old Church Stoke Newington.
To buy tickets and find out more about The East End Film Festival, click here.
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