image from Diamantino (Portugal)
Cornell Cinema regularly premieres new international films from the film festival circuit that otherwise wouldn’t screen in Ithaca, and this Fall is no exception, with films from Argentina, Bulgaria, Cambodia, Chile, China, Germany, Hungary, Japan, Morocco, North Macedonia, Singapore, Spain, Thailand and Vietnam (with even more showing as part of the Francophone Film Festival!). Some of the films are by established directors like Eric Khoo, Jia Zhangke and Christian Petzold, while others are feature debuts by up-and-coming filmmakers, like Ash Mayfair and Phuttiphong Aroonpheng. Many of the films were selections of some of most prestigious film festivals in the world, and several won awards at those festivals. Honeyland (the only documentary in the series), about ancient beekeeping practices in North Macedonia, was the most awarded film at the 2019 Sundance Film Festival, and Ága, about a couple living in remote Siberia, was selected as the closing night film at the Berlin International Film Festival. The Chilean film Too Late to Die Young, from the producers of Call Me By Your Name, won the Best Director prize at the 2018 Locarno Film Festival. China’s Ash is Purest White and Japan’s Asako I & II were both selections of the 2018 New York Film Festival. But festivals and awards aside, international films offer a unique opportunity for viewers to immerse themselves in the history, traditions, psyches, contemporary concerns and languages of other cultures, revealed in powerful stories, and frequently presented with stunning cinematography. Both The Third Wife and Manta Ray are being presented in conjunction Arnika Fuhrmann’s (Asian Studies) courses Introduction to Southeast Asia and Gender and Sexuality in Southeast Asian Cinema.