Bienvenidos to the 2nd edition of Amsterdam Spanish Film Festival (ASFF). After a successful edition last year, we are very excited to present a new edition with yet another extraordinary line-up of recent Spanish-language films.
This year the festival will feature a selection of films from various genres, demonstrating the compelling variety of Spanish cinema in all its richness. From engaging thrillers to entertaining comedies, from moving dramas and action movies to documentaries and shorts, this selection will demonstrate the dynamism and creativity of Spanish cinema today.
Filmmakers and actors will join us at the festival to present their work and bring some extra background and insight to our screenings. We are very happy to welcome Inma Cuesta and Asier Etxeandia, who will present the opening film: LA NOVIA (The bride), a sizzling adaptation of the play Blood Wedding by Federico García Lorca. Audiences will also have the privilege of sharing questions and answers with directors and cast of LA PUERTA ABIERTA (The open door), preceded by Q&A with director Marina Seresesky and actor Asier Etxeandia. The Festival is also delighted to welcome award-winning filmmaker Julio Medem to this year’s edition, presenting his new film MA MA, starring the sensational Penélope Cruz.
Other names that stand out from our director’s guest list: Dani de la Torre, best new director finalist in the last Goya awards, who will join us to introduce his multi Goya award nomination film EL DESCONOCIDO (Retribution), an excellent thriller proposal which inmerses the spectator (and carries him/her delete this) into a frenetic urban adventure with an underlying social message; and Inés París, director but also writer of the hilarious LA NOCHE QUE MI MADRE MATÓ A MI PADRE (The night my mother killed my father). The actor Fele Martínez ( Tesis ) will join Inés París on the stage.
Similar to our previous edition, there will be a Focus Latino, a showcase dedicated to discovering and celebrating Latin American cinema by introducing an interesting variety of films. We are honoured to premiere PAULINA directed by Santiago Mitre, which won the Critics’ Week Grand Prix at the 2015 Cannes Film Festival. Straight from Berlinale this year we have LAS PLANTAS by Roberto Doveris, winner of the Grand Jury Prize for Best Film and Special Mention by the Young Jury in Berlinale Generation 14+.
Following last´s years connection with music, the extraordinary documentary LA CALLE DE LOS PIANISTAS (Pianist street) will be followed by a piano concert by the protagonist Karin Lechner, currently one of the most talented pianists in the world. As a special treat, LOS 33, a film directed by Mexican Patricia Riggen, will close the Focus Latino section with a touching storyline based on the true experience of a group of miners who became trapped in a Chilean mine. The film, shot amidst impressive landscapes in Colombia and Chile, features some well-known Spanish and International actors, such us Antonio Banderas, Juliette Binoche and Mario Casas.
We are also very proud to include once again in our programme Spanish Cinema Without Fear, a special film section with a variety of some of the most artistic and experimental short films of 2015/16. Spanish works that have the courage to experiment with something beyond and on the periphery of the Spanish cinematographic industry. Some of the filmmakers will join us to talk about their creative work.
Furthermore, in second edition ASFF is happy to introduce a new section, Vermouth Time (La hora del vermut), a chance in our programme to discover and revive an age-old Spanish tradition, which brings together gezelligheid, socialising and tasty food on weekends at noon. An important culinary moment, as far as Spanish socialising around food is concerned.
Vermouth time has been conceived to offer the chance to enjoy Spanish culture using two senses: sight and taste. Firstly, through the screening of two delicious films that combine cinema and food: the fresh comedy FUERA DE CARTA (Chef’s special) and EL SOMNI (The dream), a remarkable documentary which reveals the creative process of over 40 international artists who participated in a dinner put together as an opera in twelve dishes, with gastronomic creations by the Roca brothers. It will then be time for tasting and our audiences will be able to relish in a variety of Spanish tapas.
Yet another new section will be presented this year: Treasures from the past, an unmissable opportunity to re-discover some of the forgotten gems of Spanish cinematography. This section will be opened by the unparalleled EL MUNDO SIGUE (World goes on), considered one of the best films ever made in Spain. Directed and written by Spanish director and actor Fernando Fernán Gomez in 1963, who also stars in the film, it was banned by the dictatorship and only screened clandestinely. As an unearthed treasure, this outstanding production unavoidably breaks the hearts of those who discover it.
And last but not least, we are very excited to rely on a superb Premiere as our closing film of the festival: NOBODY WANTS THE NIGHT, an impressive and perceptive portrait of two women faced with extreme conditions, directed by Isabel Coixet. The film opened the Berlinale last year and participated in the international competition.
This year, we will go a step further with the inclusion of tasty food following screenings: jamón ibérico and other spanish nibbles will accompany Spanish drinks after most of the sessions in order to offer our audiences both added value and unforgettable Spanish culture experience.