Spanish cinema in the spotlight

Jaulas (2018). Photo: Alex Fidalgo

The best of contemporary Spanish cinema will be featured during the 19th edition of "Pelicula -- Spanish Film Festival" which will take place virtually from Saturday until Oct 11.

From an annual attraction in Philippine cinemas presented by Instituto Cervantes since 2002, the film festival goes online this year due to the Covid-19 situation and expands to cover Thailand and Australia, offering both online screenings and webinars.

The festival will open with La Filla D'algú (2019), a film directed by 11 students from the Escuela Superior de Cine y Audiovisuales de Cataluña, on Oct 3.

Other movies are El Increíble Finde Menguante (2019), a drama directed by Jon Mikel Caballero on Oct 4; dramas like Jaulas (2018) by Nicolás Pacheco on Oct 5 and Arima (2019) by Jaione Camborda on Oct 10; and the comedy Asamblea (2019) by Alex Montoya on Oct 9.

Likewise, there will be two documentaries -- El Cuadro (2019) by Andrés Sanz on Oct 7 and Mudar La Piel (2018) by Ana Schulz and Cristóbal Fernández on Oct 8. Also featured will be a drama from Costa Rica, El Despertar De Las Hormigas (2019) by Antonella Sudassasi on Oct 6.

Each movie will be available for free viewing at for 24 hours, starting at 6pm (in the Philippines and Thailand) and 8pm (in Australia) on the programmed screening date.

The audiences are also invited to vote for the "Audience Choice Award". They will be given stubs where they can rate the movie they have seen online. The winning movie will be screened once again on Oct 11 at 6pm.

Directors of the participating films will also conduct webinars and online discussions. "Marketing Asian Cinema In Europe And Spanish Cinema In Asia" is the topic for Oct 5; and the directors of Spanish, Thai and Filipino major film festivals will discuss and answer the question "Any Future For Film Festivals?" on Oct 9. Both will start at 4pm (Bangkok time).

Set for Oct 10 also at 4pm will be "En Corto: Short Films From The Philippines, Thailand, Australia And Spain", a round-table discussion with four filmmakers, one from each country. They will present their short films and answer questions from the audience.