Just Be

The annual Be Film Festival is taking place next week in Brussels, showcasing some of the best Belgian cinema from the past year. Running since 2005, the festival features both Flemish and French language films, including many which have won acclaim at other international film festivals. Several of the films will be shown in the presence of the director and cast members, and some for the first time to the public.

You can buy a pass for all five days (18 films) for €17 online via Fnac or tickets for individual showings at the two festival venues BOZAR (€6 per film) and CINEMATEK (€3 per film).

I took a look at the schedule and here are some of the more interesting films showing during the festival (at least to me :)). The full list of films is here. I’ll need to practice my French this weekend so I can keep up!

Viva Riva!, which won the MTV 2011 Best African Film Award, is about a small time hustler returning to his home town of Kinshasa, Congo, and finds himself entangled with a gang boss and his girlfriend. It looks pretty violent but according to Roger Ebert it’s “a slick, exciting, well-made crime thriller, dripping with atmosphere.”

Les Géants (The Giants) is a Belgian take on the classic coming of age story. Two young brothers are abandoned by their mother during their summer holiday and embark on an adventure with a local teenager. The beautiful setting looks like one of the best parts of the movie. It received a pretty good review during Cannes earlier this year.

Rundskop (Bullhead) is a dark crime drama about the meat business and murder in the town of Limburg, and is the first feature film from Belgian director Michael Roskam. Not exactly an upbeat tale but perhaps an interesting one about a farmer’s sorted dealings in the north. It also got good reviews at the Berlin Film Festival.

Quartier Lointain (Distant Neighborhood) transports a fifty-year-old man back to his childhood where he relives some awkward adolescent moments and tries to find out the real reason for his father’s departure. Looks like a touching story, with some good 1960s set design and costumes.

23 Rue Ravenstein, 1000 Brussels
Tel: +32 2 507 82 00

3 Rue Baron Horta, 1000 Brussels
Tel: +32 02 551 19 19

Image via Be Film Festival.

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