Edinburgh International Film Festival 2013

Horror fans are about to lose their collective heads when they hear about our line-up of films dedicated to everything that splats, splices and slices. That¹s right, this year Edinburgh International Film Festival brings back the ever-popular Night Moves programme strand which will feature all the films that are only suitable for screening after dark…..

What is more terrifying than Frankenstein’s monster? Why Frankenstein’s army of course which is exactly what you¹ll be getting with the aptly named found footage¹ frightener, Frankenstein¹s Army. Set in Eastern Germany during World War Two, a ragged unit of Russian soldiers discover a secret Nazi laboratory where a deranged scientist is using Dr. Frankenstein’s work as a blueprint for creating a monstrous army for the Fuhrer¹s final assault. If the plot alone doesn¹t sway you, this horror extravaganza has all the makings of a cult classic and is worth a watch for the gloriously gory set pieces alone.

Now I don¹t have to tell you that the only thing capable of topping a film about Nazi zombies is TWO films featuring Nazi zombies? Yep, this year EIFF has gotten its hands (severed or otherwise) on the third instalment of the popular UK Outpost series, Outpost 3: Rise of the Spetnaz. If you haven¹t already guessed from the title, the film is set in WW2 and follows a member of Russia¹s elite special forces, Dolokhov as he is captured by the Germans and taken to an underground bunker where horrific experiments are under way.

So grab a copy of our 2013 brochure or visit edfilmfest.org.uk and sit back and relax with a nice glass of Chianti (liver perhaps?) and start planning your time at this year¹s Festival. And don¹t fret, if you happen to faint during all the excessive gore, we know a great doctor.


1. First Cousin Once Removed

Directors’ Showcase / UK premiere

  • Alan Berliner / USA / 2012 / 78 mins/ Starring Edwin Honig

A vivid and intimate portait of a poet whose memory and language are being eroded by dementia.

Director Alan Berliner documents five years worth of visits with his cousin and mentor, poet and translator Edwin Honig, as he gradually succumbs to the effects of Alzheimer’s disease. Berliner illustrates the fragility of memory and self in an unsentimental yet wholly respectful and loving way, employing archive materials and family members to show us, and sometimes Honig himself, who this lost man used to be.


2. I Catch a Terrible Cat

World Perspectives / UK premiere

  • Rikiya Imaizumi /Japan / 2012 / 130 mins/ Starring Moto Fuyuki, Kazuha Komiya

A web of love affairs, a comedy of errors.

Takada, a successful novelist who’s about to turn 60, has struggled with writer’s block since the death of his wife. When the beautiful new waitress at his favourite bar shows unusual interest in him, Takada starts to believe he might be able to conquer his loneliness. Meanwhile, he becomes involved against his will in the romantic entanglements of his daughter, his son, and a young male admirer. An intricate, absorbing and ingenious romantic comedy.


3. Not Another Happy Ending (Closing Night Gala)

Closing Night Gala / World premiere

  • John McKay / UK / 2013 / 98 mins /Karen Gillan, Stanley Weber, Amy Manson, Iain de Caestecker, Kate Dickie, Freya Mavor, Gary Lewis, Henry Ian Cusick

Quintessential romantic comedy with a sexy and skilful cast.

Karen Gillan stars as Jane, a young Glasgow writer whose first novel is a success, thanks in part to the editing of her sympathetic but businessminded publisher, Tom (Stanley Weber). Reconciled with her estranged father (Gary Lewis) and embarked on a new relationship with a handsome and self-absorbed writer (Henry Ian Cusick), Jane comes down with a severe case of writer’s block while struggling with her second novel. Tom believes that this is because she is too happy, so he resorts to drastic measures to get her unblocked. In scenes that are among the wittiest and most engaging of the film, Jane carries on a conversation with an alter ego, the heroine of her workin- progress (Amy Manson), who appears at her side to provide criticism and advice. Of course, these conversations appear one-sided to any bewildered people who happen to be nearby. Gillan’s performance carries this bright and smoothly-done romantic comedy. Her mobile features indicate her vulnerability and her susceptibility to the people around her. At the same time, she conveys a winning optimism that becomes the keynote of the character. The film benefits from a lively portrait of Glasgow, which is presented as the bustling, idyllic centre of various kinds of activity — professional, creative, relaxing and romantic — and the perfect place, in fact, for yet another happy ending.


4. Reaching For The Moon

Directors’ Showcase / UK premiere

  • Bruno Barreto / Brazil / 2012 / 118 mins/ Miranda Otto, Gloria Pires, Tracy Middendorf, Marcello Airoldi, Treat Williams

The bigger-than-life romance between two gifted and unconventional women.

In 1951, poet Elizabeth Bishop travels from her native New York to Rio de Janeiro to visit a college friend, Mary. The shy but poised Bishop both antagonises and attracts Mary’s flamboyant partner, architect Lota de Macedo Soares, and the two become lovers. Spanning two decades, their volatile relationship unfolds against the physical and political transformation of Brazil. A winning and visually lush film, with incandescent performances from the two stars.


5. The Sea

Michael Powell Award Competition / World premiere

  • Stephen Brown / Ireland, UK / 2013 / 87 mins/ Ciarán Hinds, Charlotte Rampling, Natascha McElhone, Rufus Sewell, Bonnie Wright, Sinéad Cusack

A journey back in time to a summer of turbulent emotions.

A middle-aged art historian returns to the Irish seaside village where, as a boy, he and his family spent their holidays. His visit triggers a series of memories, some romantic, some disturbing, of a summer that saw the awakening of sexuality and an unexpected tragedy. John Banville adapted his Man Booker Prize-winning novel to provide the script for this haunting and superlatively acted film.


6. Viola

Directors’ Showcase / UK premiere

  • Matías Piñeiro / Argentina / 2012 / 65 mins/ Agustina Muñoz, María Villar, Elisa Carricajo, Romina Paula, Laura Paredes, Gabi Saidón, Esteban Bigliardi, Alberto Ajaka, Pablo Sigal, Julián Tello, Alessio Rigo Di Righi, Julia Martinez Rubio, Alejo Moguillansky

The pleasures of Shakespeare’s poetry mix with those of modern romance.

In Buenos Aires, a young woman who works as a bicycle courier for a DVD delivery rental service becomes involved with a group of actors who are rehearsing an experimental production of Twelfth Night. The characters’ roles shift magically, and the lines between performer and spectator, between actor and character, become hard to trace. A marvellous exploration of love, life and theatre.


7. What Maisie Knew

American Dreams / European premiere

  • Scott McGehee, David Siegel / USA / 2012 / 93 mins/ Julianne Moore, Steve Coogan, Onata Aprile, Alexander Skarsgård, Joanna Vanderham

In a dance of changing partners, a little girl gets left out.

Little Maisie (Onata Aprile) is the casualty of the acrimonious divorce of two rich Manhattanites: rock star Julianne Moore and art dealer Steve Coogan. Abandoned by her self-absorbed parents, Maisie is left to the informal custody of their new partners, waiter Alexander Skarsgård and nanny Joanna Vanderham. Brilliant performances and inspired direction make this updating of Henry James’s novel an outstanding comedy-drama of contemporary adult relationships, as seen from the point of view of an innocent child.


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