‘Guillermo Del Toro’s Pinocchio’ at the opening of the Marrakech Festival

From November 11 to 19, 2022, the Marrakech International Film Festival will present a wide selection of world cinema. Seventy-six films from 33 countries are presented in several sections: the Official Competition, the Gala Screenings, the Special Screenings, the 11th Continent, a Moroccan Panorama, the Young Audience Cinema, outdoor screenings on Jemaa El Fna Square (including the Indian nuggets of Anurag Kashyap, who brings his latest work for Morocco, and Zoya Akhtar) and films screened as Tributes to personalities from Moroccan and world cinema.

True to the positioning of the Festival, as the Cannes of the MENA Region, the Competition presents films by directors directing their first or second feature in order to discover and promote new talents in world cinema. Among the 14 films selected, 10 are first feature films and 6 are directors.

It is a wide selection of 14 countries, including two from Latin America (Brazil and Mexico), three from Europe (France, Portugal and Switzerland), four from the MEA region and its diaspora (Morocco, Sweden/Somalia, Syria, Tunisia), as well as films from Australia, Canada, Indonesia, Iran and Turkey.

Among them, Ashkal by Youssef Chebbi from Tunisia, Savage (Amina) by Ahmed Abdullahi from Sweden, The snow and the bear by Selcen Ergun, the Turkish film just released from its victory in Antalya, and The taste of apples is red (Ta’am al-tufah, ahmar) by Druze filmmaker Ehab Tarabieh, a Syrian-Israeli co-production.

Exploring cinematic genres, from fantasy to film noir, including period films, social dramas, thrillers and melodramas, the films in the running for the Golden Star tackle subjects that reflect the concerns of young people. generations around the world: the construction of identity, the need for models, the place of women in contemporary society, but also questions of transmission of knowledge, whether of tradition, political heritage or simply love.

The opening of the festival will be Pinocchio by Guillermo Del Toroco-directed with Mark Gustafson, the latest work from the Oscar-winning filmmaker of The Shape of Water and Pan’s Labyrinth. This stop-motion musical animated film reimagines the adventures of the beloved wooden puppet who dreams of becoming a real boy.

This year’s gala screenings feature international premieres from respected filmmakers, such as James Gray’s armageddon timeNeil Jordan’s MarloweTarik Saleh sky boy and Paul Schrader master gardeneras well as internationally acclaimed films such as the Palestinian comedy-drama Mediterranean fever by Maha Haj; The sitting duck, a captivating French thriller starring Isabelle Huppert; and swimmersan Anglo-Egyptian selection that tells the true story of two sisters who fled Syria to compete in the 2016 Olympics.

Special screenings include 15 contemporary films from around the world – from Iceland to India to South Korea – directed by critically acclaimed filmmakers and from presentations at the most prestigious international film festivals. Among the directors present will be the French Alice Diop, the British Joanna Hogg, the Austrian Marie Kreutzer and the Iranian Jafar Panahi, as well as the German-Turkish filmmaker Fatih Akin and the French Philippe Faucon, who both shot their films at the Morocco.

The 11th Continent section presents bold and innovative films that challenge cinematic representations. The program of 12 fiction, documentary and archival films opens a cinematic dialogue between contemporary cinema from countries such as Brazil, Lebanon, Paraguay, Rwanda and Spain, and two recently restored cinema classics that were in their time at the forefront of Arab and African cinema. . Among the works presented are those of the Brazilian/Algerian filmmaker Karim Aïnouz mountain sailor (Marinheiro das Montanhas) and Polaris by Ainara Vera.

The Moroccan Panorama presents five recent fiction and documentary films from Morocco. The opening of the selection is the world premiere of summer days, the latest film by Faouzi Bensaïdi. Moroccan cinema has a strong presence this year, with a total of 15 films appearing in the different sections of the festival.

Anxious to raise awareness among tomorrow’s audiences, the Young Audience Cinema section offers schoolchildren the opportunity to discover cinema through nine dedicated screenings.

The festival comes to life in the mythical Jemaa El Fna square, which has been the subject of films of all ages and filmmakers (remember the pivotal scene in Alfred Hitchcock’s film The man who knew too much) in the heart of the city of Marrakech, with a program of popular films presented by international celebrities, including Anurag Kashyap, who will present his latest film as a world premiere, almost love.

This year’s rich selection of 76 films is complemented by the festival’s Tributes programme, a presentation of films made by or interpreted by international and Moroccan personalities, screened at the Palais des Congrès, the Cinéma du Colisée and in Jemaa El Fna square. .

For more information, see the festival page website.

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