Another good year! Special thanks to the Leeds International Film Festival 2021 team for screening an impressive selection of films despite Covid and the non availability of the Hyde Park Picture House and Leeds Town Hall this year.
I watched a total of 8 films
Dear Future Children (2021). Very powerful interviews with young women activists facing huge personal risks in Hong Kong, Santiago and an Ugandan village, plus Q&A with the director.
The Ants and the Grasshopper (2021) following two Malawian women who share experiences of climate change with people from a wide variety of backgrounds in the USA. Great to have this screened while the COP26 Climate Conference was being held in Glasgow. (Available on LeedsFilmPlayer until Thursday)
No Straight Lines: The Rise of Queer Comics (2021), with interviews with some key American women and men artists. The documentary shows how they adapted from underground comics in the late 60s, to supporting people through the AIDS epidemic, leading on to graphic novels and a Broadway show. (Available on LeedsFilmPlayer until Thursday)
Seven Samurai (1954). Great to see on the big screen. Actors were really tough in those days!
Paris, 13th District (2021). Some interesting insights into life in the eight tower blocks of Les Olympiades.
Medusa (2021). A Brazilian feminist horror film. Despite an interesting soundtrack and colour design I struggled to follow the plot in this one.
Compartment No. 6 (2021). A great film showing the common humanity shared between a female Finnish archaeology student and a male Russian mineworker on a long train journey to Murmansk.
The Hand of God (2021). The first half is the hugely entertaining story of a gathering of an extended Italian family, followed by the story of how this and other life experiences have influenced the director’s (Paolo Sorrentino’s) work.
This is but a small taste of the huge range of films on offer. Once again it shows the importance of International Film Festivals in building the global understanding that we so urgently need.