Maven's Nest

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Traveling from international film festivals to New York City in May 2016

By Nora Lee Mandel

The 8th Annual Panorama Europe is coming to my New York City home borough of Queens, at the Museum of the Moving Image, in Astoria, with additional screenings on the Upper East Side of Manhattan at the Bohemian National Hall. From May 6 through May 22, the slate is an impressive nineteen feature films, fiction and documentaries, including nine New York premieres and many filmmakers attending the screenings.

That’s 19 of the 28 member states of the European Union: Austria, Belgium, Croatia, Czech Republic, Estonia, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Italy, Kosovo, Lithuania, Malta (its first film in international distribution!), The Netherlands, Poland, Portugal, Slovakia, Slovenia, and Spain. While there are people in Queens who speak the native languages of each of these countries (and I was thrilled that the EU Deputy U.S. Delegate to the United Nations, noted that in his opening night remarks), films are shown with English subtitles.

Reflecting a broad range of European concerns past and present: there’s historical epics, even in animation, to the plight of Romani (gypsy) children, the current crisis of refugees and migrants, and several focusing on women under extreme personal stress, caught in many different kinds of love from mothers to obsession to lesbian discovery, to hip hop. Comedy, mystery, drama – and there’s even a couple of horror flicks.

Panorama Europe 2016 Program:
New York Premieres
Opening Night - Anna (Per amor vostro), from Italy (directed by Giuseppe M. Gaudino) with actress Valeria Golino in person
Babai from Kosovo (directed by Visar Morina)
The Beat of Love (Utrip Ljubezni) from Slovenia (directed by Boris Petkovic)
Cafard from Belgium (animation directed by Jan Bultheel)
The Cleaner (Cistic) from Slovakia (directed by Peter Bebjak)
Marshland (La isla mínima) from Spain (directed by Alberto Rodríguez)
Home Care (Domácí péce), from Czech Republic, with director Slávek Horák in person
The Maias: Scenes from Romantic Life (Os Maias - Cenas da Vida Romântica) from Portugal, with director João Botelho in person (in Manhattan)
The People vs. Fritz Bauer (Der Staat gegen Fritz Bauer) from Germany (directed Lars Kraume) – a preview before its theatrical release by Cohen Media Group later this year - A preview before its theatrical release by Cohen Media Group later this year, this film is also screening as part of the series “Enemy Territory – Fritz Bauer & Postwar Germany” at the Goethe Institute featuring: Murderers Among Us (Die Mörder Sind Unter Uns), Dir. Wolfgang Staudte (1946); Yesterday Girl (Abschied Von Gestern – Anita G.), Dir. Alexander Kluge (1966); The General (Die Akte General), Dir. Stephan Wagner, for TV (2016); and the documentary Fritz Bauer - Death By Installments (Tod Auf Raten), Dir. Ilona Ziok (2010)
Silent from Greece, with director Yorgos Gkikapeppas in person

Women directors:
History’s Future from The Netherlands, with director Fiona Tan in person
The Lure (Córki dancingu), from Poland (directed by Agnieszka Smoczynska)
Simshar from Malta, with director Rebecca Cremona in person
The Summer of Sangaile (Sangailes vasara), returning to New York from Lithuania (directed by Agnieszka Smoczynska)
The Wednesday Child (A szerdai gyerek), from Hungary, (directed by Lili Horváth)

Lampedusa in Winter (Lampedusa im Winter), from Austria (directed by Jakob Brossmann), with cinematographer Serafin Spitzer in person
Spartacus & Cassandra, from France (directed by Ioanis Nuguet)
The Spirits Diary (Rakijaški dnevnik), from Croatia (directed by Damir Čučić)

Another filmmaker in person:
Home Care (Domácí péce), from Czech Republic, with director Slávek Horák in person

I hope to see them all!


Nora Lee Mandel is a member of New York Film Critics Online and the Alliance of Women Film Journalists. Her reviews are counted in the Rotten Tomatoes TomatoMeter:

Complete Index to Nora Lee Mandel's Movie Reviews

Since August 2006, edited versions of most of my reviews of documentaries/indie/foreign films are at Film-Forward and, since 2012, festival overviews at FilmFestivalTraveler. Shorter versions of my older reviews are at IMDb's comments, where non-English-language films are listed by their native titles.

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