Director of Italian Cultural Institute to open film festival

Published 30 July 2010

movie_theatre_smallDr Alessandra Bertini, Director of the Italian Cultural Institute in Sydney, will officially open the 7th Armidale International Film Festival.

The Institute is a sponsor of this year’s festival, which will run at the Belgrave Twin Cinema, Armidale, over the weekend of 6-8 August.

Dr Mario Inglese, a lecturer in Italian at UNE sponsored by the Italian Government, said that the Institute’s involvement in the film festival reflected Italy’s important contribution to the world of cinema, and the educational role of Italian films as a showcase of Italian language and culture. UNE has a strong and long-standing relationship with the Italian Government.

The festival will begin with the screening of the Italian film Pranzo di ferragosto (“Mid-August Lunch”) at 7.15 pm on Friday 6 August, after Dr Bertini’s opening talk at 7 pm. Pranzo di ferragosto is the winner of several international awards, including the Pasinetti “best film” award at the 2008 Venice Film Festival.

At 8.30 pm, after the screening of Pranzo di ferragosto, an “Italian wine reception”, with wine supplied by the Institute, will give ticket-holders a chance to savour tastes – as well as sights and sounds – of Italy. Finger food will also be served at the reception. The screening at 9.15 pm of El secreto de sus ojos (“The Secret in Their Eyes”) from Argentina, winner of this year’s Oscar for “best foreign language film”, will conclude the opening night of the festival.

The festival had its beginnings in 2004 as part of UNE’s 50th anniversary celebrations, and is supported by the University’s School of Arts. Among other things, it celebrates – and fosters awareness of – the diversity of national cultures represented in the university city of Armidale.

The members of the organising committee are present and former staff members of UNE, as well as people from the wider Armidale community. The festival is held in close cooperation with Services UNE and the Belgrave Twin Cinema, and is also supported by ABC New England North West.

This year’s festival program comprises 13 recent, award-winning films from Italy, Argentina, Israel, Bulgaria, Germany, Turkey, the UK, Austria, Denmark, Japan, South Korea, France and Spain. They include Das weisse Band (“The White Ribbon”) from Austria, winner of the 2009 Palme d’Or at Cannes, Un prophète (“A Prophet”) from France, winner of the 2009 Cannes Grand Prix, and Madeo (“Mother) from South Korea, winner of the “best film” award at the 2010 Asian Film Awards.

For program and booking details, go to: www.belgravecinema.com.au.