CEBU, PHILIPPINES — The Delegation of the European Union to the Philippines and the EU Member States Embassies, together with Cultúr Éireann, Irish Film Institute, Goethe Institut Manila, the Philippine-Italian Association, and Instituto Cervantes de Manila, have announced the run of Cine Europa 25 from September 15 to October 30.
Dr. Ana-Isabel Sanchez-Ruiz, deputy head of the EU Delegation to the Philippines, had the honor of opening the film festival on September 14 at SM Seaside, Cebu City.
“Film is deeply rooted in Europe’s culture which we are very proud about. It mirrors our identity and speaks a lot about our heritage and what we are,” said Dr. Ana-Isabel.
Cebu has been one of the pioneer host cities of the film festival since Cine Europa was brought outside Manila in 2001. Furthermore, for the past 25 years, the festival has been the hallmark cultural event of the European Union Delegation to the Philippines. Beyond showing European films, this program has become a platform to strengthen EU-Philippine cultural relations and collaboration with Philippine cultural institutions and other partners.
With the Covid-19 pandemic easing up, the silver anniversary edition of Cine Europa will follow a hybrid format, opening doors both physically and virtually to every Filipino, while endeavoring to ensure the safety and health of everyone.
On its silver year, Cine Europa brings a whopping 30 films from 15 EU Member States for free. These films may be watched onsite in select venue partners in Cebu City, Metro Manila, Iloilo, and Palawan, or online upon signing up here.
The EU Delegation expressed its gratitude to its constant and valuable venue partners such as SM Cinemas and SM City Cebu Seaside, hosts this year to the festival’s opening, as well as the Film Development Council of the Philippines, National Parks and Development Committee, and the Cultural Center of the Philippines, which will feature Cine Europa films in their indoor and outdoor venues.
The EU Delegation, the European Union Member States Embassies together with Cultúr Éireann, Irish Film Institute, Goethe-Institut, Instituto Cervantes de Manila, and the Philippine-Italian Association, have curated a set of award-winning films showcasing different genres that will attract every viewer. This year, the films on the list put particular emphasis on youth in celebration of the European Year of Youth 2022, and with the guest participation of a Ukrainian film in solidarity with Ukraine and its people, who are victims of an illegal war of aggression and invasion by Russia.
The launch film for Cine Europa’s Silver Anniversary comes from Cyprus and Greece, entitled Páfsi (Pause) which was first screened on September 14.
Páfsi (Pause) is a dramatic film that focuses on a middle-aged woman and the fantasy world that she uses to escape her real-world misery. But what happens when the lines between fantasy and reality start to blur? The film is directed by Tonia Mishiali, a Cypriot whose work focuses on women’s and social issues.
The other films in this silver anniversary edition are:
- Sanremo is a co-production between Slovenia and Italy. Another dramatic film that will tug on your heartstrings. This film revolves around Bruno, his condition that causes him to forget, Duša and Gigliolia Cinquetti’s song “Non ho l’età.”
- Libertad (Freedom), from Spain, is a film about friendship and how two different people from different places and different lives can create a unique friendship.
- Mysi Patri Do Nebe (Even Mice Belong in Heaven) is a co-production of the Czech Republic, France, Slovakia, and Poland. The only animated film in this year’s roster of films, it focuses on unlikely friendships that stem from enemies but in turn become inseparable friends.
- Kapsalon Romy (Romy’s Salon) is described as a well-made, inter-generational film full of tenderness when dealing with the nature of the disease. Directed by Mischa Kamp, who won the Golden Calf Award for Best Director in the Netherlands Film Festival, it is a co-production of the Netherlands and Germany.
- From Ireland is the film Bicycle Thieves: Pumped Up, a comedy about a hot-headed pizza delivery cyclist. This film is described to be part investigative thriller, part heist, and part magical-realist action comedy – promising a wild ride from start to finish.
- Nematoma (Invisible) is a film from Lithuania, Latvia, Ukraine, and Spain that is a drama that has dancing, deception, and revenge. The choreography of this film is described to be as important as the script.
- Lola Vers La Mer (Lola) is a film from Belgium and France. It is an award-winning piece with multiple nominations of the Magritte Awards from the Académie André Delvaux of Belgium, which recognizes cinematic achievement in the film industry.
- Aatos Ja Amine (Gods of Molenbeek) from Finland, Belgium, and Germany is a documentary that looks at area-deprived neighborhoods in Brussels at knee’s hight or through the eyes of children.
- Las Niñas (Schoolgirls) from Spain, is a multi-award-winning drama that focuses on two girls that form a friendship, and their lives in the ’90s. Director Pilar Palomero has said that during filming, she and her actresses felt like young girls again.
- Marina is a Belgian biographical film that is based on the life of Italian Singer Rocco Granata who moved to Belgium when he was young.
- From France is Un Triomphe (The Big Hit), a comedic story of Etienne, an actor who runs a theatre workshop in a prison and brings together an unlikely troupe on tour with a final performance in Paris.
- Seltsimees Laps (The Little Comrade) from Estonia is a children’s film that shows Leelo, a six-year-old that is separated from her mother and vows to be on her best behavior in the hopes of bringing her mother back.
- Dating Amber, an Irish film set in the mid-’90s, is a love letter to all the kids who grew up in a small town and who needed to escape to find or be themselves.
- Tytöt Tytöt Tytöt (A Girl Picture) from Finland is a coming-of-age film released in 2022, nominated in multiple international film festivals, and a winner in the Sundance Film Festival.
- Nech Je Svetlo (Let There Be Light) from Slovakia and the Czech Republic is a drama about Milan, his teenage son, and his journey to find the truth about what happened and about himself.
- Oskar & Lilli – Ein Bisschen Bleiben Wir Noch (Oskar & Lilli – Where No One Knows Us) from Austria is described as a bittersweet odyssey about how Oskar and Lilli Chechen rescues refugee kids, and the many ways of perceiving the world to survive.
- La Vita Facile (Easy Living) from Italy is a comedy about a young woman, a bizarre American, and an Illegal immigrant set between the French and Italian border.
- Granny Project from Hungary is described as a seven-year-long investigation of three young men coming to terms with their heritage through the lives of their grandmothers. The film is both a coming-of-age story for the three young men and a coming-out-of-age story for their grandmothers.
- Bashtata (The Father), a co-produced film from Bulgaria and Greece, is a comedy about Vasil, his son Pavel, and their journey with the loss of Ivanka, Vasil’s wife and Pavel’s mother.
- Never Gonna Snow Again from Poland is described as a dark fairy tale about a masseur who hails from the East and enters the lives of residents in a walled-off community, going door-to-door to heal residents using his hands.
- Im Feuer (Sisters Apart), co-produced by Germany and Greece, is about a German soldier and native Kurd who volunteer to train female Kurdish soldiers in Iraq to fight ISIS with a hidden personal agenda.
- Exil (Exile), a German film by Director Virar Morina, describes the importance of the protagonist’s personality as he integrates into a new society.
- Dopunska Nastava (Extracurricular) from Croatia is a dark comedy about a father-daughter relationship and a school hostage crisis.
- Klondike from Ukraine is described as an angry war film about a Ukrainian family living on the border of Russia and Ukraine as their village gets taken by armed forces and an international plane crash in 2014.
- The Most Beautiful Boy in the World, from Sweden, is a documentary set in 1970 as filmmaker Luchino Visconti traveled Europe looking for the perfect boy to personify absolute beauty.
- Luzzu from Malta is a drama about a Maltese fisherman and his wooden luzzu boat, focusing on his livelihood and family traditions from generations before him.
- Sluzibnici (Servants), a co-production between Slovakia, Romania, the Czech Republic, and Ireland, is a film about Michal and Juraj, students at a theological seminary in Czechoslovakia, and their story as the possibility of dissolution of their school looms over them.
- Krajina Ve Stinu (Shadow Country), a co-produced film from the Czech Republic and Slovakia, is a fictional tale about killings, a growing evil, and the roles of humility and hope in one’s life.
- The Spiders’ Man, from Italy is a dark comedy about two half-brothers and their American friend, and their encounter with a group of inexperienced thugs.
Watch these films onsite or register here to view the films.