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European Film Festival turns up the heat

Published: 
Thursday, May 12, 2016
A scene from The Connection.

The suspense is palpable as the European’s turn up the heat with a series of award-winning films at this year’s European Film Festival. A study on human frailty, indomitable spirit, fear and compassion—the cops, the robbers, the soldiers, the sailors, the lovers and the haters all stake their claim as the drama unfolds, and someone’s got to bear witness. These are some of the stories.

The Connection (La French) 

The Connection is based on the true story of French magistrate Pierre Michel and his relentless crusade to bring down the most notorious drug smuggling operation in history, known as the French Connection. The drama is set in 1970’s Marseille. Michel’s nemesis is the charismatic and wealthy drug lord Gatean “Tany” Zampa, who runs a multi-million dollar heroin trade into the United States. Locked into a cat-and-mouse battle, the fearless magistrate is eventually forced to make the most difficult decision of his life—continue waging his war against La French or ensure his family’s safety before it’s too late.

May 12, 8.30 pm, MT POS

May 19, 3.30 pm, MT POS

May 23, 6.30 pm, MT POS

Marshland

Set in 1980 in the swamp regions of Andalucía, five years after the death of the right-wing Spanish dictator General Franco and during a time of great political volatility, Marshland follows the investigation by two politically and ideologically mismatched cops into the brutal murder of two young girls.

Teenage sisters Estrella and Carmen have been missing for three days. Their angry father, Rodrigo, offers no support, while their mother, Rocio, appears to be an abused wife. Two other unsolved disappearances bear a striking resemblance, and anyone in this sleepy backwater could be the killer. A key suspect is the local stud Quinn, who though arrogant and provocative, seems absolved by the evidence—his DNA doesn’t match that found on the bodies. Still, his love for teenage girls and his relationship with the sisters’ friend Marina sends up red flags, especially when the detectives realise there’s someone else joining their rendezvous in an isolated hunting lodge.

May 14, 6 pm, MT POS

May 18, 6.15 pm, MT POS

May 23, 1.15 pm, MT POS

Simshar

Simshar is inspired by a real life tragedy in Malta, in 2008, in which a small crew of fishermen and an 11-year-old boy set off on a fateful journey that ends with only one survivor and the truth about what actually happened, lost at sea.

Using this event as the catalyst, Simshar’s director, Rebecca Cremona, re-imagines the human drama surrounding the incident and other events happening on that day. In her fictional account, two main stories run parallel. A group of migrants is rescued by a merchant vessel but must remain on board, out at sea for days, as the Maltese and Italian Governments haggle back and forth over who should take them.

Meanwhile, two Maltese fishermen —Simon and his father, Karmenu, accompanied by Simon’s 11-year old son and a former Somali refugee, who has been hired as a crewman— have defied the Government imposed tuna-fishing quotas and set out on one more fishing trip, with devastating consequences.

Simshar, Malta’s first ever submission to the Academy Awards for Best Foreign Language Film, charts a course through the topical issues of migration, loss, despair and international politics, while championing the ability of love to find it’s way through the debris and thrive.

May 17, 8.15 pm, MT POS

MORE INFO

One of the earliest film festivals to launch in T&T, the European Film Festival (EFF) this year celebrates its 20th anniversary with an exciting lineup of films and a chance to win great door prizes.

Tickets for the Festival are $30 for adults, and $20 for children 12 and under, students in uniform or with tertiary-level ID.

Brochures with the full lineup and schedule of films are available at MovieTowne and other locations. Check the European Film Festival—T&T page on Facebook for a list of these locations and for additional, up-to-the-minute information.

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