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28th Raindance Film Festival Films A-Z

Features

April 7, 1980 (dir: Nadav Schirman, Israel). World Premiere. Award-winning documentary filmmaker Nadav Schirman (The Green Prince) directs this tense hostage drama set in a Kibbutz nursery. POLITICO

A Dim Valley (dir: Brandon Colvin, USA). International Premiere. In this queer hallucinogenic fairytale, a biologist and his two pot-smoking assistants working deep in the Appalachian woods encounter a trio of mystical backpackers. QUEER

After So Many Days (dir: Jim Hanft, Samantha Yonack, USA). European Premiere. The raw personal account of Jim and Sam, a singer-songwriter duo who uprooted their lives by attempting to play one show every day for a year – putting their music, health, career, and their first year of marriage to the test. First feature. SONICA

Antarctica (dir: Keith Bearden, USA). World Premiere. Two teenage misfits face the pressures of sex, drugs, gun-crazy janitors, and time-travelling boyfriends in this fresh dramatic comedy. GENERATION Z

Beyond Moving (dir: Vikram Dasgupta, Canada). European Premiere. Documenting gifted ballet dancer Siphe November, following his journey from South African township to the world of professional ballet. First feature. ARTY

Born to Be (dir: Tania Cypriano, USA). UK Premiere. An intimate look at how the work of Dr Jess Ting at New York’s groundbreaking Mount Sinai Center for Transgender Medicine and Surgery impacts the lives of his patients, as well as his own life. QUEER

Citizen Penn (dir: Don Hardy, USA). European Premiere. Actor and filmmaker Sean Penn joins aid workers from around the world to help the relief effort following 2010’s devastating Haiti earthquake. POLITICO

Descent (dir: Nays Baghai, Australia). UK Premiere. Documenting Dutch ice freediver Kiki Bosch, who dives into the world’s coldest waters without a wetsuit as therapy for the trauma of sexual assault, and to inspire others. First feature. FEMALE GAZE

Different Johns (dir: Robert Carr, France). European Premiere. Feature documentary exploring the different lives of John Cohen: folk musician, photographer, filmmaker, and one of the great faces of the 50s Beat Generation. SONICA

Drag Kids (dir: Megan Wennberg, Canada) UK Premiere. Touching documentary chronicling four drag performers under the age of 12. Having faced enormous scrutiny over their brief drag careers, the young stars prepare for the biggest performance of their lives at Montreal Pride. First feature. QUEER

Eastern (dir: Piotr Adamski, Poland). UK Premiere. A brutal, gun-wielding tale of two families entangled in a never-ending blood vendetta. DISCOVERY

Ella Es Cristina (dir: Gonzalo Maza, Chile). UK Premiere. Executive produced by Salma Hayek, the first feature as director by Oscar-winning screenwriter Gonzalo Maza (co-writer of 2018’s Best Foreign Language Film A Fantastic Woman) is the tale of two women in their 30s who are still living like they did in their teenage years. FEMALE GAZE

End Game: Breaking The Silence (dir: Pierre-Emmanuel Luneau-Daurignac, France). UK Premiere. Documenting one of the biggest taboos in sport today, this unprecedented investigation covers a variety of sports over a period of two years, showing that sexual violence is not limited to isolated incidents, and reveals the abuse of an entire system. POLITICO

Endless Sunshine on a Cloudy Day (dir: John Connors, Ireland). International Premiere. A heartbreaking account of the final months of social influencer Jade McCann, it portrays an Irish family battling to stay together despite the odds. First feature. DISCOVERY

FOMO – Fear of Missing Out (dir: Attila Hartung, Hungary). UK Premiere. One night, at a drunken house party, vulnerable Lilla falls victim to four teenage friends when a dare gets out of hand, and the youngsters’ world changes forever. First feature. GENERATION Z

Force of Habit (dir: Reetta Aalto, Alli Haapasalo, Anna Paavilainen, Kirsikka Saari, Miia Tervo, Elli Toivoniemi, Jenni Toivoniemi, Finland). UK Premiere. Seven directors depict the lives of various women on one day; their stories illustrate the normality of sexual harassment and abuse. FEMALE GAZE

He Dreams of Giants (dir: Keith Fulton, Louis Pepe, UK). UK Premiere. Following their 2002 documentary Lost In La Mancha, filmmakers Keith Fulton and Louis Pepe return to follow Terry Gilliam’s new (successful) attempt at filming The Man Who Killed Don QuixoteARTY

I Am Not A Hero (dir: Pablo Crutzen Diaz, Robin Smit, Stijn Deconinck, Belgium). European Premiere. Timely and often harrowing portrayal of Belgian health workers combating COVID-19. First feature. POLITICO

Jimmy is Punk – The Story of PANIC (dir: Duco Donk, The Netherlands). UK Premiere. A punk story about the 1976 Dutch band Panic: capturing the pure undiluted spirit of punk. First feature. SONICA

Kosa (dir: Mohit Priyadarshi, India). World Premiere. A young boy from India’s forest heartlands in picked up by the police because his name is similar to that of a Maoist commander. Will the farcical trial that follows prove his innocence or confirm he’s a criminal? First feature. POLITICO

Madame (dir: Stéphane Riethauser, Switzerland). UK premiere. Using private archive footage, this family saga challenges the taboos of gender and sexuality as a flamboyant 90-year old and her gay grandson explore the development and transmission of gender identity in a patriarchal environment. QUEER

Materna (dir: David Gutnik, USA). With a cast including Kate Lyn Sheil, Jade Eshete, Lindsay Burdge, Rory Culkin and Assol Abdullina (in a role that won a Best Actress award at the Tribeca Film Festival), it portrays four women whose lives are bound together following an incident on the New York subway. DISCOVERY

My Thoughts Are Silent (dir: Antonio Lukich, Ukraine). UK Premiere. A champion at festivals including Karlovy Vary, this oddball drama follows an over-tall sound engineer and his diminutive mother, as they head to the mountains to record the sound of a very rare bird. DISCOVERY

Nafi’s Father (dir: Mamadou Dia, Senegal). A double-winner at Locarno Film Festival (Best First Feature & Golden Leopard: Filmmakers of the Present), it’s the story of an Imam and his powerful extremist brother as they fight over a family marriage, illustrating how a small village community can drift towards extremism. DISCOVERY

Non Western (dir: Laura Plancarte, UK/Mexico/USA). UK Premiere. Documenting the challenges faced by a Native and Non-Native couple in Montana ahead of their wedding. FEMALE GAZE

Not To Be Unpleasant But We Need To Have A Serious Talk (dir: Giorgos Georgopoulos, Greece). UK Premiere. Dark comedy about a womanizer who must inform his ex-girlfriends that he’s a carrier of a sexually transmitted virus, lethal only for women. ABSURDITIES

Now (dir: Jim Rakete, Germany). UK Premiere. Felix Finkbeiner, Luisa Neubauer, Greta Thunberg and Vic Barrett are challenging the status quo and pushing for social and political change – but what does it feel like to be an activist in 2020? A DIRTY WORLD

Nuclear (dir: Catherine Linstrum, UK). UK Premiere. The feature debut by Cannes Un Certain Regard and Welsh BAFTA award-winning short filmmaker Catherine Linstrum, this tense drama stars George MacKay, Emilia Jones, Sienna Guillory and Oliver Coopersmith. GENERATION Z

Once You Know (dir: Emmanuel Cappellin, France). UK Premiere. Exploring energy depletion and runaway climate change, it questions how will we cope with an ending world. A DIRTY WORLD

Our Own (dir: Jeanne Leblanc, Canada). European Premiere. Rising star Emilie Bierre plays a 13-year old who falls pregnant in this complex and compelling small-town drama. GENERATION Z

Punta Sacra (dir: Francesca Mazzoleni, Italy). UK Premiere. Evocative documentary about the community who live in an impoverished area outside of Rome: a favela-like settlement that is destined to be torn down. POLITICO

Shoot To Marry (dir: Steve Markle, Canada). European Premiere. Lovelorn filmmaker Steve Markle decides the perfect way to meet women is to ask them to be in his documentary – the result is a real-life romantic comedy. ABSURDITIES

Stardust (dir: Gabriel Range, UK). UK Premiere. Starring Johnny Flynn (Emma, Beast) as a young David Bowie embarking on his first trip to America, Stardust reveals the inspirations and life events that gave birth to his iconic alter ego, Ziggy Stardust, charting the transformation of one of the world’s greatest cultural icons. OPENING GALA

Suffocation (dir: Kenya Márquez, Mexico). UK Premiere. An albino woman newly released from prison, spends her nights taking care of a hypochondriac obsessed with avoiding sudden death. Their relationship moves through suspicion, fear and compassion to tenderness and love. FEMALE GAZE

Survival Skills (dir: Quinn Armstrong, USA). European Premiere. Presented as a lost training video from the 1980s, with Golden Globe winner Stacy Keach as narrator, it tells of a good policeman trying to resolve a domestic violence case. DISCOVERY

Ties (dir: Daniele Luchetti, Italy). UK Premiere. A marriage-in-crisis drama set in Naples and Rome, with a cast including Alba Rohrwacher (Venice Best Actress award winner for Hungry Hearts) and Luigi Lo Cascio. FEMALE GAZE

The Average Color of The Universe (dir: Alexandra-Therese Keining, Sweden). European Premiere. In a life severely marked by the loss of her son, a woman lingers in the borderlands between memory and reality, in this visually stunning portrayal of grief. FEMALE GAZE

The Dilemma of Desire (dir: Maria Finitzo, USA). UK Premiere. Executive produced by Oscar-winning documentary filmmaker Barbara Kopple, it follows four women artists/activists who aim to shatter myths by celebrating the clitoris and female sexual pleasure. FEMALE GAZE

The Eagle’s Nest (dir: Olivier Assoua, UK). UK Premiere. The story of two girls from Cameroon intent on migrating to Europe, they’re portrayed as unlikely superheroes in this surreal fantasy with a rich impression of African culture. ABSURDITIES

The Great Green Wall (dir: Jared P. Scott, UK). UK Premiere. Executive produced by Oscar-nominee Fernando Meirelles (City of God), it follows Malian musician, actress and UN Ambassador, Inna Modja on an epic journey along Africa’s ambitious Great Green Wall. A DIRTY WORLD

The Mystery of the Pink Flamingo (dir: Javier Polo Gandia, Spain). With contributors including John Walters and Eduardo Casanova, this eccentric documentary follows a man obsessed with flamingos on his quest to unravel the real story behind this pink socio-cultural phenomenon.ABSURDITIES

The Past is Always New, the Future is Always Nostalgic (dir: Gen Iwama, Japan). UK Premiere. Intimate documentary capturing Japanese photographer Daido Moriyama, aged 80, whose work transcends art, fashion and design. First feature. ARTY

The Price of Progress (dir: Victor Luengo, Spain). UK Premiere. Documenting both sides of the argument around the controversy of GMO foods. A DIRTY WORLD

The State of Texas vs. Melissa (dir: Sabrina Van Tassel, France). European Premiere. Documenting a life plagued by poverty and prejudice, this is the story of the first Hispanic woman to be sentenced to death in Texas as she faces her last appeal. POLITICO

The Woman with Leopard Shoes (dir: Alexis Bruchon, France). World Premiere. Pared-back Hitchcock-style thriller about a burglar who is hired by a mysterious woman to steal a box from a house, but the sudden arrival of party guests forces him to hide. First feature. DISCOVERY

TOPOWA! – Never Give Up (dir: Philip Sansom, Inigo Gilmore, UK). UK Premiere. Celebrating the power of music to change lives, it follows four youngsters and the Brass For Africa band on a journey of hope from Uganda’s Katwe slums to the streets of London and the Cheltenham Festival. SONICA

True North (dir: Eiji Han Shimizu, Japan/Indonesia). European Premiere. A young boy must learn to survive when his father disappears and the rest of his family is sent to a notorious political prison camp in North Korea. This powerful animation is the first feature by manga producer and Zen master Eiji Han Shimizu. POLITICO

Twiceborn (dir: Hiroshi Akabane, Japan). European Premiere. After receiving a message from the spiritual world, a man realises his mission is to lead humankind to happiness. He becomes a successful businessman while secretly publishing spiritual messages, but the devil’s temptation shakes his mind. OFF-COMPETITION GALA

Under My Skin (dir: David O’Donnell, Australia/USA). Liv Hewson and Alex Russell star as a free-spirited artist and a straight-laced lawyer respectively, whose love is tested by questions of gender. QUEER

Uprooted – The Journey of Jazz Dance (dir: Khadifa Wong, USA). International Premiere. Exploring the lineage and future progressions of jazz dance, from its Afro-American roots to Broadway, with contributors including Debbie Allen and Joshua Bergasse. ARTY

Willow (dir: Milcho Manchevski, Republic of North Macedonia/Hungary/Belgium). UK Premiere. This Academy Award nominated and Venice Golden Lion winning director portrays three women from medieval times and the present as they struggle by various means to become mothers. FEMALE GAZE

Shorts

A Fallen Fruit (Cambodia) Altered States
Dir: Amit Dubey

A La Carte (Vietnam) International Shorts
Dir: Jay Do

Akhada (India) Documentary
Dir: Sam Nixon

Anchors Away (USA) Animation
Dir: Gabe Mangold

Any Instant Whatever (UK) Animation
Dir: Michelle Brand

As We Fell Into The Sun(UK) HND Showcase
Dir. Ivory Campbell

Being My Mom International Shorts
Dir: Fabio Tucci

Being Someone Else (UK) MA Showcase
Dir: Oyvind Aamli

Birth (UK) Short Competition Winners
Dir: Brody Gusar

Biscuit…Of Death (UK) Lockdown
Dir. Aran Webster

Bratus (UK) HND Showcase
Dir. Christian Schifano

City Of Widows (USA) Documentary
Dir: Lacey Uhlemeyer

Contact (UK) International Shorts
Dir: Sadie Frost

Cover Track (UK) Queer Shorts
Dir: Sam Nutt

Death on Halloween Night (UK) Lockdown
Dir. Amir Kiani

Denim (USA) Queer Shorts
Dir: Daryen Ru

Deus Otiosus (UK) MA Showcase
Dir: Mat Braddy

Do No Harm (UK) UK Shorts
Dir: Douglas King

Enfer (Italy) International Shorts
Dir: Duilio Scalici

Fabulous (UK) Short Competition Winners
Dir: James Skinner

Falling Star (French/Czech Republic) Animation
Dir: Mikhal Bak

Fever: Love In The Time Of Corona (UK) Short Competitions Winner
Dir: Clemily Martin

Firefly (Cuba) Documentary
Dir: Claudia Claremi

Forever (USA) Animation
Dir: Mitch McGlocklin

Frayed Roots (Lebanon) Relative States
Dir: Nay Tabbara

Furlough (Australia) Gone Astray
Dir: Phoebe Tonkin

Gets Good Light (USA) Relative States
Dir: Alejandra Parody

Ghillie (UK) UK Shorts
Dir: Mike Marriage

Ghost Eye (Belgium) Animation
Dir: Wouter Sel, Thijs De Cloedt

Gilbert and George Daytripping (Again) (UK/USA) Documentary
Dir: Iain B MacDonald

Good Thanks, You? (UK) UK Shorts
Dir: Molly Manning Walker

Graindelavoix:st Anthony’s Fire (Poland) International Shorts
Dir: Sebastian Panczyk

Gum (USA) International Shorts
Dir: Jacob Reed

Healing (Switzerland) Altered States
Dir: Adrian Perez

How We Die (UK) MA Showcase
Dir: Alexander Cockburn

I Still Breathe International Shorts

Into The Silver Ether (USA/Belgium) International Shorts
Dir: Vito A. Rowlands

Josiah (USA) International Shorts
Dir: Kyle Laursen

Just A Guy (Germany) Animation
Dir: Shoko Hara

Kanya (India/Czech Republic) Altered States
Dir: Apoorva Satish

Kill Norwood (UK) Queer Shorts
Dir: Lexy Anderson

Killer Workout (USA) Queer Shorts
Dir: Sara Werner

Leave Of Absence (Russia) Relative States
Dir: Anton Sazonov

Liminal (Canada) International Shorts
Dir: Dan Abramovici

Lions In The Corner (USA) Documentary
Dir: Paul Hairston

Mazey Day (UK) MA Showcase
Dir: Martin Tunnicliffe-Squirrell

Measuring Up (UK) Short Competitions Winner
Dir: Eloise Heath

Mine (UK) International Shorts
Dir: Sophia Carr-Gomm

Moonlight Dreams (UK) Relative States
Dir: Souvid Datta

Next Of Kin (Germany/UK) Queer Shorts
Dir: Dean Marriott

No More Wings (UK) International Shorts
Dir: Abraham Adeyemi

Ondine (Poland) Urban Outcast
Dir: Tomasz Sliwinski

Pollie Has The Keys (UK) International Shorts
Dir: Liz Kingsman

Queens (UK) International Shorts
Dir: Nick Bechman

Raw Vision (UK) HND Showcase
Dir. Acacia Khonji

Red Ants Bite (Switzerland) Urban Outcast
Dir: Elene Naveriani

Reappear (UK) International Shorts
Dir: Tommy Clarke

Run On (USA) Urban Outcast
Dir: Daniel Newell Kaufman

Sad Beauty (Netherlands) Animation
Dir: Arjan Brentjes

Sandpaper (UK) UK Shorts
Dir: Michael Mante

Six To Six (Israel) Animation
Dir: Neta Cohen

Skin (UK) Documentary
Dir: Artur Zaremba

Slice Of Heaven (France/UK) International Shorts
Dir: Kourtney Roy

Solitude (Ukraine) Gone Astray
Dir: Yelizaveta Smith

Song Of Clouds (Nepal) Altered States
Dir: Ankit Poudel

Soup (Russia) Relative States
Dir: Inga Sukhorukova

Spirit (Canada) Documentary
Dir: Braden Dereniwski

Stay Hidden (UK) MA Showcase
Dir: James Owen

Stuff (Netherlands) Gone Astray
Dir: Malu Janssen

Sustain (UK) Shorts Competition Winner
Dir: Jake Bentley

The Act (UK) Queer Shorts
Dir: Thomas Hescott

The Bleach (Lebanon/Canada/Qatar) MA Showcase
Dir: Corine Colors

The Cypher (USA) Queer Shorts
Dir: Letia Solomon 

The Dog (Iran) Gone Astray
Dir: Hesam Salehbeig

The Hat (UK) International Short
Dir: Darren Strowger

The Last Ferry From Grass Island (Hong Kong/USA) Gone Astray
Dir: Linhan Zhang

The Last Singer (USA) Documentary
Dir: Ivan Olita

The Last Video Store (UK) Documentary
Dir: Arthur Cauty

The Long Goodbye (UK) UK Shorts
Dir: Aneil Karia

The Mistress (Puerto Rico) Queer Shorts
Dir: Pati Cruz

The Name Of The Son (Argentina) Queer Shorts
Dir: Martina Matzkin

The Owl (Sweden) International Shorts
Dir: Simon Pontén, Joakim Behrman

The Parrot Lady (Cyprus) Animation
Dir: Michalis Kalopaidis

The Silence Of The River (Peru) Altered States
Dir: Francesca Canepa

The Text Kit (UK) MA Showcase
Dir: Vaiginta Perkauskaite

The Water Will Carry Us (China) Altered States
Dir: Shasha Huang

The Yellow Dress (France/UK/USA) International Shorts
Dir: Alex Ko

Tin Luck (UK) UK Shorts
Dir: Beatrix Blaise

To The Girl That Looks Like Me (USA) International Shorts
Dir: Ewurakua Dawson-Amoah

Troublemaker (Nigeria) Relative States
Dir: Olive Nwosu

U Up? (Hungary) Queer Shorts
Dir: Viktória Szemerédy

Umbilical (USA/China) Animation
Dir: Danski Tang

Unraveled (Spain) Animation
Dir: Arden Colley, Asil Atay, Kellie Fay, Isabel Wiegand

Virago (Estonia) Gone Astray
Dir: Kerli Kirch Schneider

White Eye (Israel) Urban Outcast
Dir: Tomer Shushan

Zipper (UK) Shorts Competition Winner
Dir: Paul Mulgrew

Music Videos

Action (USA) Music Videos
Dir: Benjamin Roberds

Alone, Omen 3 (UK) Music Videos
Dir: Jocelyn Anquetil

Best (USA) Music Videos
Dir: Shatara Michelle Ford

Colors (USA) Music Videos
Dir: Kristian Mercado

Epiphany (UK) Music Videos
Dir: Theo Nunn

Estrugamou Lord (Argentina/Germany) Music Videos
Dir: Mateo Yaya

Even If It Hurts (USA) Music Videos
Dir: Cara Stricker

Feeling Lonely (Norway) Music Videos
Dir: Julian Nazario Vargas

Hanna Mash Hu Al Yaman (Israel) Music Videos
Dir: Omer Ben-David

I’ll Come Too (UK) Music Videos
Dir: Matt Meech

Loser (USA) Music Videos
Dir: Scottie Cameron

Never Fight a Man with a Perm (UK) Music Videos
Dir: Al Brown

Repetition (Ireland)  Music Videos
Dir: Kevin McGloughlin

Show Me Love (USA) Music Videos
Dir: Cara Stricker

So Hot You’re Hurting My Feelings (USA) Music Videos
Dir: Caroline Polachek, Matt Copson

Take a Piece (UK) Music Videos
Dir: Emilie Norenberg

Thugs (UK) Music Videos
Dir: James Green

Tremble (UK) Music Videos
Dir: Jessica Wright, Morgann Runacre-Temple

Water Me Down (USA) Music Videos
Dir: Maegan Houang

You’re Born (Russia) Music Videos
Dir: Andzej Gavriss

ZOEA (Taiwan) Music Videos
Dir: Powei Su

ZVER (Ukraine/Germany) Music Videos
Dir: Taisia Deeva