Fierce independence

When: Nov. 20-29

Where: Gijon, Spain

Web: gijonfilmfestival.com

Known as Spain’s Sundance, Gijon boasts a rich Argentine presence at this year’s edition. Lisandro Alonso’s “Liverpool,” Celina Murga’s “Una semana solos” and Pablo Aguero’s “Salamandra” play in competition. Lucrecia Martel, meanwhile, will attend a tribute; though one of Latin America’s top auteurs, Martel has only three features to her name. But, says fest director Jose Luis Cienfuegos, “We’re aiming at some briefer retros, where spectators can catch every single title.”

Lebanese directorial duo Joana Hajithomas and Khalil Joreige, who turned heads at Cannes with “Je veux voir,” will also receive a short, accessible career retro.

Further competition titles include Sergey Dvortsevoy’s Cannes Un Certain Regard winner “Tulpan,” Chris Waitt’s “A Complete History of My Sexual Failures,” Bouli Lanners’ hit “Eldorado,” Lance Hammer’s “Ballast” and Kelly Reichardt’s “Wendy and Lucy,” the latter two “undeniable proof of the good health of U.S. indie filmmaking,” Cienfuegos says.

This year the fest offers a head-turning $170,000 in cash prizes; $54,000 of that is for Spanish acquisition of fest-prized pics.

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