ROME – The Rome Film Festival, in its enth reconfiguration, has unveiled a decidedly disparate lineup for its ninth edition with a more marked populist accent comprising comedies and genre pics along with promising auteur fare – including 24 world preems – all in artistic director Marco Mueller’s self-described “suitably schizophrenic” signature style.
Contending with impediments dictated by Italian politics and the economy, Mueller in little over three months has assembled an attractive, if less abundant, mix of goods made of 51 pics innovatively divided in five sections: competition, out-of-competition, gala, mondo genre, and Italian perspectives.
The competition sees world bows of Russian auteur Aleksey Fedorchenko’s “Angels Of Revolution,” which had been announced; and also Italo helmer Claudio Noce’s Alps-set thriller “The Ice Forest,” (pictured) marking Emir Kusturica’s first lead thesping role; German helmer Christoph Hochhausler “The Lies of the Victors,” a thriller about the dark underbelly of contempo politics in Germany; Belgian director and Cannes regular Gust Van den Berghe’s “Lucifer,” the third instalment in his triptych about the emergence of human consciousness, this time in horror form; and young Afghan/German helmer Burhan Kurbani’s “We Are Young. We Are Strong,” which is about xenophobic riots and comes after Kurbani’s “Shahada,” which competed in Berlin.
Making do with a slashed budget – down to around $7.6 million from about $21 million when the fest started in 2006 – Mueller has done away with having a main jury and instead adopted an interestingly modified Toronto fest prizes model in which ticket holders will vote the winners of each of the five sections.
U.S. director Jonathan Nossiter (“Mondovino”) will head a jury dedicated to first and second works.
As for U.S. titles, Rome will host the Italo preems of David Fincher’s “Gone Girl,” Dan Gilroy’s “Nightcrawler,” toplining Jake Gyllenhaal, and Kevin Smith’s chiller “Tusk,” among others. Richard Gere will be coming to tubthump Oren Moverman’s “Time Out of Mind,” in which he plays a homeless man estranged from his daughter; Kevin Costner is coming to launch Mike Binder’s “Black and White,” and helmer Brad Anderson is booked for an onstage conversation and the European preem of his period thriller “Stonehearst Asylum.”
Fest will run October 16-25.
ROME FILM FESTIVAL OFFICIAL SELECTION
“Angels of Revolution,” Aleksey Fedorcenko (Russia)
“Biagio,” Pasquale Scimeca (Italy)
“Sand Dollars,” Laura Amelia Guzman Conde and Israel Cardenas (Dominican Republic, Argentina, Mexico)
“The Ice Forest,” Claudio Noce (Italy)
“The Narrow Frame of Midnight,” Tala Hadid (U.KK, France, Morocco)
“Lucifer,” Gust Van den Berghe (Belgium, Mexico)
“The Lies of the Victors,” Christoph Hochhausler (Germany)
“Lulu,” by Luis Ortega (Argentina)
“The Maias Story of a Portuguese Family,”Joao Botelho (Portugal)
“Mauro,” Hernan Rosselli (Argentina)
“I Milionari,” Alessandro Piva (Italy)
“NN,” Hector Galvez (France, Germany)
“Obra,” Gregorio Graziosi (Brazil)
“12 Citizens,” Xu Ang (China)
“Time Out Of Mind,” Oren Moverman (U.S.)
“We Are Young. We ARE STRONG,” Burhan Qurbani (Germany)
“Andiamo A Quel Pese,” Salvatore Ficarra and Valentino Picone (Italy)
“Black and White,” Mike Binder (U.S.)
“Buoni A Nulla,” Gianni Di Gregorio (Italy)
“Eden,” Mia Hansen-Love (France)
“Escobar: Paradise Lost,” Andrea Di Stefano (France, Spain, Belgium)
“Giulio Cesare – Compagni Di Scuola,” Antonello Sarno (Italy)
“Gone Girl,” David Fincher (U.S.)
“As The Gods Will,” Takashi Miike (Japan)
“Kahlil Gibran’s The Prophet,” Roger Allers, Gaatan and Paul Brizzi, Tomm Moore, Nina Paley, Bill Plympton, Joann Sfar, Michal Socha, Joan C. Gratz and Mohammed Saeed Harib (Canada, France, Lebanon, Qatar, U.S.)
“The Knick,” Steven Soderbergh (U.S.)
“Love, Rosie,” Christian Ditter (U.K., Germany)
“Phoenix,” Christian Petzold (Germany)
“Soul Boys Of The Western World,” George Hencken (U.K.)
“Soap Opera,” Alessandro Genovesi (Italy)
“Still Alice,” Richard Glatzer, Wash Westmoreland (U.S.)
“Trach,” Stephen Daldry (U.K.)
“Tre Tocchi,” Marco Risi (Italy)
“A Girl Walks Home Alone At Night,” Ana Lily Amirpour (U.S.)
“Haider,” Vishal Bhardwaj (India)
“Nightcrawler,” Dan Gilroy (U.S.)
“When I Was Alive,” Marco Dutra (Brazil)
“Next Time I’ll Aim For The Heart,” Cedric Anger (France)
“Stonehearts Asylum,” Brad Anderson (U.S.)
“Tusk,” Kevin Smith (U.S.)