Renewed interest in fantasy and horror cinema is often seen in times of social and economic turmoil. During April, Brussels hosts one of the biggest fantasy film festivals in the world. Over 50,000 visitors are expected for the 37th Brussels International Fantastic Film Festival (BIFFF), from 9 April to 21 April. This year 97 movies have been shortlisted, showcasing the latest movies from the fantasy, horror, thriller and science fictions genres from around the world.
Italy comes up with not only extremists seeking refuge in an asylum centre in ‘Go Home‘, but also fascism incarnation in Il Duce Mussolini himself, making a comeback in the twenty-first century ‘I’m back’. Scandinavian filmmakers focus on cross-border terrorism (‘The Unthinkable’) and climate disasters (‘The Quake’). From Korea, ‘Take Point’ threatens to unleash the Third World War, while from the US, ‘The Dead Ones’, tries to come to terms with multiple mass murders.
Several dystopia movies are also screened. ‘Level 16′ confronts the audience with the cosmetic exploitation of orphans. ‘Rock Steady Row’ makes a devastating judgment about the American education system, and ‘Aniara’ plans a forced exodus to the planet Mars, based on the book by Swedish Nobel laureate Harry Martinson’s published in 1956.
For those who persist in believing in mankind, there are several interesting releases with ‘Pet Sematary’, ‘Hellboy’, ‘Iron Sky 2’ (The coming race), ‘Greta’, ‘Assassination Nation’, ‘The Beach Bum’, ‘Dragged Across Concrete’, and ‘Little Monsters’.
In total out of the festival’s 97 films screening, there will be eleven world premieres, ten European premieres, and an international selection of movies taking audiences to the far corners of India and Thailand. In addition, there are some interesting local movies to watch out for, with nine Belgian feature films or co-productions, including ‘The Room’ (with Olga Kurylenko and Kevin Janssens), ‘Play Or Die’, ‘Extra Ordinary’, and ‘The Hole in the Ground’.
Among the numerous novelties is the very first ZOMBIFFF Run, during which the participants run the risk of getting caught up with zombies roaming through the streets of the capital in what is certain to look like quite an apocalyptic setting in the heart of Brussels.