The International Film Festival & Awards Macao (IFFAM) hones in on first and second time film-makers who are likely to attend and likely to remember Macau for their future films. By drawing attention to their work, the festival spotlight and cash prize become more meaningful than for more established directors.
This year, IFFAM competition brings three female directors’ productions to screens in town.
The Good Girls
Mexican director Alejandra Marquez Abella debut as a feature-length filmmaker began at the Toronto International Film Festival in 2015 with the premiere of her poignant and soulful Semana Santa. The Good Girls is her second film, which had its world premiere at Toronto International Film Festival (TIFF). The film is made by a female crew, “I had a female cinematographer (Dariela Ludlow), and, of course, the cast is a whole bunch of women. The whole mood of the shoot was… about being a woman” the director told TIFF, “We were trying to criticize but also understand them (women in Mexico) — to understand their aspirations and desires. That was the conversation that we had on the set, on- and off-camera.”
A well-to-do socialite Sofia and her husband must wrestle with the impact of Mexico’s 1982 economic crisis. Sofia will have to maintain appearances but she has to acknowledge that her loss of status is inevitable. She will also have to learn how to live without the money she has always taken for granted.
Berlin-born director Eva Trobisch enrolled in a master’s program in screenwriting at the London Film School in 2015 and All Good is her first and graduation film. It had its world premiere at Filmfest München in June this year and won German Cinema New Talent awards for best director and actress as well as the FIPRESCI award.
Janne’s new boss’s brother-in-law slept with her against her will. She conceals the incident and continues her way of life as usual. But her silence has consequences, though, and not just for her relationship with her boyfriend.
Argentine director Barbara Sarasola-Day has worked in the industry since 2000. Her first feature Deshora (2013) – a co-production between Argentina, Colombia and Norway – had its world premiere in the Panorama section of the Berlin Film Festival and went on to play many festivals around the world. She considers that she is starts to film in a good time and good place, “ There were probably directors that had it harder than me. For me it was like, “Oh, she’s a girl. Nothing strange.” Probably for the ones who came before it was a bit harder. That’s one of the characteristics of the New Argentine Cinema as a movement—there are many female directors there.” White Blood is her second film.” according to Filmlinc Daily’s interview.
Martina and Manuel cross the border from Bolivia to Argentina as drug “mules”. When taking refuge in a border town hotel, Manuel dies with the cocaine capsules inside his body. But the drug traffickers don’t care. They still demand that Martina deliver the drugs she has swallowed and the drugs in Manuel’s body to a nearby city. There is no way out. There is only one person she can ask for help, Javier, the father she has never met. She calls him and asks him to come to the hotel. He owes her, after all.