News

International premier - A Fire In The Cold Season - Q&A

2/25/2020

Director Justin Oakey will be present at the festival for the international premier of his film A Fire in the Cold Season (2019). This marks his return as a director three years after the film Riverhead (2016). A Fire in the Cold Season follows a similar theme as his previous films, that is life in Newfoundland with a hint of drama and mystery. If his previous film Riverhead talked of a bloody feud in rural Newfoundland, his newest movie brings the theme to a more “hunter and prey” approach. In A Fire in the Cold Season, a reclusive trapper by the name of Scott (Stephen Oates, from Riverhead) sees himself thrown into an unexpected situation when a dead body is found on the side of a river. The event brings him side by side with Mona (Michaela Kurimsky), a young and strong-willed mother-to-be. Soon they come to depend on one another as they get dragged into a reality of violence and are hunted down by outlaws. The movie is reminiscent of Cormac McCarthy’s western narratives (No Country for Old Men, The Road, Blood Meridian, The Counselor), with a realistic, heavy paced mood where nothing is certain but the promise of despair in a violent world. Justin Oakey has been in love with storytelling since childhood, but decided to follow the path of film narrative after being inspired with a few high-school video projects. When working on films set in Newfoundland, such as A Fire in the Cold Season, Justin Oakey tends to portray the island as realistically as possible, taking inspiration from people close to him as he inserts cinematic narrative elements into the picture. The director Justin Oakey will be present at the premier in this year’s Stockfish Film Festival for a session of Q&A with the audience, a unique opportunity for film enthusiasts and fans of his work alike. His movie Riverhead received 2 awards and 2 nominations, amongst them it won the People’s Choice Award in the Charlottetown Film Festival (2017), as well as the Jury Award in the Nickel Independent Film and Video Festival (2017). A Fire in the Cold Season is bound to deliver a thrilling experience to the audience.

H.P. Lovecraft and Nicholas Cage at Stockfish 2020!

2/24/2020

Now here is something for Lovecraft and Nicholas Cage fans. For some this goes together, others not so much but undeniably both Lovecraft and Cage have their own devoted fan base. Color Out of Space with Nicholas Cage as the lead will be our special Midnight Madness screening at Stockfish Festival on Friday the 13th of March. Richard Stanley returns with the film Color out of Space after two decades but his last film was the cyberpunk debut “Hardware” that came out in 1990. He grew up in South Africa and learned to love Lovecrafts work when his mother read his stories to him as a child. He was specifically fond of Color out of Space but strangely Color out of Space is said to be the cult writer favourite out of the many short stories he has written. In an interview with Los Angeles Times Stanley says: "“I was a lonely, creepy kid who spent most of my time doing crayon drawings of monsters,” Stanley said with a smile. In that childhood, he says, the fantastic was an escape and a way to deal with the discord in his parents’ relationship. Years later, “Color Out of Space” would serve a similar purpose.” Stanley wrote the adaptation of the screenplay himself along with a co-writer Scarlett Amaris and together they decided to set the story in modern days rather then the time the original story is set in. As such it doesn’t seem to disappoint Lovecraft fans as it was both chosen Best Film as well as winning the Audience Choice at a special Lovecraft Film Festival last year. In short for those who have not read the book the story is about the Gardner family who moves to the country side to escape modern distraction and city hassle. However their rural reality becomes anything but after their land gets hit by a meteorite changing their lives into a living colourful nightmare. Don’t let this one pass you by as there will only be one screening at 11PM on Friday the 13th of March. Tickets are now available on Tix !

Director Karim Aïnouz - guest at Stockfish with his award-winning film, Invisible Life!

2/19/2020

Stockfish is proud to announce that the award-winning director, visual artist and screen-writer Karim Aïnouz will be a guest at the festival this year. His film, Invisible Life, has received 26 nominations and 14 awards, including top prize in the Un Certain Regard section at last year’s Cannes Film Festival. Invisible life is an adaption of the novel “The Invisible Life of Eurídice Gusmão” by Martha Batalha about the bond between two sisters who are forced apart by their father. They seek to find each other again, thinking they live in separate continents, while in fact co-existing in the same city. The book was given to mr. Aïnouz the same year his mother would have turned 90 years old just like the main character, Eurídice, and it touched him on a deep personal level. In an interview with Variety last year, mr. Aïnouz explains: “it would be so important if people who met my mother knew what she had to go through. Both of them worked, my grandmother and my mother. When I read the book, I felt, wow, finally somebody is talking about what it was like to be a woman at that time in Brazil, but also in the world. Adapting the book, I realized I could pay homage not only to my mother, but also to her generation.” The film has had phenomenal reception, both by audiences and juries worldwide, for its empathetic interpretation of the two female characters and what they go through.

Award-Winning Documentaries at Stockfish - Nordisk Panorama Focus!

2/13/2020

And now something for the documentary fans. Three award winning docs from last year's Nordisk Panorama screened at Stockfish followed by Q&A's with two directors and one producer of the films. The filmmakers will also participate in a Nordic Documentary Panel at Stockfish moderated by a representative from Nordisk Panorama. Q’s Barbershop The opening film of Nordisk Panorama 2019 Q’s Barbershop was quite the hit with it’s audience in Malmo last year. The film follows Q a barber that runs a barbershop in Vollsmose who became a bit of a star at the festival. In the film the audience gets a sneak peak into the community that has formed around the barber as his clients. They look to Q not only for a cool haircut, but also to get advice on any problem they may face. The director, Emil Langballe will answer questions from the audience after the screening. The film has received four nominations as best documentary at The Danish Film Awards, Nordisk Panorama, Oslo Pix and CPH:DOX. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LoLZsLpWif8 Humanity on Trial Humanity on Trial won the Nordisk Panorama audience award. The film follows a young Dane, Salam Aldeen, who goes to Greece along with others to rescue refugees crossing the ocean. One night he gets arrested while looking for a family who’s lost at sea. Accused of human smuggling, he might end up serving life in a Greek prison. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nU7FciL1UWI Lindy the Return of Little Light The third and final film won Best New Nordic Voice last year and the producer China Åhlander will accompany us in the Q&A afterwards. The film is directed by Ida Persson Lännerberg and follows an artist that has always had a hard time fitting in. He fled into a fantasy world as a child where he was the super hero Little Light - a boy who could spread light across the world. Today, acclaimed and loved for his interpretations, he’s asked by a theater in Berlin to get up on stage as himself to tell his story. But can he do that without harming his loved ones? https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MjWaCmyk7Kk

Award-Winning COMEDIES at Stockfish!

2/6/2020

Three comedies have been chosen for Stockfish 2020 that combined have so far received 39 award nominations. Statistically comedies haven’t been the most successful when it comes to winning awards and nominations in film festivals. These three however have caught the attention of festival juries worldwide. Extra Ordinary First off is Extra Ordinary, co-directed by Enda Loughman and Mike Ahern, which has had it’s audience laughing out loud from start to finish. The story is about a woman who works as a driving instructor but has a special gift of seeing beyond this world. Even though not too keen on her extraordinary talent she decides to help a possessed little girl. The script is said to be brilliantly written and combined with phenomenal acting and great directing the outcome seems to win the audiences hearts along with number of awards. So far the film has brought home 10 wins out of 14 nominations last year. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=x1TvL5ZL6Sc It Must Be Heaven Next is It must be heaven about a Palestinian man who decides to escape his homeland to look for a new home. However it doesn’t seem to matter how far he travels or where he goes. Something always reminds him of Palestine. It’s the award winning director Elia Suleiman who writes, directs and acts in the film. He must be in heaven because, so far, he has bagged 9 award nominations and 3 wins, one of being the FIPRESCI Prize in Cannes. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=w6blvldmt6c Give Me Liberty Last but not least is the American independent film Give me liberty by Kirill Mikhanovsky. Yet another comedy from last year with great many awards but it has 5 wins out of 13 nominations. It follows a medical transport driver in Milwaukee, America's most segregated city. He is one of those people who wants to please everyone and just can’t say no. When riots break out he stands before a very difficult decision which no people pleasing type of person should ever have to make. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YR8nVCExVo4&t=36s Three perfect opportunities for the film buffs to get their “not as much of a film buff” friend to accompany them to the cinema. Everyone loves a good comedy.

The Award Winning: BACURAU and SYNONYMS at Stockfish 2020!

1/30/2020

Bacurau won the Jury Prize at Cannes last year and Synonyms The Golden Bear at Berlin International Film Festival. Two very intriguing choices worth seeing. Synonyms , comedy drama, directed by Nadav Lapid is a story about being pressed between two cultures. It has elements of autobiography as it is based on the director's personal experience. “one day, as if I had heard a voice out of nowhere, like Joan of Arc or Abraham the patriarch, I realised I had to leave Israel. Leave right then, immediately and forever. Uproot myself from the country, flee, save myself from an Israeli destiny. Ten days later, I landed at Charles-de-Gaulle airport. I chose France because of my admiration for Napoleon, my passion for Zidane, and a couple of Godard movies I had seen two months earlier. I had basic French, no permit or visa, and I knew no one. But I was determined never to come back. To live and die in Paris.” Even though based on his own experience, Nadav uses the liberty of fiction and poetry to create a story with many layers, meanings and metaphors. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9u1HtImIb6s Bacurau , action adventure mystery, is a co-operational project between two friends, Kleber Mendonca Filho and Juliano Dornelle. The idea for the film came about when both of them where attending a film festival in Brazil eleven years ago. “at that major festival with its lavish budget, we had social contradictions before our eyes every day. Bacurau grew out of our observations, annoyance and desire to surprise people by showing this poor, remote part of the world getting revenge on people who consider them "simple," "funny" or "fragile" when they are just as complex and interesting as everybody else.” The two friends wanted to make a film they both wanted to see. The outcome is a gory western that takes place in the future, however the whole look of the film is very vintage. An interesting combination that becomes it’s very own. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Fhjqvb60LLw Tickets can be bought here.

MONOS and THE PAINTED BIRD – First titles introduced for Stockfish 2020!

1/27/2020

Two award winning films and audience favourites are the first titles to be announced for Stockfish Film Festival 2020. The Painted Bird and Monos are both war dramas that explore the effects of war on the young spirit and mind. The Painted Bird by Vacláv Marhhoul has made quite an impression for it’s dynamic cinematography and brutal content. The story is based on a novel by Jerzy Kosiński about a young Jewish boy who was sent to stay with an aunt in a foreign country in an attempt to save him from the holocaust. Shortly after his arrival the aunt dies unexpectedly and the boy is forced to make it on his own in a brutal world of war and chaos. The film is filmed on an unusual format when it comes to modern film making but the director Vacláv has this to say about his unusual choice of format: “We shot the film on 35mm black-and-white film at 1:2:35 aspect ratio. Cinemascope is a richly emotive format. No other format can capture, with such accuracy and force, both the beaty andthe cruelty playing out on the screen.” - Vacláv Marhhoul https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ECUiSb2WEvU Monos examines the chaos and fog of war from the unique perspective of adolescence, banding together a diverse young cast of seasoned professionals and untrained neophytes thrust into an unforgiving, irrational and often surreal environment where anything can happen — even peace. The story starts off on a remote mountaintop setting somewhere in Latin America. A rebel group of teenage commandos perform military training exercises while watching over a prisoner and a conscripted milk cow for a shadowy force known only as The Organization. After an ambush drives the squadron into the jungle, fracturing their intricate bond, the mission begins to collapse. Many who have seen the film have described a strong resemblance to Lord of The Flies and apparently the book had some influence on the director as well as another famous novel: “Lord of the Flies and Conrad’s Heart of Darkness have allegorical powers that span way beyond their specific time, conflict or country. Also, both novels have something that lingers in your subconscious, like a totem pole, like some sort of tattoo.” https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=disclpVzoMQ Despite thematic similarities between these films, The Painted Bird and Monos offer two very distinct but equally intriguing cinematic experiences. We'll keep you posted as there is more to come.

SHORTFISH 2020 open for submissions! Stockfish & KUKL shortfilm competion

1/22/2020

The short film competition Shortfish is now open for submissions for the 6th time. More applicants can apply this time as the Stockfish committee has decided all films produced in 2019 or later can submit. The purpose of the competition is to allow young and upcoming film makers to showcase their work and help them grow further in the field. Marzibil Sæmundardottir, the festival director, says that the Stockfish board wants to give more film makers an opportunity to apply for the competition without limiting their chances to take part in other festivals. 'It's important for aspiring film makers to be able to show their work in more then one festival. In addition we want to give the reward to the best of the best last year rather then limit the competition to films that have not been premiered before.' Last years winner XY by Anna Katrin Larusdottir has now been invited to nine film festivals both in Iceland and abroad. The winner this year will receive 1 million Icelandic krona voucher at one of the leading film equipment rentals Kukl. The six chosen films will travel around North America and Kanada next year with Taste of Iceland as special representatives for Iceland film industry. Admission The films can be no longer then 30 minutes and not been premiered before 2019. Only Icelandic films can be submitted, or films that are either directed or produced by Icelandic citizens. In addition the film needs to have English subtitles. Please send applications to stockfish@stockfishfestival.is before the 20th of February. Topic: SPRETTFISKUR. Include following information: Name of film. (Icelandic and English title) Directors nameProducers nameName of filmShort synopsis (in English and in Icelandic)Premier dateLink to film with a password if neededContact information