“A few years ago a bunch of friends sat in a bar and discussed the possibility of screening some films from around in the world in Wales. A few of us had been fortunate to attend film festivals around the world, in Amsterdam, in Berlin, but also in Prizren and Jihlava – smaller places, difficult to reach but with a special atmosphere that was hard to match. We had a dream that we could do the same and make Wales a mecca for filmmakers and audiences from all over the world. Now, that dream is a reality” – Dave Evans, Creative Director
The Wales International Documentary Film Festival 2019 (WIDF) is back for its fourth consecutive year between the 7-10th of May and will be held in Chapter, Cardiff. Showing only the best short films that have been made around the world in the last year, the festival boasts a huge range in a variety of different styles and genres. As well as screenings at Chapter Arts Centre, there will be pop-up events across the city – including a BAFTA Cymru event with renowned filmmaker Molly Dineen discussing women’s role in film.
The Wales International Documentary Film Festival is the only festival of its kind in Wales, and has established itself as a filmmaker-friendly, boutique event with an international focus. Creative Director and filmmaker Dave Evans is excited for the festival to connect Welsh filmmakers with others across the globe. He also welcomes the wider community to view some of the best documentary films that they would not otherwise have access to on the international scene.
This year’s feature films line-up includes award-winning international films, following real-life stories from New York, Germany, Brazil and Budapest, among many others. View Arpad Bogdan’s latest work in Ghetto Balboa, an atmospheric black and white documentary exploring one young boxer’s journey to become a professional fighter and escape the poverty of Budapest’s famous ghetto. In a promising revival of the once-prominent Spaghetti Western films, Goodbye Ringo presents the unique stories of the survivors of this now extinct genre, followed by a special second-screening of Into the Dark Room. Journey to the furthest corners of the Himalayas in Piano to Zanskar, where 60-year-old Desmond Gentle attempts the highest-piano delivery in history at 14,000ft. Karen Kramer explores how the legacy left by the likes of Bob Dylan, Jack Kerouac and Allan Ginsberg are influencing the Renegade Dreamers we see across New York today. Home Games tells the deeply personal story of a 20-year old girl from Kiev, who, when tragedy strikes, is forced to choose between her family and her passion. Meanwhile, Kaiser! The Greatest Footballer Never to Play Football tells the tale of the greatest conman in sporting history.
This year, the festival is partnered with Chapter, BAFTA Cymru, S4C, Curzon, Ffilm Cymru, Creative Europe, Atlantic College, Shoot From the Hip Film, On Par Productions, CILECT Network, Cardiff Met, Curado Bar and Film and TV School Wales.
The full programme and ticketing information for all events can be found on their website: http://www.widf.info/
By Rhianna Hurren-Myers