On Friday the full Birds Eye View Film Festival 2009 programme went LIVE and luscious on our site.
So what’s new? Since the beginning of BEV I’ve always insisted on the range of films women make – how we mustn’t patronise and pigeonhole our female talent by suggesting that we’re ‘good at relationship dramas’ or ‘chick flicks’ (perish the thought!), and yet we can truly celebrate the emotional complexity, fresh perspective and depth that women inevitably do bring to the screen, given half a chance. This year that rings loud and clear. BEVFF09 is hot, powerful, daring and… I love it!
Spurred on by credit crunch sponsorship woes, we’ve streamlined and are showing slightly less films this year. But the result is a distilling, a strengthening of the programme – every single film is a powerful hit that you’d be better off not missing. BEV is five and she’s packing no punches.
Here’s how this year’s festival kicks some seriously sexy booty:
– Mary Harron, maker of American Psycho (which I re-watched last night and am stunned again by it’s simplicity, intelligence and perfection), I Shot Andy Warhol and The Notorious Bettie Page will be at the festival for a masterclass and retrospective. This is the first time we’ve had an A-list international film director visit the festival with a retrospective of her own work, and it’s a woman who delightfully defies all categorisation.
– Screen Seductresses – our BFI Southbank retrospective this year is all about the trangressive temptress power of 20th century women. Early lesbian icons, vampires who drive men wild to destruction, femmes fatales intent on revenge – these ain’t no girls next door.
– August 15th: a short film in our Opening Night programme, is the most terrifying, gripping, brutal (and brilliant) short film I’ve ever seen.
– Frozen River – a first feature from Courtney Hunt that must be spinning her life around: it won at Sundance, is passionately supported by Mr Tarantino himself, and now has TWO Oscar-nominations! It’s a tense, taught thriller that deals with motherhood in the context of crime, poverty, and ice.
– Bishi, Broken Hearts DJ, Plaster of Paris, Goldierocks – are just a few of the rocking musicians we have lined up – both through the vamp strand (live music to silent film) and at our vamped-up Closing Night Awards Party.
– We’re going full-frontal with the issues and debating Sex on Screen. A crucial issue for women in film, and for women as viewers. Let’s face it, with 93% film directors being male (and I’m not talking about porn… yet) it’s hardly a female-pleasure centred picture that we’re accustomed to seeing!
So, we at BEV HQ celebrated this first major milestone on Friday night, which happened to be Tam’s (development manager) 30th b’day party and Daniela’s (lead programmer) last office day… with Emilie (festival manager) throwing some legendary shapes on that dancefloor, and the bearded hubby’s of Tam and I looking remarkably like Tweedle Dum and Dee… IF ONLY I’d had my camera!