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'Travel the world' invite as wraps come off Inverness Film Festival 2021 line-up with eagerly anticipated movies, documentaries and shorts set to be screened at Eden Court and Cromarty Cinema

By Hector MacKenzie

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This year's Inverness Film Festival opens with The Road Dance.
This year's Inverness Film Festival opens with The Road Dance.

HIGHLAND film buffs are being invited to travel the world from the comfort of their cinema seat after a frustrating period of lockdowns and restrictions on movement.

The invitation from Eden Court's Paul MacDonald-Taylor was issued today with the launch of the full programme for the 19th Inverness Film Festival (IFF).

And this year will see an exciting tie-up with Cromarty which will also be screening a number of films during the eagerly anticipated November event.

The IFF – running from November 5 to 11 – returns fully formed this year after last year's pared-back mini-festival which saw a greatly reduced capacity due to the pandemic.

It opens with Richie Adams’s The Road Dance on Friday, November 5 and closes with Michael Showalter’s The Eyes of Tammy Faye on Thursday, November 11th.

This year's event features new international cinema in full-capacity screenings with 36 features and over 30 short films across six days.

Tickets go on sale this morning.

This year’s opening film is the Lewis-set drama The Road Dance, a story that takes place against the backdrop of the first World War, based on the acclaimed novel by John MacKay.

The Eyes of Tammy Faye is amongst the highlights.
The Eyes of Tammy Faye is amongst the highlights.

Festival closer The Eyes of Tammy Faye is an intimate look at the extraordinary rise, fall and redemption of televangelist Tammy Faye Bakker, played by Jessica Chastain in what has been described as an unforgettable, virtuoso performance.

Other highlights include work from many of the most exciting contemporary directors who have screened at the festival in recent years, amongst them Celine Sciamma (Petite Maman), Clio Barnard (Ali + Ava), Apichatpong Weerasethakul (Memoria) and Julia Ducournau (the Palme d’Or-winning Titane).


The festival will also preview Paul Schrader’s new crime drama The Card Counter and Pablo Larrain’s offbeat Royal-drama Spencer.

The festival visits Iceland for the striking Noomi Rapace-starring horror, Lamb.
The festival visits Iceland for the striking Noomi Rapace-starring horror, Lamb.

New World Cinema takes us to Iceland for the striking Noomi Rapace-starring horror Lamb, Romania for Radu Jude’s provocative satire Bad Luck Banging or Loony Porn, Northern France, where Juliette Binoche is caught Between Two Worlds, and Sudan for the beguiling You Will Die at Twenty, the first Sudanese film to be submitted for the Academy Awards.

Documentary features at this year’s festival include a powerful look at art and resistance in Belarus (Courage), the joyful archive of an environmental legend in Becoming Cousteau, the thrilling story of Castro’s Spies and Andrea Arnold’s highly anticipated debut doc Cow.

The Scottish Documentary Institute’s emerging talent initiative Bridging the Gap also delivers two intimate and thought- provoking collections.

The critically-acclaimed road movie Hit The Road is featured.
The critically-acclaimed road movie Hit The Road is featured.

Elsewhere, the cinema of Iran is the focus of Afternoons in Iran, which boasts Panah Panahi’s irreverent critically-acclaimed road movie Hit The Road and Mohammad Rasoulof’s urgent Iranian executioner anthology There is No Evil.

In Scottish film, Riptide director and star Tim Barrow will join audiences to discuss his ‘Schizophrenic love story’, which challenges the stigma of mental illness.

Pablo Larrain’s offbeat Royal drama Spencer.
Pablo Larrain’s offbeat Royal drama Spencer.

This year’s short film programme offers screenings from the Glasgow Short Film Festival, a showcase from the University of the Highlands and Islands, and two child-friendly collections from the Discovery Film Festival, Scotland’s International Film Festival for Young Audiences.

Plus, in artist’s moving image, the work of Inverness- born Jamie Kane is celebrated in a screening of his experimental film work, alongside a sculpture and sound exhibition by Jamie and Ian Kane, The everted rim of a vase.

Eden Court has also confirmed two late additions to the programme from internationally acclaimed auteurs: Jane Campion’s The Power of the Dog and Asghar Farhadi’s A Hero.

Paul MacDonald-Taylor, Inverness Film Festival director and head of film + visual art at Eden Court, said: “I’m so excited about the Inverness Film Festival this year. After last year’s mini festival it’s been wonderful being able to submerse myself in some fantastic films from around the world in order to select what we will be showing.

"We’ve had almost two years of not being able to go anywhere, but at the festival you can travel around Europe, Africa, Asia, Australia and the Americas. There is a selection of new short films from Scotland, and our first screenings of new work from the students at UHI.

"Come along to Eden Court and Cromarty Cinema to experience some of the best new films from around the world."

See the programme at https://eden-court.co.uk/inverness-film-festival-2021

Cromarty Cinema benefits from emergency funding

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