Buenos Aires Film Festival announces 25th anniversary line-up 

The festival will run from April 17 to 28, featuring 260 films amid government cuts to the national industry

The Buenos Aires Independent Film Festival (BAFICI) announced some of its line-up amid government cuts to the Argentine film industry. This year’s 25th festival will run from April 17 to 28, featuring 260 films in 13 venues across the city.

Organized by the Buenos Aires Culture Ministry, BAFICI will open with a screening of School Privada Alfonsina Storni, the latest from cult filmmaker Lucía Seles, who topped the Argentine Competition last year with Terminal Young.

The festival’s Closing Film will be José Luis García’s Fuck You! The Last Show, a documentary about 1980’s cult band Sumo and their 1987 show in Obras stadium, two months before the death of their now legendary lead singer Luca Prodan.

BAFICI’s announcement comes at a difficult time for the Argentine film industry, following the government’s decision to cut all state funds for film production. Last week, the government suspended the operational funding of the National Institute of Film and Audiovisual Arts (INCAA) and terminated thousands of contracts as part of its austerity plan for the public sector. 

While there are fears these severe budget cuts will affect the organization of film events (such as the Ventana Sur film market and the Mar del Plata International Film Festival) and the operations of public film school ENERC, BAFICI has managed to stay afloat because it’s mostly funded by the Buenos Aires City government. 

This year, the festival adds Cinépolis’ Plaza Houssay multiplexes to its venues, which include the Cacodelphia theaters near the Obelisco, the Buenos Aires Film Museum, the San Martin complex theaters, and the state-owned Gaumont Cinema which became a landmark site of the film industry’s outcry against the government’s decision. Last week, a peaceful demonstration by the film community at the Gaumont Theater ended with police repression, tear gas, and four people arrested.

The official announcement included some of the non-competitive sections of the program, such as Careers, which features films by established and renowned independent filmmakers. Some of the titles this year are the latest from Ruth Beckermann (Favoriten), Julio Bressane (Leme do destino), Bruce LaBruce (The Visitor), Jonas Mekas (Requiem), Alexander Kluge (Cosmic Miniatures), Néstor Frenkel (Después de Un buen día),  Bruno Dumont (L’Empire) and Cristi Puiu (MMXX).

The announcement also included special tribute sections to late Argentine maverick director Jorge Polaco — on the 10th anniversary of his death — and pioneer filmmaker Eva Landeck, one of the first women directors in Argentina. 

The Rescues section will offer two Argentine films previously featured in BAFICI: Diego Lerman’s Suddenly (20029) and Sandra Gugliotta’s Possible Lives (2007). Other “rescues” include Martin Scorsese’s classic After Hours and Wim Wenders’ Paris, Texas.

This year, Bafici will also have its own website https://bafici.org with festival information and ticket sales. 

Tickets are AR$1500 (AR$1200 for students and senior citizens) and can be purchased online starting on April 9 at 10 a.m., or in person at the following theaters:

  • April 9 to 28: Teatro San Martín (Av. Corrientes 1530)
  • April 18 to 28: San Martín Cultural Center  (Sarmiento 1551), Espacio INCAA Gaumont Theater  (Av. Rivadavia 1635), Cinépolis Plaza Houssay (Av. Córdoba 2135), Cinearte Cacodelphia (Av. Pres. Roque Sáenz Peña 1150)


All Right Reserved.  Buenos Aires Herald