‘The Painter and the Thief,’ ‘Last and First Men,’ ‘Moffie’ Set For Atlàntida Film Fest

Emilio Mayorga

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Benjamin Ree’s “The Painter and the Thief,” Jóhann Johánsson’s “Last and First Men,” Oliver Hermanus’ “Moffie” and Amanda Kernell’s “Charter” are some of the titles announced for the upcoming 10th Atlàntida Film Fest, the largest online film festival in Europe, organized by Spain’s Filmin platform.

The event will take a double format –one on-site in Palma de Mallorca from July 27 to Aug. 2, and another longer online version from July 27 through Aug. 27.

Mainly focused on Europe, final selection will see about 95 titles online –including TV series,– and 4o titles will be screened in theaters in Mallorca, where the Atlàntida Film Fest has been taking place for the past five years.

Benjamin Ree’s “The Painter and the Thief” will open the festival. Premiered in Sundance this year, it won the world cinema documentary special jury prize for creative storytelling. Neon-distributed, it is “a stranger-than-fiction friendship story in which vérité techniques produce unbelievable results,” according to Variety.

The Atlàntida Film Fest will be extended online to Portugal, Greece, Bulgaria, Macedonia and Serbia where a reduced lineup will be accessible, Filmin and Atlàntida fest director Jaume Ripoll told Variety.

Premiered at the Berlinale, the first and last film by Icelandic composer Jóhann Jóhannsson, “Last and First Men” depicts a hyper-evolved “eighteenth-species” world reaching us from a world some way past 2,000,000,000 A.D. It’s adapted from the same-titled novel by U.K. writer Olaf Stapledon.

With Venice-premiered “Moffie,” South Africa’s Oliver Hermanus achieves “his masterpiece with this brutal but radiant story of young gay desire on the Angolan war front,” Variety’s review ran. Other announced titles include Amanda Kernell’s anticipated second feature “Charter,” the feature debut as a director of actor Tom Cullen, “Pink Wall,” and documentaries such as Yung Chang’s “This is not a Movie,” Aneil Karia’s “Surge” and Boris B. Bertram’a “Photographer of War.”

Russian director Aleksei Balabanov will be honored with a complete retrospective of his films.

During the COVID-19 crisis, Filmin hosted other events such as Docs Barcelona –scoring 130,000 views–  and Barcelona arthouse D’A Film Festival, earning  215,000 views.

The Atlàntida Film Fest grants three main prizes —an Audience Award, Critics Award and Jury Award. Fest bestows also an honorary award, received in the past by Roland Joffé, Vanesa Redgrave and Ken Loach.

“I believe that giant festivals will maintain their physical integrity with some occasional online experiences,” Ripoll said about future festivals. Medium-sized festivals with a very strong identity are going to explore this hybrid route, especially with titles that are not distributed nationally.”

“We need to begin to think that the Internet is not the final stage a film’s commercial cycle,” Ripoll added, noting that Atlántida closing feature last year, Marc Collin’s “The Chock of the Future,” went on to be selected by SXSW.

Founded in 2008, Filmin is currently available in Spain, Portugal and Mexico and offers a huge catalog of independent cinema and TV series and a diverse selection of classic titles.

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