Jonathan Melville: Festival’s in good hands with Fujiwara

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WITH 146 features from 53 countries shown over 12 days in June, it’s fair to say the 2013 Edinburgh International Film Festival has something for everyone, and then some.

I’ve already mentioned the opening and closing night films before in this column, Drake Doremus’ Breath In and John Mackay’s Not Another Happy Ending respectively. The latter should be of interest to Doctor Who fans in particular as it stars one-time Amy Pond, Karen Gillan.

One film I hoped would turn up in the programme is Upstream Colour, which the EIFF describe as ‘a uniquely nightmarish cinematic journey’.

Probably not for the easily offended, this doesn’t appear to have a UK release yet and is generating some polarised reviews online.

Local filmmakers are well represented by Mark Cousins’ A Story of Children and Film; David Cairns’ Natan and a clutch of new short documentaries from the Scottish Documentary Institute’s Bridging the Gap scheme.

There’s a chance to hear actor Robert Carlyle in conversation and animation legend, Richard Williams of Who Framed Roger Rabbit? fame, will also be in town.

Jurassic Park makes a welcome appearance in the programme, this time in IMAX 3D, while younger viewers might want to check out the premiere of Monsters University, the sequel to 2001’s Monsters, Inc.

For the retrospectives, check out seasons celebrating Richard Fleisher and Jean Grémillon.

It’s hard to fault artistic director Chris Fujiwara’s approach, as he mixes the well-known with the unfamiliar. There’s a feeling that we’re in good hands here and that taking a chance on a new director or genre could open our eyes to something exciting or challenging.

When was the last time you felt like that at the cinema?

@jon_melville

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