International Film Festival draws to a close
The International Film Festival will conclude tonight with a free screening of ‘Cell 211’
Published: Friday, November 9, 2012
Updated: Friday, November 9, 2012 02:11
This week marked the fourth annual Corvallis International Film Festival, a collaborative event held by Oregon State University’s school of language, culture and society during November. A different international film was featured each night during the week, with works coming from various regions across the globe.
The festival in its current form began back in 2009, when OSU language professors Nabil Boudraa, Guy Wood and Sebastian Heiduschke worked together to create an event featuring French, German and Spanish movies to show to students in their film classes. In 2010, language and literature professor Susana Rivera-Mills suggested they open the event to the public, which contributed to the development of this week’s event.
In 2011, fundraising allowed the festival to move off-campus to its current location at the Darkside Cinema in downtown Corvallis.
The course traditionally corresponding with the festival is FLL 399, a one-credit elective course taught in English and meeting only during the week of the festival. During the course, taught by professor Heiduschke, students learn the basics of film analysis. In addition, students in the course are able to compare the international cinema featured at the festival to domestic U.S. cinema. The course is open to all students.
Each of the films shown during the week were selected by faculty members at OSU.
On Monday night the festival featured a French film from 2010 titled, “My Afternoons with Margueritte,” in which a nearly illiterate man in his 50s (Gérard Depardieu) befriends an older, highly intelligent woman.
Sophomore Erica Foster studied French for four years in high school and attended the showing.
“I really enjoyed watching the film because it was unlike any I had seen before,” Foster said. “It’s really interesting to explore media forms from different cultures.”
Tuesday’s film, “Barbara,” followed a doctor who relearns the meaning of trust and self-sacrifice. The drama, starring German actress Nina Hoss, is being considered as a nomination in the 2012 Academy Awards’ Best Foreign Language Film category.
“We were only the fifth place to play [Barbara] in the [United States],” said Heiduschke. “I had to do hard negotiations with the U.S. distributor to get the film to Corvallis for a night.”
Japan’s 2006 flick, “Kamome Diner,” was featured at the theater on Wednesday. This comedy, by Japanese director Naoko Ogigami, told the story of a Japanese woman who set up a Japanese diner in the Finnish capital of Helsinki.
China’s 2010 film “Kora” was shown at the festival on Thursday, in which a Taiwanese youth undergoes a tiresome yet enlightening journey to fulfill his brother’s final wish.
“It was quite fascinating to see how films are made in other countries,” said freshman Ben Hamplin. “It’s clear that international directors focus on different aspects than their American counterparts.”
Heiduschke highly recommends taking the trip out to the festival for those who have never experienced foreign cinema.
“The films we show at the festival are usually not available in the [United States], and some of them will never be in distribution, even though they are hits in their native countries,” Heiduschke said.
Today is the last day of the 2012 festival. The 2009 Spanish film “Cell 211” will be screened twice at the Darkside Theater, with one showing starting at 6 p.m. and the second at 8 p.m. The theater is located at 215 SW 4th St. in Corvallis.
In the film, Spanish actor Alberto Ammann plays the roll of a newly-hired prison officer who finds himself in the midst of a riot after an unfortunate turn of events.
It is encouraged that viewers get to the theater early, as space fills fast and there is limited seating available.
Heiduschke left some inspirational words for those considering stopping by.
“These films are gateways to other cultures, and you can travel without even leaving your chair,” Heiduschke said. “College is supposed to be a time to explore, to discover, to learn. All of this can, and should, be fun.”
Lara von Linsowe-Wilson, news reporter