Festivals from the Depths of Imagination – European Fantastic Film Festivals

Fantastic films, movies that share the fanciful and imaginative, have been around since the birth of film.  In 1995, the European Fantastic Film Festivals Federation (EFFFF) was created to gather festivals from throughout Europe and offer the films shown the Golden Méliès. The awards are named for legendary of fantastic film, Georges Méliès, the visionary creator of A Trip to the Moon and The Impossible Voyage. These films and other similar to them created in the first two decades of the twentieth century set the tones for the films that would follow.

imgThe Festivals of EFFFF

The member festivals of EFFFF represent the greatest in horror, fantasy, science fiction, and undefinable gatherings in Europe. From Brussels to Estonia, these festivals have been sharing visionary works that are consistently a peek into the minds of the brilliant, and often unusual minds, of today’s directors.

A few of the Festivals that are part of the Méliès include:

Strasbourg European Fantastic Film Festival – September

Brussels International Fantastic Film Festival – March 29 to April 10

Haapsalu Horror and Fantasy Film Festival – April

Molins de Rei Horror Film Festival – November

There are dozens more film festivals that celebrate the unthinkable and the thoroughly imagined.

Past Méliès Winners

The winners of the Méliès are a list of the finest fantastic films of the past 21 years.

  • 1996 – El Dia de la Besta (The Day of the Beast) – dir. Alex de la Iglesia
  • 2000 – Deep in the Woods – Lionel Delpinque
  • 2003 – Tears of Kali – Andreas Marschall
  • 2005 – Duplicity – Harry Cleven
  • 2008 – The Orphanage – Juan Antonio Bayona

The genres range from the purely fantastic, such as “Photographing Faeries” to the deeply terrifying, like “Strigoi”.

All of these films are best defined by their lack of contact with reality (hopefully) and the profoundly intense visions that they embody.

The greatest strength of EFFFF and the Méliès Awards is that they draw their winners and inspirations from across a vast continent that has radically different cultures. The sheer diversity of the films and the visions contained in each frame make this an awards list to binge on.

Article written by Bob Peryea for The Monthly Film Festival ~ Images: Melies ; Melies.Org Facebook Page
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20.3.2016
 

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