Every year, the Government of Kerala organizes the International Film Festival of Kerala (IFFK) under the aegis of Kerala Chalachithra Kala Academy. It is normally conducted in the month of December. During the week-long event, fans of good films throng the streets of the capital city of God’s Own Country for the annual tryst of the best flicks from around the world. Though the country celebrates International Film Festival of India (IFFI) every year at a different venue, the stature of the Kerala version of the event is increasing steadily in the eyes of the movie lovers. This year, the state is organizing the 21st edition of IFFK at various venues across the capital city. The current version of IFFK was kick-started on December 9, 2016. It will screen about 184 movies from over 62 countries. In this blog post, we will detail what all film enthusiasts can expect from this international film festival.
IFFK Becomes Bigger
With the passage of every year, the number of people participating in the Kerala version of International Film Festival is increasing proportionately. Though the budget provided for the Kerala version of film festival is less when compared that for the India Film Festival in Goa, the people’s participation is more in the Kerala version. It is partly due to the movie-educated audience who know very well how to appreciate good films. That is the reason the organizers of IFFK only compile good flicks with appreciable stories and themes. The fans of good films know this only well. This is why the movie enthusiasts from across the country and from abroad make it a point to take part in this festival. Despite the low-budget, people throng the capital city of Kerala because of the quality of movies screened every year.
IFFK – 21stEdition
The latest edition of IFFK got off to a colourful start on December 9, 2016 at Kanakakunnu Palace. This year’s film festival will screen 184 films from over 62 countries. According to the itinerary available, the flick Rafian (Parting) by the debutant director will hit the screens to entertain the audience immediately after the inauguration. For judging the movies, the organizers have constituted a five-member jury. Israel-born Arab filmmaker Michel Khleifi is the head of the jury. The noted actors Baran Kosari and Seema Biswas are also the members of this celebrated jury. The organizers are going to have 490 shows in 13 theatres across the state capital. A total of 15,000 people had applied for getting the delegate passes. However, the authorities issued only 13,000 delegate passes for the state’s biggest cultural extravaganza this year. This edition of IFFK coincides with the “Vajra Keralam Folk Festival”. The state is organizing this folk festival to commemorate the 60th year of the state formation.
Films in the Festival
The film festival has a section on “Effects of Migration”. In this category, there are films that depict the hardships faced by the people while migrating from one country to another. For instance, the flick Raftan talks about the story of Nabi and his girlfriend when they try to migrate from Iran to Europe. Altogether, this section has 8 films. The other curated sections include “Gender Bender” and a retrospective of English flick and television director Ken Loach. Each year, the film festival has a focus country. This year, the focus country is Kazakhstan. Hence, five films from this focus country have also been included in this edition. One of the five flicks is the one directed by the celebrated movie-maker Darezhan Omirbayev. This 2012 flick is loosely based on the work of Fyodor Dostovesky by the name "Crime and Punishment". As part of the festival, the organizers are going to honour noted Czech theatre director, screenwriter and actor Jiri Menzel with Lifetime Achievement Award.