Wednesday, January 31, 2007

IFFR Dutch Films

This year Rotterdam had massive difficulties with their catalog. The festival opened on Wednesday and the catalog wasn’t ready. They did have a handy little guide that has grids of when and where all the screenings are, including press and industry screenings, which also contains two- to three-sentence descriptions of the movies. But they didn’t have the big book with the in-depth descriptions. Thursday was the first full day of the festival, and they were saying they hoped to get the book out by Friday. Well, they finally got the catalog out on Saturday, but by the time I showed up to get mine they told me they had run out, and could I come back on Monday. So I finally got my catalog halfway through my stay at the festival.

That’s not good. Not to mention the catalog is incomplete.

A piece of paper in each catalog says this: “Due to technical problems there has been a delay in the delivery of our catalogue. It also appeared that some titles were not included, which are listed below. Full information of these titles has already been published on” Then it lists the titles that aren’t there.

What it doesn’t list are the Dutch movies that are playing in the festival. After each title there is a two-letter code that says what section of the festival each title is in, like TG = Tiger, and KA = Maestros: Kings & Aces. That sort of thing. Well, there’s one symbol that’s not explained anywhere, and that is DT. I must assume that means “Dutch” because they are Dutch films. But that’s nowhere to be found in the little catalog or the big. The little catalog has the two- to three-sentence descriptions of these films, but the big catalog omits them entirely.

Are they ashamed of their own cinema? They shouldn’t be. I saw one comedy called Waiter that I liked quite a bit. Apparently it’s already been in the theaters in the Netherlands. It must not have gotten international distribution, and that’s a shame because it was very amusing.

I think I’ve been here a week already. The festival haze is starting to kick in. I’ve been averaging almost four movies a day, I’ve seen 24 movies so far, and I think I have 2 and a half days of viewing left. I’ve liked some movies quite a bit, disliked a few, thought a bunch were “not bad.” Par for the festival course, eh?

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