Belfast Telegraph

Film festival rolls out a reel feast of movies

By David Young

The 16th Belfast Film Festival rolled out the red carpet last night with its biggest programme ever - 133 films from 30 countries in 10 days.

The line-up for the movie marathon includes new international cinema and documentaries, critically acclaimed television, features and shorts from local film-makers, and plenty of post-screening discussions across the city.

Last night's launch at Belfast's Movie House featured Oscar-nominated Turkish teen rebellion film Mustang.

Guests attending during this year's event will include widely renowned English screenwriter and director Terence Davies, rising young Irish star Killian Scott, and Londonderry-born actress Antonia Campbell-Hughes.

Festival director Michele Devlin has been in charge of the festival since its beginning.

Speaking to the Belfast Telegraph, she said: "The festival has gone from strength to strength over the years - it's getting better and better every time.

"This year's festival promises some truly exceptional world cinema including Argentinian Mafia family drama The Clan; Japanese Yakuza thriller Mr Six; the Don Cheadle biopic of Miles Davis, Miles Ahead, and black comedy Swansong featuring a superb cast of British and Irish talent

"For me, the standout film is the Northern Ireland premiere of Stephen Frears' new film Florence Foster Jenkins, starring Meryl Streep and Hugh Grant.

"It's a biopic of a tuneless but charismatic opera singer - and I hear Meryl Streep gives a simply incredible performance. She's already being tipped for an Oscar.

"We're all really looking forward to seeing that film."

At last night's festival launch young Ulster film-maker Leo McGuigan was on hand at the Movie House to talk about the local premiere of Braxton, his new film set in Belfast.

"It's a Belfast take on Eighties slasher movies," he said.

"It's kind of a fun throwback to those days.

"And it's really exciting to be showing it here in Belfast for the first time in front of a home audience."

Produced by Margaret McGoldrick and billed as a shameless love letter to slasher cinema of the past, present and future, Braxton had its world premiere at the Fright Night Film Festival in Kentucky.

It will will be screened on Sunday 17th at the Movie House on Belfast's Dublin Road at 8pm.

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