Armando Bo's 'The Last Elvis' to Open Buenos Aires Film Fest

11:24 AM PST 03/22/2012 by Agustin Mango
"The Last Elvis"

BAFICI will screen over 400 films including 111 local productions.

BUENOS AIRES – Armando Bo’s Sundance competitor The Last Elvis will open the 14th edition of the Buenos Aires Independent Film Festival (BAFICI). The fest’s line-up was announced yesterday at the City’s Galileo Galilei Planetarium by director Sergio Wolf and the City’s Minister of Culture Hernan Lombardi.

An Argentine Elvis impersonator’s tale of misfortunes, The Last Elvis is the first film by Armando Bo, grandson of Argentine cult-director Armando Bo, who back in the 60’s and 70’s directed a series of very popular B-movies featuring erotic icon Isabel Sarli. A restored print of Bo’s 1960 India –which was thought to be lost– will have a special screening at the fest.

One of the top festivals in South America, BAFICI will run from April 11th to 22nd, in 11 different venues in Buenos Aires and will screen a total of 449 films including shorts and -for the first time- Fulldome features at the City’s Planetarium, like Jack Smith’s landmark experimental film Flaming Creatures, and Jay Heinz’s horror flick Jeepers Creepers. The 360° program will also feature Pink Floyd’sThe Wall and Andrea Doubek’s U2, among others.

"BAFICI is one of the most original landmarks in Latin American culture, and City is truly proud of it”, said Lombardi. The fest’s main competition features first and second films and is regarded as one of the best-curated line-ups in the region. Promising local productions such as La Araña Vampiro, by Gabriel Medina (The Paranoids), Los Salvajes, by Alejandro Fadel, and Germania, by Maximiliano Schonfeld will compete with other indie hits such as Maja Milos’ teen drama Clip (top winner at Rotterdam), Australian true-crime Snowtown (FIPRESCI Special Mention at Cannes), Cristian Jimenez’s Un Certain Regard entry Bonsai, and Zach Weintraub’s The International Sign for Choking.

"A film festival must question and reflect on what is cinema every year”, said Wolf at the announcement. “We need to discuss and think about what are cinema’s problems today, like distribution, production, and film formats”, he added, while noting that on this edition only 75 films will be screened in 35mm celluloid prints, as the rest will be all digital.Accordingly, the fest will publish two books: Underworld USA - American Independent Cinema According To J. Hoberman and Notes on the Future of Cinema, a compilation of articles on new film aesthetics and formats written by renowned film critics from all over the world.

BAFICI’s Argentine Competition –acknowledged as the world’s top showcase for New Argentine Cinema– will feature, among others, Villegas, the first full length feature by Gonzalo Tobal (who picked a Cinefondation award at Cannes in 2007 for his short film Now Everybody Seems to Be Happy), Ines de Oliveira Cezar’s Cassandra, Gaston Solnicki’s family-journal Papirosen, and Mariano Luque’s Berlinale entry Salsipuedes. More than 100 local productions will be screened, including 59 films and 52 shorts.

The Focus section, which usually features rather unknown, forgotten, and/or extreme filmmakers, will include 15 programs on directors like Thomas Alfredson, Te-Sheng Wei, Ruth Beckermann, Peter von Bagh, David and Nathan Zellner, and Carlos Prates, all of whom will be attending the festival.

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