Buenos Aires fest gets under way


BUENOS AIRES -- The 10th annual Buenos Aires International Festival of Independent Cinema kicks off in the Argentine capital Tuesday night with a screening of Brazilian documentarian Eduardo Coutinho's "Jogo de Cena" (Playing).

The 13-day festival will screen hundreds of features and shorts and include workshops, concerts and open-air screenings.

Eighteen films from more than a dozen countries will compete in the international category, while nine locally produced features will show in the Argentina category.

"The BAFICI has always been a festival of discovery that incorporates the best of other international festivals. It's a generous festival in terms of its lineup and affordable ticket prices," BAFICI artistic director Sergio Wolf said.

Films dealing with conflict, injustice and environmental themes will screen in the out-of-competition Earth Shakes program, including Fausta Quattrini's "La Nacion Mapuce," about the indigenous inhabitants of Patagonia, and Kevin MacDonald's recent Nazi-related documentary, "My Enemy's Enemy."

The BAFICI has grown in popularity and scope in recent years and is now considered one of Latin America's premiere independent film festivals. Organizers expect to top last year's record attendance of 260,000. More than 41,000 tickets were sold for screenings before the festival's opening.