Athens International Film Festival

Land of Ashes

25/09/19, 18:00, ODEON OPERA 1
26/09/19, 22:30, DANAOS 2
27/09/19, 20:15, ODEON OPERA 2

Curious about her first kiss, experiencing the first pangs of love and with her grandfather trying to make up for an absent mother, 13-year old Selva discovers that death is a constant transition linking all living beings. An ethereal directorial debut from Costa Rica  and a memorable leading lady make for a tropical kingdom of magical realism within which the supernatural becomes the optimal remedy to loss.

COSTA RICA, ARGENTINE, CHILE, FRANCE | 2019 | COLOR | DCP | 82΄ | SPANISH

If you are one of those people who love subtle, detailed stories in the tiniest of packages, you will surely find Sofía Quirós’s debut film one of the barely visible jewels hidden in the land of ashes of today’s ethnographic cinema. If you join the dots you will take in the whole of the Caribbean at the seaside village of Limon province in Costa Rica, you ‘ll fill your head with the sounds of the Central American night, lose yourself among the fire smokes, the snakes, the ghosts, the magic and a child’s coming-of-age.

The main theme seems ordinary, the approach is not. The poetic new realism, the spontaneous love for nature, the intricate metaphysical, reminiscent of Peter Weir, and the story of a 13 year-old living with her grandparents and the ‘manifestations’ beating her loneliness, create a winning film – if anything, for the grace of the young protagonist, Smachleen Gutiérrez, a truly blissful revelation. I.D.

DIRECTOR: Sofía Quirós Ubeda
SCREENWRITER: Sofía Quirós Ubeda
DoP: Francisca Saéz Agurto
ΜUSIC: Wissam Hojeij
EDITOR: Ariel Escalante Meza
PRINCIPAL CAST: Smachleen Gutiérrez, Humberto Samuels, Hortensia Smith, Keha Brown

SOFÍA QUIRÓS UBEDA
30year-old director and screenwriter, born in Buenos Aires. Her short film ‘Shelva’ was shown during the Critics’ Week at Cannes 2017, earned her many distinctions and has been the spark for her debut feature film, ‘Land of Ashes’, its natural continuation.

FILMOGRAPHY
2019 Land of Ashes



    Publication date: 2019-09-06 00:11:19

    A Colony

    A Colony

    In a small Canadian town in the country, a shy girl on the verge of puberty gets a first taste of the discriminatory and deep-seated prejudice of the adult world that awaits her. An emerging director offers up an excellent coming-of-age film dealing with social issues and justly wins the Crystal Bear award at the Berlin Film Festival.

    Monsoon

    Monsoon

    After 30 years, a young man returns to Vietnam, a country he and his parents were forced to leave when he was little. A foreigner in a foreign land, he shares a one-night stand with Lewis which will lead to so much more. An exotic nod to “Weekend”, this touching film elevates a love story to a beautiful existential journey about the need to belong. The screenings of the film are dedicated to the memory of Zack Kostopoulos / Zackie Oh. The first screening (19/09) will be introduced by Zoe Kokalou from the “Justice for Zack/Zackie” initiative.

    Nova Lituania

    Nova Lituania

    Lithuania in the late 30s. With the threat of Poland potentially invading the country, a geographer approaches the government with a radical plan to move the country to another part of the planet and call it “Nova Lituania”! An incredible, yet true story, brought to light in this sardonic debut, the aesthetics of which are on a par with Pawlikowski's “Cold War”, and with the addition of subtle sarcasm and political surrealism.

    House of Hummingbird

    House of Hummingbird

    Set against the backdrop of a rapidly expanding country, following numerous unsuccessful attempts at sex eploration, a young girl, whose family is falling apart and who is surrounded by people who don't understand her, walks the challenging path to adulthood and towards an ever-changing modern-day world. A director from S. Korea delivers the most awarded debut of 2019 (25 wins so far at some of the biggest film festivals abroad).

    Premature

    Premature

    Spending her carefree summer days in Harlem, a 17-year old girl meets and falls in love with an older man. He seems like the ideal boyfriend, the chemistry between them is amazing but time and circumstances may work against them. A tender ballad of the city and a disarming boy-meets-girl love story which among other things introduces the revelatory Zora Howard who stars and pens the script for this film.

    A White, White Day

    A White, White Day

    Somewhere in freezing Iceland, a local police officer becomes obsessed after learning of his wife's unfaithfulness, two years after she died in a car accident. The director of the stunning “Winter Brothers” returns with a story of sorrow, revenge and above all unconditional love. Ingvar Sigurdsson won the Rising Star Award during the Critic's Week of the Cannes Film Festival. In attendance of the lead actor, Ingvar E. Sigurdsson