Febiofest, Prague’s biggest and most casual moviegoer-friendly film festival, kicks off today, March 23 at the Prague 5 multiplex CineStar Anděl, overtaking all 12 screens at the venue through next Friday, March 31.
Over the course of April, the festival will move on to Liberec, Ostrava, Brno, and other cities across the Czech Republic.
What makes Febiofest so great? Alongside a handful of international premieres competing for top prizes at the fest, most of the 150+ films screened are high-profile holdovers from top fests of 2016 like Cannes, Toronto, and Telluride that have yet to see wide release.
While the committed festival-goer may not find a lot of new blood among the program, Febiofest gives the more casual movie fan a chance to see a number of standout films that have yet to open wide.
Bonus: tickets are a mere 99 CZK (nearly half the price of a regular multiplex ticket) and can all be purchased in advance from the festival website of CineStar Anděl, avoiding the passholder queues of most big film fests.
Full schedule and all relevant information can be found at the Febiofest website, but here are eight of the films I’m most looking forward to:
New Alejandro Jodorowsky? I’m in. The director’s trippy cult movies El Topo and The Holy Mountain are two of my favorite films of all-time, and any chance to see a rare film from the 88-year-old filmmaker is a chance to savor.
The latest film from Ben Wheatley (Kill List, A Field in England, High-Rise) has been described as a 90-minute shootout. It looks to be the director’s most conventional yet.
Paul Verhoeven’s 2016 comeback opened to widespread acclaim and a Oscar nomination for star Isabelle Huppert; here’s your chance to see it on the big screen in Prague with English subtitles.
On the Milky Road
Eclectic Serbian filmmaker Emir Kusturica (Underground, Arizona Dream) will be on hand to present his latest film, starring Monica Bellucci. It premiered to some acclaim at last year’s Venice Film Festival.
Oliver Assayas’ latest, a ghost story starring Kristen Stewart that was partially shot in Prague, divided audiences at Cannes last year. It just opened in the states, but a Czech release has yet to be set.
This Indonesian actioner features the star and some of the filmmakers behind the wonderful The Raid movies. The brutal action scenes have received heaps of praise, even from critics who didn’t dig the film as a whole.
Yes, a newly-remastered 4K print of David Lynch’s 1986 classic. Just in time to get in the mood for the director’s new season of Twin Peaks, 25 years in the making, which will hit Showtime later this year.