“Cinema has the power to transport us to different worlds and open our minds to various perspectives,” shares Iwona Piórko, European Union Ambassador to Singapore. From 16 to 31 May, the European Union (EU) Delegation to Singapore will bring the best of contemporary European cinema to the heart of Singapore at independent cinema operator The Projector. More than 20 films across the EU and works from local young filmmakers will be showcased at the European Film Festival (EUFF).
While the EU and Singapore are seemingly distinct, the two actually have much in common. As a region comprising 27 member states, the EU is a melting pot of cultures, histories, languages and perspectives. In a similar vein, Singapore is a multicultural society with diverse groups of people from different backgrounds. Using the medium of film, society is not only entertained but is made known of salient issues through the storytelling of these filmmakers.
In our highly globalised world, it is impossible to stay isolated from the world and its ever-changing landscape. So, film festivals such as EUFF are platforms for these exchanges to happen. “[EUFF]’s continued run is a testament to the enduring power of cinema to bring people together and promote cultural exchange, even in the midst of unprecedented challenges,” Piórko adds in a statement. “I hope this year’s festival will continue to inspire and enrich audiences in Singapore and beyond.”
For last year’s edition, the EUFF picked Ukraine as its featured country and a Ukrainian film was chosen for the opening. Choosing Ukraine was a sign of support that the EU is showing for the country currently in conflict and as an organisation “we continue to stay united in our support for Ukraine and its people for as long as it takes.”
Sweden is the featured country this year, and the EUFF will open with the film “Hilma”. This critically acclaimed film explores the themes of love, loss and personal growth. Its protagonist is Hilma af Klint, a revolutionary Swedish artist and feminist pioneer. The film chronicles her journey in the 1900s as a female artist trying to break into a male-dominated field. The multi-layered and nuanced biopic also explores the spiritual beliefs that influenced her art and her body of work.
“We also continue our celebration of youth by championing their ideas,” Piórko shares at EUFF 2023 media conference. “In this context, our collaboration with young Singaporean filmmakers sees the screening of their films alongside the main festival shows. We present student films from three schools: Lasalle College of the Arts Puttnam School of Film and Animation; Ngee Ann Polytechnic’s School of Film & Media Studies and Nanyang Technological University’s School of Art, Design and Media.”
Tickets for the EUFF are priced at S$15 on weekdays and weekends and are available for purchase here.
For more culture reads, click here.