The Austrian Cultural Forum London in cooperation with the Austrian Film Institute and the Austrian Films presents the second edition of watchAUT, a dedicated film festival featuring the best new and recent films to emerge from Austria.
Running 23 – 26 March at Ciné Lumière, it provides a glimpse of the world as perceived by the current generation of Austrian filmmakers.
With a focus on today’s hottest issues making waves in front of and behind the camera, watchAUT is both a timely snapshot and an intriguing reflection of the current status quo. It’s also an opportunity to preview anticipated new films by Austrian directors, as well as see on the big screen acclaimed titles that haven’t had a UK theatrical release.
OPENING FILM: THE FOX
Thursday 23 March, 7.45pm
The true story of Franz Streitberger, the director’s great-grandfather, a motorcycle courier for the Austrian Army. At the beginning of the Second World War, this introverted young soldier comes across a wounded fox cub that he looks after and takes to occupied France with him – and through this unique friendship, his own past as an outcast farmers son slowly catches up with him. Including Q&A with director Adrian Goiginger and lead actor Simon Morzé.
UK Premiere (dir: Adrian Goigingers, Germany/Austria, 2022). BOOK
Friday 24 March, 6.30pm
Winner of the Venice Horizons Award for Best Director, as well as Best Actress for Vera Gemma, this Italian language drama co-stars Asia Argento and tells the story of Vera: a woman who lives in the shadow of her famous father and is tired of her superficial life amidst Rome’s high society. When she injures an 8-year-old child in a traffic accident, she forms an intense relationship with the boy and his father.
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EISMAYER + Q&A
Friday 24 March, 8.30pm
London Premiere. Vice Lieutenant Eismayer is the most feared trainer and model macho in the Austrian Army, despite being a gay man in secret. When he falls in love with a young openly gay soldier, his world gets turned upside down. Based on real events, this LGBTQ+ feature championed at numerous film festivals, including Venice where it won the Grand Prize at Venice International Critics Week and was nominated for the Queer Lion.
(dir: David Wagner, Austria, 2022). BOOK THIS FILM
I AM THE TIGRESS
Saturday 25 March, 6.20pm
A favourite at BFI Flare, this intimate documentary portrays Tischa Thomas aka The Tigress – a 47-year-old mother and competitive bodybuilder whose physical strength and prowess contrasts with her beneath-the-surface vulnerability. Including Q&A with directors and Tischa Thomas.
(dir: Philipp Fussenegger, Dino Osmanoviç, Austria/United States/Germany, 2021).
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MATTER OUT OF PLACE
Saturday 25 March, 8.30pm
Winner of the WWF Green Leopard at Locarno International Film Festival, this environmental documentary captures the dispersion of garbage – observing the sisyphos-like work of garbage collectors and waste managers around the world.
(dir: Nikolaus Geyrhalter, Austria, 2022). BOOK THIS FILM
CLOSING FILM: Woman in the Moon
Sunday 26 March, 1.30pm
An early film by visionary Austrian director Fritz Lang, Woman in the Moon follows a band of space pioneers as they attempt mankind’s first lunar voyage. This silent sci-fi epic is often considered as the first ‘serious’ science fiction film due to its realistic depiction of space travel. When the film premiered 94 years ago, it introduced cinema audiences to many elements that we now readily associate with space travel, including the idea of a countdown before the launch of a rocket. Presented in its rarely seen full-length version with live piano accompaniment, transporting the audience back to the era of silent film.
(dir: Fritz Lang, Germany, 1929). BOOK THIS FILM
Sunday 26 March, 4.45pm
British actor George Blagden (Versailles, Vikings) stars alongside Austrian actress Julia Franz Richter and Ukrainian-born actor Mark Ivanir (The Human Resources Manager, The Good Shepherd) in this sci-fi drama. When Earth suddenly disappears in a toxic brown fog and all contacts are broken, the crew of a space station must decide whether to stay safe in space or risk their lives to get home and search for survivors.
(dir: Leni Lauritsch, Austria, 2022). BOOK THIS FILM
Ticket booking and further information - Ciné Lumière