Barely ten days after the final curtain for the Harare International Festival of the Arts (HIFA), the European Union in Zimbabwe, in partnership with eleven of its Member States, is proud to present yet another cultural highlight: the first ever EU Film Festival in Zimbabwe, from 16 to 20 May in Harare. The Theatre in the Park at Harare Gardens sets the scene for the screening of an acclaimed assortment of films from across Europe – and everybody is on the guest list: admission to all screenings is entirely free.
This years' selection of cinema presents film enthusiasts with vivid pictures of Europe's societies in their all-encompassing facets and cultures, a wide scope of stories that engage and pay tribute to the common traits of human nature. The diversity in narrative will take you from the sweeping streets of Rome, via excursions into Bo-livia, New York and Turkey right into the quaint confines of an apartment in Prague and a depressing hotel room in Romania in the 1980s. You will meet illustrious and loveable (or less loveable) characters, such as Eddie the Eagle, little Finn who just lost his mother, control freak Erika, and money thief David, who tries to start a new life on the Azores. Eleven screenings, spread out across five days, provide more than 1000 minutes of entertainment and food for thought.
Ambassador Philippe Van Damme, Head of the European Union Delegation to Zimbabwe, said: "We are very excited to bring this Festival to Zimbabwe, and with it some outstanding European movies that will entertain and touch the audience. Cinema, however, is not just about entertainment. It is also about the expression of identities, reflecting the state of a society, of a community. And our films are inspired by the core principles of Europe: unity in diversity; cultural, but also linguistic or even ethnic diversity; but unity of values, such as equality and democracy, as well as our social model.“
The festival kicks off on Tuesday, 16 May at 6pm with Almanya, the German award-winning tragicomedy that questions the sense of identity and belonging of Turkish immigrants and their descendants, thoughtfully and humorously reflecting on the most pressing issues in current Europe: migration and integration. Throughout the five days of the Festival, a minimum of two films will be screened every evening (all details in the attached programme and on the dedicated Facebook page @EUFilmFestivalZim).