To celebrate Nest’s 20th anniversary, San Sebastian Festival’s international competition for film school students, the Zinemaldia + Plus focus will screen ten short films selected from the almost 300 to have participated in the section’s 20 years of history. The works, many of which won awards at San Sebastian and other festivals, will show on Tabakalera’s shared screen in two sittings: five are programmed for October 9th and another five for November 6th.
The curators of both showings are Noemi Cuetos and Marcela Hinojosa, former students at the Elías Querejeta Zine Eskola who have selected the 10 titles to be screened based on diverse criteria. To obtain a representative display of Nest’s 20 years, proposals from schools located in different continents have been selected, based on the “free and eclectic nature which has always characterised the section” and including works which are “important from the point of view of cinematic language and content”.
Cuetos and Hinojosa, who published an article in the Festival Daily on Nest’s two decades during the 69th edition, have retrieved works by moviemakers whose later films have gone on to enjoy recognition in the international festival circuit and/or who have returned to San Sebastian to participate in other sections, while turning the focus on names which have failed to achieve that projection but in which they have “recognised innovative forms and narratives”.
This Saturday’s showing in the Tabakalera cinema will therefore include films such as Oren Gerner’s Greenland (2014), winner of the Nest Panavision Award, who competed at the Festival de Cannes with a new short, Gabriel (2018), and returned to San Sebastian to compete in New Directors with his feature debut, Africa (2019). Another similar case is that of Isabel Lamberti, who won the Nest Torino Award with Volando voy / I’ll Fly Higher (2015), while her first feature, La última primavera / Last Days of Spring (2020), carried off the Festival’s Kutxabank-New Directors Award.
Also programmed for the first showing is El enemigo / The Enemy (2015), which garnered the Short Film Corner award in Nest for Aldemar Matías, who later went on to present his first feature, La arrancada (2019), in the Panorama section of Berlin Festival; Pude ver un puma / Could See a Puma (2012), by Eduardo ‘Teddy’ Williams, who later landed a Special Mention for best first feature at the Locarno Festival with El auge del humano (2016), screened a year previously in San Sebastian’s Europe-Latin America Co-Production Forum; and O noapte în Tokoriki / A night in Tokoriki (2016), by Roxana Stroe, a work for which she bagged the Generation 14plus International Jury Special Prize at the Berlinale; the filmmaker had also previously participated in Nest with the short film Black Friday (2015).
On November 6th, the second Zinemaldia + Plus showing dedicated to Nest will include the screening of the short film Nueva vida / New Life (2015) for which Kiro Russo won the section’s Orona and Panavision awards, among others. The filmmaker has subsequently returned to San Sebastian on several occasions: to participate in the Ikusmira Berriak residencies in 2016, to present in Horizontes Latinos his first feature (Viejo Calavera / Dark Skull, 2016), winner of a Jury Special Mention at Locarno and, finally, to show in Zabaltegi-Tabakalera El gran movimiento (2021), Special Jury Prize in the Orizzonti section at Venice.
Also screening are Les oiseaux-tonnerre / Thunderbirds (2014) which had shown at the Cannes Cinéfondation prior to participating in Nest; later, its director, Léa Mysius, won the SACD Award at the Semaine de la Critique in Cannes with Ava (2017), her feature debut, before going on, the following year, to sit on the New Directors jury in San Sebastian. She is currently working on her second movie, Les cinq diables. Another of the selected short films is Find Fix Finish (2017), by Mila Zhluktenko and Sylvain Cruiziat, winner of awards at Documenta Madrid and IndieLisboa; Zhluktenko later returned to Nest with Binokl / Opera Glasses (2019) while Cruiziat took her short film The Raft (2019) to Toronto.
Another duo, this time made up of Marcos Valín and David Alonso, directed Atención al cliente / Customer Service (2007), nominated for the Best Animated Short Goya; Valín has continued to work in the field, having directed films including Tadeo Jones: El secreto del rey Midas / Tad the Lost Explorer and the Secret of King Midas (2017), while Alonso has participated as an animator in productions including Ma vie de Courgette / My Life as a Courgette, Claude Barras, Perlak, 2016) and Isle of Dogs (Wes Anderson, 2018). The fifth title in the showing will be Filipiñana (2020), the work of Rafael Manuel who, prior to participating in Nest, won the Silver Bear for Best Short Film at the Berlinale; this year Manuel returned to Nest, but as producer of the short film after a room (Naomi Pacifique, 2021), winner of the Silver Pardino at Locarno.
Framed within the concept of Z365, the Festival all year round, the Zinemaldia + Plus focus was launched twelve months ago. Since then, it has concentrated on programmes such as Ikusmira Berriak, on the earlier work of filmmakers to have visited San Sebastian (First Steps) and on cartes blanches to important industry personalities, among other proposals.
Oren comes to his parents' house to pack his belongings before moving with his girlfriend. During this day, out of seemingly simple interactions, the family dynamics reveals itself in a chronicle of separation.
In a fumigation centre in Havana, Mayelín has the thankless task of doling out fines to citizens who have the dengue mosquito in their homes. With a demanding boss and conflictive workers, Mayelín will have to impose her authority to gain respect.
The accident leads a group of young boys from the high roofs of their neighborhood, passing through its destruction, to the deepest of the earth.
Two young brothers wander around in a big empty world without a clear destination. As society rages on around them at only a few yards distance, it couldn't seem farther away. Together they try to escape reality, but how do you relate to an undeniable world that you don't seem to be part of?
In an improvised night club called Tokoriki the whole village celebrates Geanina's 18th birthday. Her boyfriend and Alin will give her a most surprising gift, one that nobody will ever forget.
Antonin and Leonor are hunting the lark. He is as submissive as his sister is voracious. One day, a dog attacks them.
Mysteries, worries and dreams of a new life.
"In Afghanistan, I saw a couple making love on a roof". We know very little of the day-to-day work of the pilots carrying out "targeted assassinations" with military drones. Three Americans agreed to testify in voiceover about their experience, which is paradoxically one of intimacy and cruelty, over aerial images that they could have filmed themselves, to Find Fix Finish.
In a cold and hostile future, a little old lady is forced to break the rules in order to get some food for her loyal little dog. Some of the things standing in the way of the elderly woman´s loutish deed include metalic security guards, foulmounthed and compulsive shoppers, and paranoid security measures.
The self-contained cosmos of the golf course reflect societal structures. Although new tee girl Isabel still has to learn the rules, she's already looking for loopholes to subvert the system.