This is about a poll in my bilingual blog at http://celinejulie.blogspot.com
POLL 66: HUBERT BALS FUND
My poll 66 is inspired by three films I just saw in the Bangkok International Film Festival – AURORA, INDEPENDENCIA, and INLAND. These three films have one thing in common. All of them are supported by Hubert Bals Fund, or at least they are involved in one way or another with Hubert Bals Fund.
During the past ten years, whenever I see the words “Hubert Bals Fund” in the credit of any films, I think of it as a stamp of approval or a guarantee that the film being shown is highly likely to be a great film. I think I knew about Hubert Bals Fund the first time when I read about MYSTERIOUS OBJECT OF NOON (2000). So my first impression of this Fund is that this fund had to be great, or else it wouldn’t have given some money to Apichatpong at that time. My first impression turns out to be right. Whoever is behind Hubert Bals Fund is truly intelligent and knows about the real potential of the filmmakers it supports. The films supported by this fund rarely disappoint me. Maybe my least favorite film supported by this fund is ABOUNA (2002, Mahamet-Saleh Haroun, Chad, B+), which is not a bad film at all.
I tried to make a list of my favorite films which are supported by Hubert Bals Fund, so I searched for the information about this Fund from the internet. There seems to be no complete database about this Fund. The information about this Fund at the website of the Rotterdam International Film Festival seems to include only films supported during the past five years, not during the past ten years as I hope. So I make the list below by using information from various websites, all of which I’m not sure are reliable or not. I apologize in advance if my list contains some mistakes.
Apart from “Hubert Bals Fund”, another logo/word which is like a stamp of approval or a guarantee of the greatness of the films being shown is “ZDF/ARTE”. I think I have never been disappointed by any films supported by ZDF or ARTE. When I see the word ZDF or ARTE on the screen, I’m 90% sure that the film being shown will get A+ from me. This is different from the word PATHE or CANAL+. When I see the word PATHE or CANAL+ in the opening credit of a film, I’m not sure at all that the film being shown will get A+ from me.
The list of films supported by ZDF/ARTE:
THESE GREAT FILMS ARE SUPPORTED BY HUBERT BALS FUND. WHICH ONES DO YOU LIKE?
1.ALICE’S HOUSE (2007, Chico Teixeira, Brazil)
2.AURORA (2009, Adolfo B. Alix, Jr., Philippines)
3.DIVINE INTERVENTION (2002, Elia Suleiman, Palestine)
4.DREAMS (2005, Mohamed Al Daradji, Iraq)
5.FEAST OF VILLAINS (2008, Pan Jianlin, China)
6.FORGIVENESS (2004, Ian Gabriel, South Africa)
7.FOTOGRAF (2001, Kazim Oz, Turkey)
8.4 (2005, Ilya Khrjanovsky, Russia)
9.JAPON (2002, Carlos Reygadas, Mexico)
10.INDEPENDENCIA (2009, Raya Martin, Philippines)
You can read Graiwoot’s review of INDEPENDENCIA in Bioscope magazine, October 2009.
Alexis Tioseco’s review:
11.INLAND (2008, Tariq Teguia, Algeria)
12.MAGIC GLOVES (2003, Martin Rejtman, Argentina)
13.MYSTERIOUS OBJECT AT NOON (2000, Apichatpong Weerasethakul, Thailand)
14.PLATFORM (2000, Jia Zhangke, China)
15.LA RABIA (2008, Albertina Carri, Argentina)
16.THE SKY, THE EARTH, AND THE RAIN (2008, Jose Luis Torres Leiva,
17.SUMMER BOOK (2008, Seyfi Teoman, Turkey)
18.THIRST (2003, Tawfik Abu Wael, Israel)
19.VIOLET PERFUME – NOBODY HEARS YOU (2000, Marysa Sistach, Mexico)
20.WONDERFUL TOWN (2008, Aditya Assarat, Thailand)
You can select multiple answers.
–I exclude some films from the list because:
1.They are famous: CLIMATES, 4 MONTHS 3 WEEKS AND 2 DAYS, LAST LIFE IN THE UNIVERSE.
2.They were included in other polls of mine: HEREMIAS, A SHORT FILM ABOUT THE INDIO NACIONAL, DANCING BELL, LOVE CONQUERS ALL, FLOWER IN THE POCKET, BEFORE WE FALL IN LOVE AGAIN, YEARS WHEN I WAS A CHILD OUTSIDE, BLIND PIG WHO WANTS TO FLY.
3.I like them, but not as much as the films in my poll: SILENCES OF THE PALACE (1994, Moufida Tlatli, Tunisia), BEIJING BASTARDS (1993, Zhang Yuan, China).
–This is the trailer of AT THE VERY BOTTOM OF EVERYTHING (2010, Paul Agusta, Indonesia), which is supported by Hubert Bals Fund. Thanks to Filmsick for telling us about this trailer.
–Are there any other studios, production houses, or film funds which you love?
–If you are a billionaire, which filmmakers would you like to give money to? Or what kind of films would you like to produce? I’d like to give money to:
1. A horror film which is ten-hour long and inspired partly by Wes Craven, Greg McLean, Permpol Choei-aroon, and Lav Diaz.
2. A ten-hour long film directed by Sasithorn Ariyavicha
3.A ten-hour long film directed by Fred Kelemen
4.A ten-hour long film about the history of Thailand, directed by Prap Boonpan
5.A film loosely inspired by the Thai novel PLOENG PAI, written by Nuntana Weerachon. The story is about a woman who kills many people. I wish this film should have
5.1 The raw feeling of BAISE-MOI
5.2 The dark feeling of IN MY SKIN
5.3 The hurt feeling of CRY IN SILENCE
5.4 The visual of SOMBRE
5.5 The sadness of BREMEN FREEDOM