One of the highlights of any film festival is the opportunity to get up close and personal with the talent. ¡Viva! doesn’t disappoint with its assortment of Q&As from new and upcoming filmmakers. Who knows, you might even get to hear from the next Pedro Almodovar or Guillermo del Toro?
The festival opens on Friday 31st March with the stylish Valencia-set thriller Cien años de perdón (To Steal from a Thief). The script from Goya winner Jorge Guerricaechevarría promises plot twists, political intrigue and complex genre thrills as it tracks the fallout from a meticulously plotted bank heist gone awry. The special opening night screening will see director Daniel Calparsoro and actress Patricia Vico in attendance, ready to answer your questions.
There’s more political tension on offer in Pasaje de vida (Safe Passage) which screens on Sunday 2nd April with a Q&A from director Diego Corsini. This Spanish-Argentinian film looks at the lingering devastation wrought by oppressive regimes as Mario – living in contemporary Spain – discovers the radical revolutionary lives led by his parents in 1970s Argentina.
Next up is La Puerta abierta (The Open Door), a witty tale about aging prostitute Rosa, who lives miserably in the company of her cranky mother, from whom she inherited her profession, until she meets 7-year-old Lyuba. By turns darkly comic and tragic, this unusual family drama screens on Tuesday 4th April. HOME welcomes producer Álvaro Lavín and Argentinian-born director Marina Seresesky – who’s short film La Boda will also screen on the night – for a Q&A after the film.
Another dysfunctional family drama follows on Friday 7th April. Director Nely Reguera will be on hand to answer questions after the UK Premiere of her debut, María (y los demás) (María (and Everybody Else)). The film joins the titular Maria, a homemaker who has looked after her brothers and father for the past twenty years, only to find herself surplus to requirements at 35. We’re promised laughs aplenty as the film bears witness to her increasingly desperate attempts to find a new meaning to life.
Finally, there’s an economic crisis film with a difference as director Ben Sharrock and producer Irune Gurtubai arrive in Manchester for a Q&A to follow their film Pikadero on Saturday 8th April. Left unable to fly the nest (or afford a hotel) due to the financial troubles that grip Spain, a young couple are left with no option but to find alternative (read: public) locations in which to consummate their relationship. This quirky tale saw Scottish director Ben Sharrock win best Best British Feature Film at the 2016 Edinburgh International Film Festival.