An Astor for Taking Risks

The program section that for the past ten years showed is the most risky and innovative areas of contemporary cinema takes a step forward. Marcelo Alderete, one of its programmers, introduces us to the new official competition of the Festival: Altered States. 




In 2009, the Mar del Plata Festival underwent several changes. One of them was the introduction of a new section called Altered States. Ten years on, a space for riskier films at the Festival has become one of its competitions. The timing is nothing more but a lovely coincidence but it’s our way of celebrating and paying tribute to the dozens of titles and directors who have formed part of this section in its brief history. The question, or unknown, in all these editions has always been the same: what makes a film eligible to be part of Altered States? ‘Avant garde’, ‘cutting edge’ and ‘experimental’ are terms that have served as guides but we’ve never been fully convinced by them even if they have helped us to understand a little of what we’re looking for. What we are sure of is that these unanswered questions very much represent the section’s spirit. That lack of certainty, the need to ask questions is what is always present in the films featured in Altered States be they fictions, documentaries or simply unclassifiable. And we also know that over the years, many titles that at one time could only have been shown in this section have started to appear in other competitions and spaces in the Festival, as though they were a benign but irritating virus. Their spirit has filtered throughout the program; it’s too late to do anything about it now. This year, Altered States and its impossible to define films are making their debut (with a timidity that belies the pride we feel in being different) in a new Festival competition. And there’s another thing we’re sure of: it’s cause for celebration. This “other cinema” deserves it.



Altered States Competition


Accession, by Tamer Hassan, Armand Yervant Tufenkian - USA - 2018 - 48’

Ada Kaleh, by Helena Wittmann - Germany - 2018 - 15’

Casanovagen / Casanova Gene, by Luise Donschen - Germany - 2018 - 67’

Chaos, by Sara Fattahi - Austria, Siria, Lebanon, Qatar - 2018 - 95’

Cittá Giardino, by Marco Piccarreda - Italy - 2018 - 55’

Classical Period, by Ted Fendt - USA - 2018 - 62’

Dead Horse Nebula, by Tarik Aktas - Turkey - 2018 - 73’

La ciudad y los patos / The Ducks and the City, by Flavia de la Fuente - Argentina - 2018 - 56’

Lembro mais dos corvos / I Remember the Crows, by Gustavo Vinagre - Brazil - 2018 - 80’

Terra Franca / Ashore, by Leonor Teles - Portugal - 2018 - 82’

Un dios local / A Local Kind of God, by Benjamín Naishtat - Argentina - 2018 - 6’

Veslemøy's Song, by Sofia Bohdanowicz - Canada - 2018 - 9’



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