2017 Fall edition


Showcasing innovative independent cinema from around the world by up-and-coming artists.

In association with Venice Film Week.

Aiming to inspire, motivate and award new talent.

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The Lisbon International Film Festival is a quarterly online film festival meant to showcase innovative independent cinema from around the world by up-and-coming artists.

The festival hopes to be the voice and representation for films with a unique voice and message, regardless of how low the budget might be.

Aiming to inspire, motivate and award new talent.


FALL 2017

Best Narrative Short Film
Lisbon Bull Award
Elene (Turkey) by Sezen Kayhan

16-year-old Elene is a Georgian illegal immigrant who works at a tea plantation in Turkey. Feeling threatened by various encounters, she tries to be invisible in this foreign land. But it is not as easy as she thinks.

Best Narrative Feature Film
LOVERS (Italy) by Matteo Vicino

Lovers symmetrically approaches four stories where the five main characters, interpreting different roles, are all connected in a spiral driven by the reasons of love. Within this concentric and endless circle of lives ‘Lovers’ takes shape and creates a movie where love, comedy, doubt, suspicion and murder are constantly represented throughout the story.

Best Documentary Feature Film
When I Stutter (United States) by John Gomez

The primary goal of “When I Stutter” is to help bring greater understanding and empathy to a group of people that contend with an often misunderstood communication disorder. Over the course of 4.5 years, 19 people shared stories about how stuttering has impacted their lives. These stories run the gamut of human emotions… Some stories are dark, some are funny and others are triumphant! Interspersed throughout the documentary, are “educational vignettes” that help elucidate some of the mysteries and questions that surround stuttering. In addition to interviews and vignettes, a young man is followed on his journey through stuttering therapy. The relationship that he forms with the speech pathologist and the progress that he makes is truly heartwarming. “When I Stutter” is a documentary that reveals the humanity that can be found when we explore an often mysterious malady.

Best Documentary Short Film
Clean Hands (United States) by Lauren DeFilippo

The Daytona Beach Drive-In Christian Church has been offering services from the convenience of your car since 1953. The film structures itself around one Sunday morning service in the peak of the Florida summer heat. Parishioners are greeted with wine and communion packaged in Dixie cups as they enter the outdoor church and settle on a parking space. The camera roves over the vast lawn of worshippers as they find refuge, tuning into 88.5FM and watching Pastor Bob Kemp-Baird as he delivers his sermon from a balcony of an A-frame house. In a congregation where a honk is understood as an amen, this particular Sunday the pastor’s sermon centers on the threat technology poses to our spiritual lives and the divide it creates with our relationship to the external world.

Best Animated Short Film
Shine (Germany) by Johannes Flick

'Shine' brings a fresh perspective to the ageold story of men vying for the love of a beautiful woman, however in this instance, the men are two furry creatures who battle with the power of selfillumination. They are on fire... until one gets burned!  

Best Experimental Film
Song Sotto Voce (France) by Pierre Bessette

A young woman wanders the deserted expanses with a rolling suitcase. A father appears on her skin like a tattoo. A journey between two distresses where poetry is the only salvation.

Best Underground Film
Dream Throat (United States) by Michael Arcos

You are in a room that has hosted numerous tenants. This room collects aggression, love, lust, and pain. The tenants change, while the taxidermy and rose wallpaper remain as viewers like yourself. You are invited to an in-depth and darkened view of what these roses' thorns have collected.

Best Portuguese Cinema Now
The Night is Calling (Portugal) by Francisco Morais, Miguel Pinto

Luís is a humble wool seller in the city of Vila Franca de Xira. He follows his daily routine, until this night.

Official Selection - Narrative Feature Film
Andrés Reads And Writes (Chile) by Daniel Peralta

Andrés Centeno, a young factory worker, spends his nights working long night shifts, leaving him in a continuous state of drowsiness. Andrés has lost its way and forgotten his teenage dreams. Running into a piece of his own life story -stumbling with an encapsulated moment of time filled with illusions- he will realize that although he hasn’t made the right choices, it’s still not to late to make amends; accompanied by a new friendship that will encourage him to move forward.

Official Selection - Narrative Feature Film
Autumn Memories (Czech Republic) by Ali Fakhr Mousavi

Sculptor Alexander is taking wife’s death hard. The sister of dead woman Natasha helps him at home and has unrequited love with him. When Alexander employed wounded soldier, the musician Tolya, he became not so lonely. But the men’s friendship destroyed after appearance of Iraqi refugee Ima and Natasha seized by jealousy. Ima is going to be operated on restoration of sight and the result of such operation will change the destiny of drama characters in full.

Official Selection - Documentary Feature Film
What a Circus! (Hungary) by Glória Halász

Balancing between reality and fiction, 'What a Circus!' is an intimate documentary about Recirquel, a contemporary circus company based in Budapest, Hungary. The film's crew followed the company for years, including during their latest show's rehearsals. Between the sweats and tears, we see the performers' dreams and fears come to life in spectacular scenes of stunts made in suburban settings.

Official Selection - Documentary Feature Film
The Berkel (Germany) by Anna Schlottbohm, Willelm Kootstra

The Berkel quietly whispering carves its way from the Baumberge to the german-dutch border. For their documentary the filmmaker Anna Schlottbohm and the journalist Willem Kootstra travel along the river from spring to the estuary. In encounters with residents and in short essay slots the filmmakers dwell on the ambience of the border and track down their roots. They explore terms of the word „homeland“ of different generations following the poetry of a forgotten status of emotion: to flow. Kopje onder!

Official Selection - Documentary Feature Film
Once Upon a Time in the Wild (United Kingdom) by Craig Ford, Tim Clark

"No House. No Job. No Clue... Meet Burgess" Fed up with modern day life; Simon Burgess and Susan Moran quit their jobs, sell all of their possessions and move into the woods.

Official Selection - Documentary Feature Film
My Human Self (Greece) by Lukas Agelastos, Spiridoula Gouskou

The middle-aged Kostas is struggling with unemployment. With his stubbornness and selfishness driving him, he creates a social kitchen with which he cooks on the streets of Greece every day, trying to come closer to people in need. When his social venture becomes famous, his ego and stubbornness bring him close to failure and in conflict with his life partner and his own self.

Official Selection - Narrative Short Film
Generation Mars (Norway) by Alexander Armas

Turpin Astrid is one of the winners of Generation Mars: A reality show sending the first humans to Mars, never to return. Everything is set for her to leave, except one thing. Astrid must say goodbye to everything she loves.

Official Selection - Narrative Short Film
Cowboy Of Mount Laurier (Canada) by Gabriel Vilandre

Amélie found a mysterious man in a laundromat.

Official Selection - Narrative Short Film
My Grandpa Rode a Harley (Israel) by Maayan Blech

After 38 years in the same house, Grandpa Rudi is on the move. A story that begins with a missing pill in the director's grandparents livingroom, expose the tesions, hope and despair of the old age.

Official Selection - Narrative Short Film
Concrete (Israel) by Dor Fadlon

A family tries to stay together despite hopelessly falling apart.

Official Selection - Narrative Short Film
Aqua Mamas (Denmark) by Zara Zerny

A hybrid short film about motherhood based on real experiences - with one actress and a group of real mothers playing themselves within a fictive storyline. Pernille is pregnant and filled with joyful expectations to her new life as a mother. But when her son arrives her world is turned upside-down. The idyllic dream of motherhood is shattered and replaced by the reality of a crying baby. She seeks support and comfort from a group of far more experienced mothers, whom tries to help Pernille the best way they can. But how can one become a great mother?

Official Selection - Narrative Short Film
In White (Lebanon) by Dania Ddeir

Lara, a 24 year old Lebanese artist living in NYC, returns home to Beirut for her father’s funeral. Her elegant strong-willed mother, Rima, pushes for Lara to behave in accordance with the social mores of Beirut and the traditional ways of grieving. Lara, in mourning and in need of her family, yields. Her Jewish Canadian fiancee, Noah, shows up to support her - but is surprised to discover that Lara has never told her family about him. Lara can’t bring herself to risk losing her family but eventually must find a way to be true to herself.

Official Selection - Narrative Short Film
French (France) by Josza Anjembe

At seventeen, Seyna, a teenager from Cameroon is passionate about France history, the country where she was born and she is deeply in love. Her diploma in hand, and approaching her majority, Seyna only desire one thing: to acquire French nationality. But her father Amidou is fiercely opposed to it.

Official Selection - Documentary Short Film
Everyday Madness (Netherlands) by Jasper C. Kars, Gerrit Doelman

Twenty-something Ivor suffers from bipolar depressions and has psychotic episodes. In the Dutch documentary Everyday Madness Ivor looks for positive recovery in a world where depression and psychoses are commonplace. He fights his own everyday battle against his mental diseases, and against the current stigma. But what happens if his illness continues?

Official Selection - Documentary Short Film
100 Women I Know (United Kingdom) by Phoebe Montague

An unapologetic short documentary telling honest stories of rape from 100 young women I know.

Official Selection - Documentary Short Film
Sára and Emma and images of growing up (Slovakia) by Lena Kušnieriková

Film about teenage sisters – twins who are looking for they way of life. Everything is for the first time and for the grown- up´s banal, but for the girls decisive.

Official Selection - Documentary Short Film
Roots (Israel) by Rotem Zisman-Cohen

When we look at a person walking down the street, we only see a human being. Just like looking at a tree, the roots are not visible. Eighteen months ago, with a growing desire to become a mother, I looked deep inside myself and I asked: Who am I? What are my roots?

Official Selection - Documentary Short Film
Eyes of Mine (United Kingdom) by Simon Nunn

The film is an esoteric portrait of John 'Modge' Chancellor. An ex-tv star and red coat, living in the back waters of the Suffolk countryside waiting for his time to shine once more.

Official Selection - Experimental Film
Point of View (Germany) by Otwin Karl Biernat

Real-Time and uncut. Karl Krämer is a middle class retired person who has been living with his wife Maria in the countryside of northern Germany for many years. Maria formally was a well-known singer, who, in the peak of her career, fell seriously ill and then unluckily lost her voice. From this moment she has been in a desolate state unable to communicate and forced to battle her inner demons... But for her husband she has remained the glamorous person of former times. He denies to realise the fact, that the success of his wife and the love of their partnership has vanished by the time. Besides life has changed to increasing isolation... Together, Karl and Maria have three grown up children, who are quite different in their character and their way of living. Each of them try to get over their difficult childhood in their own way and through the course of the years they have grown distant to their parents and perhaps to each other. Yet, on the 65th birthday of their father, they all come back to visit him unexpectedly. This family gathering is of course supposed to be a simple birthday reunion, but then it transforms into a series of disturbing, poignant and sometimes comic-like events. The emerging problems of this situation expose the family drowning into unresolved conflicts of the past. Each family member tries to find a solution in different interactions - with a deep desire to heal each other. How can they find the way back to sanity when the own point of view differs from each other in so many aspects...?

Official Selection - Experimental Film
Hecayodo (United Kingdom) by Gabriel Montagné Láscaris-Comneno, Mauricio Pauly

A song of textures, a poem of urgencies. And lots of, let's say, words. Borges said that when he went blind everything for him turned yellow, not black.

Official Selection - Experimental Film
Sil (United Kingdom) by Oliver Endersby

'Sil' follows a solitary urban drifter whose aimless night walks are led into the surreal when a mysterious light causes him to obsess over an idyllic landscape. The film blends elements of psychogeography and science fiction to explore the relationship between two contrasting landscapes. Based on H.G. Well's short story 'The Door in the Wall'.

Official Selection - Experimental Film
Behind The Brian Curtain (United States) by Gabrielle Lenhard

Behind The Brian Curtain features performances by Real Brian and Super-Brian to explore our social media presence in contrast to self perception.

Official Selection - Underground Film
People At Night (United Kingdom) by Joshua Magor

Unable to bear the world around him, John descends into the London night in an attempt to prove to himself that he still has some kind of agency over his life. In doing so he is forced to confront his potential to cause harm to those around him.

Official Selection - Underground Film
My Heart Is an Octopus or My Father on the Shore of Black Sea (Bulgaria) by Neno Belchev

The try of a man, who feels immigrant to his own homeland to make a documentary about his father.

Official Selection - Animated Short Film
Not The Same River. Not The Same Man. (United Kingdom) by Michelle Brand

A fisherman takes his boat out on the river. While he and his surroundings are in a constant flow, the viewer observes the passing of time, watching everything go through movement and change. In an ever-flowing cycle, things come to be, change, evolve, and pass on....

Official Selection - Animated Short Film
Higher Intelligence (Ecuador) by Roberto Sempértegui, Fabio Ferro

Somewhere in the Ecuadorian highlands, a martian - a very unlucky one- practices to make a crop circle. His worst nightmare will be a stubborn cow who will not let him finish what he started.

Official Selection - Animated Short Film
Salary Serf (United States) by Baya Bae

“Salary Serf” is a short, 3D motion graphics animation about a chameleon named BAYA who works at a huge pharmaceutical company called “PAIN”. What looks like a model corporation on the outside, is pretty much an employee's’ torture chamber on the inside. Here the more misery you can withstand, the more money and honor you’ll receive. Caught in this degrading system, BAYA eventually makes his exit into a sometimes mystical, moral, psychological landscape before he reaches the end of his anti-hero’s journey.

Official Selection - Portuguese Cinema Now
Bastien (Portugal) by Welket Bungué

Bastien’ is the story of a 24 year-old, who grew up in an institution for six years and returned home of their host family. He lives with his younger brother Zezito and his adoptive grandmother, Dona Angustina. Living on the razor's edge, Bastien depends on an ungrateful and degenerate world, dreams crumble and lives that are saved have a sterile neighborhood as background to this story played out between two brothers and barren destination that crosses their paths.

Official Selection - Portuguese Cinema Now
Púrpura (Portugal) by Pedro Antunes

Metamorphosis happens in two bodies and leaves fragments of Stá and Nix at the conscious vortex of Lisbon. Between body, sex and gender.

Official Selection - Portuguese Cinema Now
Peel (Portugal) by Natália Azevedo Andrade

It's early morning and we get to know how lost are the thoughts of this girl, through a metaphorical synesthesia that leads us into an unfulfilled love story.

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