Movies to look out for at the 19th Chennai International Film Festival

The 19th Chennai International Film Festival is here, promising a treat of 121 films from 53 countries

December 29, 2021 05:18 pm | Updated December 30, 2021 11:22 am IST - Chennai

“The feeling of watching a film on the large screen is something else,” says E Thangaraj, general secretary, Indo Film Appreciation Foundation. “Sound effects and visuals can be experienced to the fullest only in a cinema theatre,” he points out. The Foundation’s 19th Chennai International Film Festival seeks to offer cinema lovers exactly this.

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With the last couple of years seeing more films releasing on OTT platforms than on the big screen, Thangaraj hopes that the festival will provide fodder for film buffs. “This is an opportunity for them to watch our pick of award-winning films from around the world,” he adds.

This year, the festival will feature 121 films from 53 countries and is spread across two venues — PVR Multiplex (formerly Sathyam Cinemas) and SDC Anna Cinemas. Thangaraj highlights films such as Three Floors by Nanni Moretti, Vortex by Gaspar Noé, A Hero , and When Pomegranates Howl , both of which were entries at the 94th Academy Awards.

Nine Iranian, five Korean, six French, and four Malayalam films are being screened. This includes winners at Cannes, Berlin International, Iran’s Fajr, Venice, San Sebastian International, and Tokyo International Film Festivals. There will also be a special screening of Singeetam Srinivasa Rao’s Dikkatra Parvathi, apart from 11 Tamil films that were selected by the Foundation’ preview committee. These include Sivaranjiniyum Innum Sila Pengalum , Maara , Karnan , Thaen , and Seththumaan .

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Three Floors (Cannes Festival 2021, Palme d’Or nominee): The 2021 Italian drama revolves around three families that live on different floors of an apartment building in a middle-class neighbourhood.

Vortex (San Sebastián International Film Festival 2021 winner): The French drama details the final days of an elderly couple who has dementia.

A Hero (Iranian entry for the Best International Feature Film at the 94th Academy Awards): The film, written and directed by Asghar Farhadi, is about Rahim, who is in prison for debt he is unable to pay back. On a two-day leave from his sentence, he tries to convince his creditor to withdraw the complaint against him.

When Pomegranates Howl (Australian entry for the Best International Feature Film at the 94th Academy Awards): The 2020 Afghan-Australian drama film written and directed by a Iranian director Granaz Moussavi is about a nine-year-old boy living on the streets of Kabul, who dreams of becoming a movie star.

The film festival is on from today till January 6. To register, visit or Registration can also be done offline at SDC Anna Cinemas, 21, Anna Salai, Triplicane.

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