Experimental Film Society (EFS) is a group of filmmakers dedicated to the creation of uncompromisingly personal, formally challenging filmmaking. Based in Dublin, it has succeeded in forging a new and radically alternative Irish cinema. Its defiantly independent vision, both deeply informed by film history and utterly modern, has animated over five hundred shorts and features over its eighteen-year existence. Its films adopt an exploratory approach to filmmaking and foreground mood, atmosphere, visual rhythms, and the often-startling sensory interplay of sound and image. As EFS filmmakers experiment with cinema, they allow it equally to experiment on them, creating richly experiential works that chart an uncomfortable territory that is at once uncannily familiar and utterly alien.
EFS founder and director Rouzbeh Rashidi’s Phantom Islands (2018) exists at the boundary of documentary and fiction. Directed with Rashidi’s trademark visual intensity, it follows a couple adrift and disoriented in the stunning landscape of Ireland’s islands. Yet this deliberately melodramatic romance is constantly questioned by a provocative cinematic approach that results in a hypnotic and visceral inquiry into the very possibility of documentary objectivity.
EFS Short Film Programme:
1_Universal Film (2018) By Jann Clavadetscher (4min, 2018, Ireland)
“The universal film acts upon us as a force, blending and rearranging impossible scenarios served with a dash of ants.”
2_Ghoul (2018) By Michael Higgins (8min, 2018, Ireland) *World Premiere*
“The ghosts of a man and his dog haunt a field in rural Ireland.”
3_Double Blind (2018) By Vicky Langan / Maximilian Le Cain (36min, 2018, Ireland) *World Premiere*
“Experimental filmmaking / performance duo Langan & Le Cain embrace the mood and iconography of classic Gothic literature and cinema to their raw, mysterious and often erotically charged universe. Two isolated storybook characters wander through the remains of a shattered B-movie found abandoned half-edited on a mouldy VHS tape. This darkly intimate work, suggestive of intensely personal rituals, is at once haunting and discomforting.”
4_Antler (2018) By Atoosa Pour Hosseini (15min, 2018, Ireland) *World Premiere*
“Atoosa Pour Hosseini’s work with Super-8 conjures a mysterious territory that exists between memory, subjective perception and the objective materiality of the filmed image. Antler pushes deeper into this realm, seamlessly combining archival footage of animals and reptiles in their habitats with newly filmed material of the artist and an assistant at work in a botanical garden.”