The American Independent Film Festival announces a visual and musical cinematografic experience with new titles by three of the most interesting and original contemporary American directors. Vox Lux, by Brady Corbet, starring Natalie Portman and Jude Law, Mandy, directed by Panos Costmatos, starring Nicolas Cage and Andrea Riseborough and The Mountain, by Rick Alverson, starring Jeff Goldblum and Tye Sheridan, will premiere at the 3rd edition of the festival, between April 12th – 18th. Tickets will be available soon on eventbook.ro and on the Eventbook network.

The New York Times declared that „an apocalyptic star is born,” upon reviewing Natalie Portman’s performance as Celeste in Vox Lux. Vox Lux is Brady Corbet’s sophomore feature after The Childhood of a Leader which brought him awards for Best Director and Best Debut at the Venice Film Festival in 2015. Exploring the spectacle of the contemporary world, the 30-year-old director tells the fascinating story of an ordinary teenager’s rise to pop-dom following a terrorist shooting at her school, which leaves her critically injured. Guided by her well-intentioned manager (Jude Law), Celeste becomes a symbol of celebrity cult and of the power of mass media, in a film about the forces that mold us as individuals, as nations, as deities; impregnated by a score comprising of original pieces by Sia and original songs written by Scott Walker.

For Scott Walker, one of the most innovative and legendary composers of the 21st century, Vox Lux marked the second collaboration with Brady Corbet, and signaled the last score Walker composed before his death on the 22nd of March, 2019, at the age of 76, leaving behind a huge experimental pop heritage. Songs like Make it Easy on Yourself and The Sun Ain’t Gonna Shine are hits that consecrated the Walker Brothers, with Variety stating that that “their fanclub once had more members than that of the Beatles at one point.” Walker’s solo albums took his poetic style into the avant-garde musical sphere. In Vox Lux, the musical compositions are brimming with a musical force that is in synch with Celeste’s inner power and the global adulation of her popularity.

Keeping the experimental musical tone and moving through pop to rock genres, Jóhann Jóhannsson composed, together with guitar player Stephen O’Malley from “Sunn o)))”, the score of Mandy, directed by Panos Cosmatos. Jóhannsson’s music and Nicolas Cage’s character are considered by Indiewire as being “at the center of a hypnotic cinematic experience that’s equal parts deranged revenge story and abstract study of grief.”

Cosmatos’ film marked Jóhannsson’s last composition of his career, having previously finalized the music on Denis Villeneuve’s Arrival.

Mandy tells of Red Miller, who lives isolated in the wild with his wife Mandy until cult leader Jeremiah Sand (Linus Roach) ruins his life. His revenge story is built via the “black metal, menacing ambient, doom drone, and piercing orchestrations in the mode of Italian experimental composer Giacinto Scelsi,” according to Pitchfork.

The Mountain, directed by Rick Alverson debuted at the 2018 Venice Film Festival, walking away with a special mention. The film, based in the 50s, tells of Andy, a solitary teenager, who, following his father’s (Udo Kier) death, gets a job making photographs with Wallace Fiennes (Jeff Goldblum), a doctor specialized in lobotomy. Enacted by Tye Sheridan in a style reminiscent to Tom Hardy and Barry Keoghan, Andy discovers the U.S. of the 50s through the lens of his boss’ patients. Alverson’s excentric script boils until the revelatory climax of its title, in tune with its characters’ deepening into a Lynchian and Hopperesque visual plane.

Rick Alverson is known for films like The Comedy (2012), New Jerusalem (2011) and The Builder (2010).

The screening program and news about the festival and its events will be posted on filmedefestival.ro, on the American Independent Film Festival Facebook Page and on Instagram (@AmericanIndependentFilmFest). Tickets will be available soon on eventbook.ro and through the Eventbook network.

The American Independent Film Festival is organized by Asociația Cinemascop, with the support of Catena, financed by the National Center of Cinematography. Official Car: BMW. Partners: American Chamber of Commerce in Romania – AmCham Romania, Boarder’s Shop, UPS Romania, CinemaPRO, Muzeul Țăranului Român, Cinema Muzeul Țăranului, Voodoo Films, Eventbook. Main Media Partners: Pro Cinema, Radio Guerrilla. Media Parteners: Radio România Cultural, Agerpres, Zile și Nopți, Decât o Revistă, AList Magazine, Cinemagia, Newsweek, Business24, Nine O’clock, Senso TV, Glamour, The Institute, Ziarul Metropolis, Liternet.ro, Ziare.com, IQads, Smark, Films in Frame, ADFR – The Association for the Development of Romanian Films, AaRC – All about Romanian Cinema, CineFan, Cineghid, Movienews.ro, News.ro, Scena 9, Verbs Describe us. Communications Partner: PiArt Vision.

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