3rd Mexico City International Contemporary Film Festival
México, February 21 - March 6 2006
It is now Mexico ‘s turn to create a film festival of international reach, like Buenos Aires ‘ BAFICI has satisfactorily accomplished, or, to a much lesser extent, the Mar del Plata Film Festival. Mexico lacked such a space, since the traditional Mexican Film Week of Guadalajara (which has opened itself up to Spanish and Portuguese-speaking films) has not had the same wide-embracing goals as the Mexico City International Contemporary Film Festival (FICCO).
FICCO’s third version is the proof of a worthy effort to gather an important part of the best films from all around. Of course it cannot expect to have them as premières, so several of the films in competition had already been screened in festivals abroad. But it wouldn’t make any sense to pretend to have exclusivity in Latin American countries; on the contrary, the novelty is to be able to see films that mostly do not have any chance of opening in the commercial circuit, and that have been endorsed by critical acclaim in their country of origin or by festival awards, or by the simple fact of having participated in prestigious film events. This is what justifies the existence of FICCO, just like with Argentina ‘s BAFICI: being, in a certain way, a “festival of festivals” within the region, and offering the most varied panorama as possible of the films that are being made here and there nowadays.
The average level of what was screened was more that adequate: both the official documentary section (where the FIPRESCI jury gave its award) and in the fiction program, and also the retrospectives dedicated to Pier Paolo Pasolini and Glauber Rocha, the tribute to Claire Denis, the South Korean program, among other equally attractive selections. There are, of course, certain adjustments and corrections to make in some aspects of the organization. Some of the problems are due to the huge dimensions of a city like Mexico D.F., and the young and enthusiastic festival team is well aware of them. Nevertheless, it is an event that is just starting, and if it continues through the road it has taken it could become for the North, like Argentina ‘s BAFICI has in the South of the continent, another major regional pole for the more creatively searching and independent cinema being produced throughout the world.(Isaac León Frías)