Autumn is here once again. The insanely hot weather we both loved and hated mere weeks ago is transforming pleasantly into still warm days and cooler evenings with promises of two of our favorite things lurking just around the corner – sweater weather and The Zurich Film Festival!
This is the 14th Zurich Film Festival and as is the case each year, the line-up of films, filmmakers, events and parties does not disappoint.
Each year the festival brings stars from around the world to its green carpet and each year, we hope one of our boyfriends will be invited. (We’re still holding out for Jason Statham, Clive Owen, Jeff Bridges and Colin Firth, and that’s just the over 40s . . .)
Well, this year it’s finally happening …the perfectly delicious and über talented Viggo Mortensen (swoon) will be in attendance with the opening night film, Green Book. Set in the 60s, it’s the story of a working-class Italian-American bouncer who becomes the driver of an African-American pianist on a tour of venues in the American south.
We cannot wait to see him. It. Both.
There are only three screenings, so get your tickets before they’re gone. And if you run into Viggo on the streets of Zurich, please tell him we’re waiting under the Picasso at the Kronenhalle Bar for him.
We got an inside scoop from an old friend and programmer at the festival and have heard that these films are not to be missed: Cold November, Firecrackers, Minding the Gap, The Truth About Killer Robots and An Elephant Sitting Still.
The details for these and all the ZFF films can be found on the website, ZFF.com, in both English and German, or you can pick up a program in town – they’re everywhere.
The highly anticipated and well-reviewed A Star is Born will be shown just twice on October 1st and 2nd. We are dying to see Lady Gaga and Bradley Cooper light the screen on fire in this remake of the classic.
Swiss filmmaker and all-around fabulous guy, Christian Frei, will present his stunning festival hit Genesis 2.0 on October 4th and 7th. We are terribly excited to check out this film about the discovery of intact Woolly Mammoths in Siberia and all the political and scientific ramifications that go along with it.
Don’t forget the kids! With films from all over, many with live German translation as well as English subtitles, you and your small ones can enjoy films you’d not otherwise have a chance to see while experiencing the magic of seeing a film in the cinema – start ‘em young, we say! The recommended ages are listed on the website.
The lifetime achievement award will be given to Donald Sutherland, whose career spans 50 years. He’s been in some of our favorite films, a few of which will be screening at the festival – Ordinary People (starring one boyfriend, Timothy Hutton, and directed by another, Robert Redford), and The Dirty Dozen. Always a treat to see such classics on the big screen.
The festival center on Sechseläutenplatz is the place to see and be seen –grab a drink and a table outside in the sun for some fabulous people watching. You can buy your tickets and memorabilia, grab a pre or post film snack, then gather along the green carpet to catch a glimpse of one of your favorite stars! Dame Judi Dench! Johnny Depp! VIGGO!
Oh, and the parties … Two we’re looking forward to are Silverscreen Night on Friday the 28th at Globus am Bellevue and then, if you really want to get gussied up and be a part of the action, treat yourself to tickets for the Exclusive Pre-Award Night Dinner, which includes entry to the ZFF after party at the Opera House. We can assure you – it’ll be a night (and likely morning) you won’t soon forget.
We may take it a bit easy on the partying this year. We’re going to try to break our record for most movies seen at ZFF. Think you can beat us? Why not join us? We’ll be the girls in the tent with a glass of Champagne in one hand, the ZFF program all dog eared and marked up in the other, and wearing our trainers so we can run after Viggo…
Zurich Film Festival Event Details
Dates: 27 September – 7 October
Locations: Kino Corso | Arthouse Le Paris | Arthouse Piccadilly | Arena SihlCity | Filmpodium | Riffraff Kino | Cosmos
Cost: Starting at CHF 16 with various options available including Child Discounts and Festival Passes
On Site Tickets:
– From September 17: all Starticket points of sale | ticket booth at Paradeplatz (12:00 – 19:00) | Cinema Corso (16:00 – 21:00)
– From September 24 in addition: ticket booth at Sihlcity (11:00 – 20:00) | Riffraff Kino/Bar/Bistro (16:00 – 21:00)
– From September 27 in addition: Festival Centre at Sechseläutenplatz (11:00 – 21:30, on first festival day from 12:00 pm) | Cinemas: Arthouse Le Paris, Corso, Filmpodium (open daily 30 min. before first screening starts)
Film Program: ZFF Website
Contributed by: Zuri Girl Kristen Vermilyea, an American actor, filmmaker, writer and artist who has lived in Zurich for nearly 6 years. She hosts the Zurich Film Festival TV show and is a social media and film consultant. When not watching and writing about film, she keeps busy attempting to learn to play new instruments as her four year old daughter has insisted they start a band.
Images courtesy of ZFF. Credits including (Photo by Andreas Rentz/Getty Images)