The Singapore International Festival of Arts (SIFA) unveils the full lineup for Singular Screens, now available both on-demand and at Oldham Theatre as part of SIFA v2.020 from 4 September 2020. Curated by the Asian Film Archive (AFA), Singular Screens celebrates diverse and independent visions, now in its third annual edition since 2018.
“Singular Screens has been a significant part of SIFA for the past three years, showcasing some of the best and boldest voices in the world of film. We’re proud to present seven powerful films this year as part of SIFA v2.020. Whilst each film in the programme is unique, they are united by their profound explorations of life, death and rebirth. Often meditative, they give us pause to ponder our own existence in the turbulent world of now. In addition, they each push the boundaries of filmmaking while showcasing the cinematic styles of each director,” said Festival Director Gaurav Kripalani.
All seven films for Singular Screens will be screened at Oldham Theatre at the National Archives of Singapore, with social distancing measures in place. These include mandatory temperature taking, SafeEntry log-in and mask wearing, as well as a maximum capacity of 33 for each screening and with groups up to three allowed to sit together. Alternatively, audiences can enjoy three of the films at home through video-on-demand via SISTIC Live Stream.
Highlights include opening film About Endlessness, by acclaimed Swedish film director Roy Andersson. Andersson brings audiences on a deep exploration on existence and human life through a series of stunningly picturesque and uninterrupted long-shot vignettes. The effect – a beautiful yet humourously dark satire exposing the predicaments of its characters, inviting audiences to reflect on their own lives. This film was awarded ‘Best Director’ at the Venice Film Festival 2019.
Last and First Men directed by mercurial Icelandic composer and filmmaker Jóhann Jóhannsson, straddles both science fiction and documentary. Inspired by the 1930 novel by Olaf Stapledon, this minimalist yet monumental film brings audiences two billion years into the future. Narrated by Tilda Swinton and with music composed by Jóhannsson himself, the film represents his last and most personal work – an allegory of remembrance, ideals and the death of utopia.
Paris-based Spanish filmmaker and visual artist Carlos Casas presents Cemetery, an immersive journey which follows an elephant, a mahout and the poachers in their pursuit through the Sri Lankan jungle toward the mythical elephants’ graveyard. This deeply sensorial film which combines 10 years of stunning field recordings and arresting soundscape, opens up questions about life cycles and memory, colonialism and extinction, conservation and the environment and interspecies relationships.
Singular Screens will be made available through video-on-demand via SISTIC Live Stream or theatrical screening at Oldham Theatre at the National Archives of Singapore. All theatrical screenings will follow social distancing measures as outlined here. Tickets and full line-up available here.
The Singapore International Festival of the Arts 2020 was originally slated to run from 15th to 31st May 2020, but was cancelled due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. It will return in 2021.