The Invisible City [Kakuma], directed by Lieven Corthouts; and Samuel in the Clouds, directed by Pieter Van Eecke, are to have their world premieres at the MOOOV Film Festival (19 April-3 May) in Belgium. A further three docs from Flanders - The Land of the Enlightened, No Man Is an Island and Reach for the Sky - have also been selected. The MOOOV festival is set to screen 101 films from 37 different countries.

The Invisible City [Kakuma]The Invisible City [Kakuma] follows director Lieven Corthouts to Kakuma, a Kenyan refugee camp where countless unaccompanied minors arrive every day. The children grab all the chances they get and try to build a new life and a future. But can Kakuma offer a real future in a new home or is it just a waiting area, where the only option is to continue the dangerous journey to Europe?

Another documentary world premiering at MOOOV is Samuel in the Clouds by Pieter Van Eecke. The film takes us to Bolivia where Samuel, an elderly ski-lift operator, looks out on the rooftop of the world. Through generations his family have lived and worked in the mountains, but now no snow falls. While scientists discuss and measure ominous changes, Samuel honours the mountain spirits. Will the drifting clouds bring change?

Also selected is Pieter-Jan De Pue’s The Land of the Enlightened, a debut feature that tells the story of war-torn Afghanistan. As American soldiers prepare to leave, the viewer follows De Pue deep into this hidden land where young boys form wild gangs to control trade routes, sell explosives from mines left over from war, using rusting tanks as playgrounds, creating new rules of war based on the harsh landscape left to them. De Pue worked for over five years on his first feature, which received its premiere at Sundance and was also invited to Rotterdam.

The MOOOV programme also features Reach for the Sky by Steven Dhoedt and Choi Wooyoung, which had previously screened in Busan and Leipzig. The film is set in South Korea, where every year more than half-a-million high-school students take part in the National University Exam. The exam will not only determine what university they attend but ultimately their status in Korea’s hierarchical society.

Finally, No Man Is an Island follows director Tim De Keersmaecker as he heads off to Lampedusa, asking himself if this is the promised land or a prison in mid-Mediterranean? Through two unique adoption stories, he tells of the search for freedom by both the Lampedusiani and the island’s newcomers.

The Invisible City [Kakuma] and No Man Is an Island were produced by Emmy Oost for Cassette for Timescapes (Problemski Hotel). Samuel in the Clouds is a production by Hanne Phlypo for Clin d’Oeil Films (Waiting For August). Bart Van Langendonck produced The Land of the Enlightened for Savage Film (The Ardennes). Steven Dhoedt and Gert Van Berckelaer produced Reach for the Sky for Visualantics (The Horseman). All five documentaries received support from the Flanders Audiovisual Fund/Film Fund of Flemish Cultural Affairs Minister Sven Gatz.

Published on Monday 21 March 2016

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