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Dare

In-your-face, up-front and arresting: films that take you out of your comfort zone.

Just what are we capable of? From our potential for cruelty (Harmony Lessons, Half of a Yellow Sun, Lebanon Emotion) to our capacity for endurance (Episode in the Life of an Iron Picker, The Golden Dream, Camille Claudel 1915) these films push the very limits of comfort and go further. The filmmaking here is audacious; pushing the boundaries of visual form (The Fear, As I Lay Dying) and narrative expectation (Exhibition, Eastern Boys). Intense, emotionally-charged cinema from the cutting-edge: these are that films dare to be bold.

Clare Stewart, Jemma Desai

Dare Gala

Stranger By the LakeStranger By the Lake

An enigmatic meditation on love, sex and murderous desire set in a gay cruising ground in picturesque Southern France.

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As I Lay DyingAs I Lay Dying

Ambitious and powerful adaptation of William Faulkner’s classic novel, following a Southern family’s trials in transporting a body for burial.

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Camille Claudel 1915Camille Claudel 1915

Juliette Binoche and writer-director Bruno Dumont join forces for this searching portrait of the troubled sculptor and her poet brother.

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Eastern BoysEastern Boys

Desire, danger and love are key themes in this story about a solitary Parisian and a young Ukrainian migrant, from writer-director Robin Campillo.

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An Episode in the Life of an Iron PickerAn Episode in the Life of an Iron Picker

Danis Tanović’s drama on the plight of a Bosnian Roma family needing urgent medical care reconstructs the actors’ real experiences to shocking effect.

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ExhibitionExhibition

An artist couple find that selling their imposing London home starts to open fissures in their relationship in Joanna Hogg’s coolly-observed fable.

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Exhibits or Stories From the CastleExhibits or Stories From the Castle

A sensitive and humorous documentary account of life in a castle in Slovakia – home to people who have lost everything but their zest for living.

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The FearThe Fear

A sparse, gripping meditation on domestic violence screens with a dramatic Basque short that contemplates power and responsibility.

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The Golden DreamThe Golden Dream

Diego Quemada-Diez’s debut feature draws astounding turns from a non-professional cast as Guatemalan teenagers on the perilous road to the US border.

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Half of a Yellow SunHalf of a Yellow Sun

Civil war shatters the comfortable illusions of Nigeria’s middle class in Biyi Bandele’s feature debut, an epic 1960s-set love story.

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Harmony LessonsHarmony Lessons

Emir Baigazin’s feature debut is an daring, deeply philosophical study of human cruelty through the eyes of a small-town schoolboy loner.

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Jeune et JolieJeune et Jolie

François Ozon returns with the provocative story a 17-year-old student on an unexpected journey of sexual self-discovery.

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KalpanaKalpana

Dance maestro Uday Shankar’s beautiful, experimental, hallucinatory paean to classical Indian dance, in which the choreography itself is the star turn.

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Lebanon EmotionLebanon Emotion

A grieving loner finds his life turned upside-down when he stumbles into a brutal underworld grudge-match in Jung Youngheon’s award-winning debut.

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Let the Fire BurnLet the Fire Burn

Original news broadcasts and archive footage tell how 11 people died when Philadelphia’s police tried to crush the African-American MOVE group in 1985.

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A Long and Happy LifeA Long and Happy Life

Boris Khlebnikov’s take on Western High Noon, is a distinctly Russian interrogation on the ideals of socialism.

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Norte, the End of HistoryNorte, the End of History

A Filipino law student’s act of violence has catastrophic consequences far beyond his victims in Lav Diaz’s spellbinding Dostoevsky-tinged drama.

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One Day When the Rain FallsOne Day When the Rain Falls

In three chapters, each played as a different genre (drama, horror, comedy), Ifa Isfansyah uncovers the secrets of an Indonesian family.

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La PazLa Paz

From the co-director of The Lips comes the beautifully realised tale of a young man adapting to life after a spell in a psychiatric clinic.

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Portrait of JasonPortrait of Jason

Shirley Clarke’s cinéma vérité masterpiece about a gay African-American cabaret performer and prostitute revealingly restored.

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ShameShame

A moving story of the women who wait for their submariner husbands, set against the desolate beauty of Russia’s Kola peninsula.

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Story of My DeathStory of My Death

Albert Serra’s teasing period-piece sees Casanova and Dracula meeting as Enlightenment reason gives way to the dangerous passions of the Romantic era.

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A Touch of SinA Touch of Sin

Jia Zhangke’s Cannes prizewinner comprising four fact-based stories of violence and murder is a virtual state of the nation report on China in 2013.

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VictimVictim

Basil Dearden’s brave, sober exposé of England’s repressive homosexual laws launched Dirk Bogarde’s career change as a serious international actor.

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VioletteViolette

Emmanuelle Devos offers a career-best performance as pioneering writer and feminist icon Violette Leduc, in this stark depiction of creative struggle.

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You Took a Child and You Made Them OldYou Took a Child and You Made Them Old

Children set their own boundaries to uncomfortable effect in eight short films.

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