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ICA CINEMA Distribution
Institute of Contemporary Arts
October 2022
ICA CINEMA brings groundbreaking films from underrepresented and emerging filmmakers to UK audiences.

Since its relaunch in 2016, ICA CINEMA has distributed over 20 releases, supporting innovative, boundary-pushing work from international filmmakers. Recent releases include Adirley Queirós & Joana Pimenta’s Dry Ground Burning, Theo Anthony’s All Light, Everywhere, Roberto Minervini’s What You Gonna Do When the World’s on Fire?, Mariano Llinás’ 14-hour-long La Flor, and RaMell Ross’ Oscar-nominated Hale County, This Morning, This Evening.

Please contact theatricalbookings@ica.art for booking information.


Dry Ground Burning (Mato seco em chamas)

All Light, Everywhere

A Night of Knowing Nothing

Present.Perfect. (Wan Mei Xian Zai Shi)

Dir. Zhu Shengze 
USA / Hong Kong 2019, 124 min., Mandarin with English subtitles
World Premiere: International Film Festival Rotterdam 2019

The explosion of live-streaming platforms in China and the ensuing government crackdown provides the context for Shengze Zhu’s Present.Perfect. (Wan Mei Xian Zai Shi), a work comprising intimate footage shared by twelve Chinese online streamers. Regardless of class, sexuality or physical ability, these personal broadcasters open themselves to an anonymous audience in search of connection. Through a diverse collage of videos, Present.Perfect. encourages us to consider the ways in which we expose ourselves online in pursuit of affirmation, and to confront how, for better or worse, our identities and relationships have become entangled with network technologies.

Heimat is a Space in Time
UK + Ireland Release: 22 November 2019

Dir. Thomas Heise 
Germany / Austria, 2019, 218 min., German and Korean with English subtitles 
World Premiere: Berlin International Film Festival 2019 

Shot in black and white and drawing on letters, diaries, and other personal documents, Heimat is a Space in Time traces the story of German filmmaker Thomas Heise’s family over several generations. Composed of a series of fragmented narratives, the film is a monumental historical essay and moving account of a family torn apart by the upheavals of the 20th century.

What You Gonna Do When the World’s On Fire?
UK + Ireland Release: 18 October 2019

Dir. Roberto Minervini 
Italy / USA / France 2019, 106 min., English 
World Premiere: Venice Film Festival 2018 

A blistering meditation on the state of race in America, Roberto Minervini’s What You Gonna Do When the World’s on Fire? chronicles the lives of Black communities in the Southern states, where the tragic aftermath of Hurricane Katrina remains acutely felt as police brutality claims lives with intolerable regularity.

UK + Ireland Release: 27 September 2019
Dir. Adele Tulli 
Italy 2019, 67 min., Italian with English subtitles 
World Premiere: Berlin International Film Festival 2019 

Through a series of wry and acerbic vignettes, Italian filmmaker Adele Tulli’s Normal playfully exposes the spectacle of gender in our everyday lives. Featuring quotidian scenes shot throughout Italy, the film observes individuals – from childhood to adulthood – navigating normative gendered behaviour. Through intimate and at times satirical observations, Normal asks us to consider where our gendered performances end and our ‘real’ selves begin. 

UK + Ireland Release: 13 September 2019

Dir. Mariano Llinás 
Argentina 2018, 14 hrs. 28 min., Spanish with English subtitles 
World Premiere: Locarno Film Festival 2018 

Over 800 minutes long and a decade in the making, Argentinian filmmaker Mariano Llinás’ La Flor defies cinematic convention. Comprised of six independent, successive stories, the film’s complex narrative is connected by four actresses (Pilar Gamboa, Elisa Carricajo, Laura Paredes and Valeria Correa), who play radically different roles throughout the film’s epic length. Ambitiously moving across different genres and styles – from B-movie to musical to thriller – the film reflects on duplicity, illusion, and the nature of cinema itself. 

UK + Ireland Release: 9 August 2019

Dirs. Lonnie van Brummelen, Siebren de Haan and Tolin Erwin Alexander 
Netherlands / Suriname 2018, 100 min., Saamaka, Okanisi and Dutch with English subtitles 
World Premiere: International Documentary Film Festival Amsterdam (IDFA) 2019 

Stones Have Laws (Dee Sitonu a Weti) is an immersive initiation into the life of a Maroon community in the former Dutch colony of Suriname. Combining stories of African ancestral traditions and escaped slavery with enacted contemporary rituals, the film explores how the community’s powerful ties to the land have become endangered as industries threaten to devastate the region through deforestation and mining. 

Lisbon Beat
UK + Ireland Release: 19 July 2019

Dirs. Rita Maia and Vasco Viana 
Portugal, 2019, 75 min., Portuguese, English, Creole with English subtitles 
World Premiere: IndieLisboa International Film Festival 2019

This exuberant and illuminating documentary portrait of a city and its musicians highlights the innovative Afro-Portuguese music scene thriving on the outskirts of Lisbon. Cinematographer Vasco Viana and Lisbon-born, London-based DJ Rita Maia depict a vibrant community of musicians and producers from diverse backgrounds each establishing their relationship to this complex city. 

Hale County This Morning, This Evening
UK + Ireland Release: 18 January 2019

Dir. RaMell Ross
USA 2018, 76 min., English
World Premiere: Sundance Film Festival 2018

One of the most important works of non-fiction filmmaking of 2019, the Oscar- and Academy Award-nominated Hale County, This Morning, This Evening is an innovative, impressionistic portrait of contemporary life in Hale County, Alabama. Filmed over five years, RaMell Ross’ careful and considered feature offers an urgent political critique, questioning issues of representation and stereotype prevalent in images of Black America.

Meteors (Meteorlar)
UK + Ireland Release: 7 December 2018

Dir. Gürcan Keltek
Netherlands / Turkey 2017, 84 min., Kurdish/Turkish with English subtitles
World Premiere: Locarno Film Festival 2017

Set in a Kurdish town in eastern Turkey and focusing on the troubled history of this conflict-stricken area, Meteors deftly explores the ethics of how we remember the stories, places and voices which have disappeared.

Dead Souls
UK + Ireland Release: 30 November 2018

Dir. Wang Bing
France / Switzerland 2018, 496 min., Chinese with English subtitles
World Premiere: Cannes Film Festival 2018

This monumental eight-hour work unearths the testimonies of China’s re-education camp’s survivors. Following Wang Bing’s Fengming, A Chinese Memoir (2007) and The Ditch (2010), Dead Souls is the third chapter of the director’s in-depth inquiry into the tragic legacy of the Communist Party of China.

UK + Ireland Release: 23 November 2018

Dir. Toia Bonino
Argentina 2017, 65 min., Spanish with English subtitles
World Premiere: Buenos Aires International Festival of Independent Film (BAFICI) 2017

Nuanced and unsettling, Orione is centred on the life of Buenos Aires gang member Alejandro. Through a series of engaging and sometimes uneasily juxtaposed fragments, the film builds a complex picture of a man – and a society – full of contradictions.

The Son (Syn)
UK + Ireland Release: 28 September 2018

Dir. Alexander Abaturov
France / Russia 2018, 71 min., Russian with English subtitles
World Premiere: Berlin International Film Festival 2018

Alexander Abaturov’s feature-length documentary immerses the viewer in the unforgiving world of the Russian military training apparatus, observing the changes that take place in young soldiers as they prepare for violent conflict, their lives intertwined with the fate of the group.

In Praise of Nothing
UK + Ireland Release: 7 September 2018

Dir. Boris Mitić
Serbia / Croatia / France 2017, 78 min., English
World Premiere: Locarno Film Festival 2017

Shot over eight years by 62 cinematographers in 70 countries and narrated in rhyming verse by Iggy Pop, this offbeat and satirical essay-film interweaves moments of playful superficiality with insightful commentary and formal lyricism.

UK + Ireland Release: 24 August 2018

Dir. Clément Cogitore
France / Finland 2017, 50 min., Russian with English subtitles
World Premiere: Marseille Festival of Documentary Film (FID) 2017

In this documentary directed by the French artist, filmmaker and photographer Clément Cogitore, two feuding families – part of an ancient Russian Orthodox Church sect – live in adjoining but otherwise isolated compounds deep in Siberia’s boreal forest.

Distant Constellation
UK + Ireland Release: 17 August 2018

Dir. Shevaun Mizrahi
USA / Turkey / Netherlands 2017, 80 min., Turkish, English, and French with English Subtitles
World Premiere: Locarno Film Festival 2017

Sitting somewhere between ethnography and magical realism, Shevaun Mizrahi’s debut documentary feature records the stories told by the residents of a retirement home in Istanbul.

UK + Ireland Release: 27 July 2018

Dir. Nelson Carlo De Los Santos Arias
The Dominican Republic / Argentina / Germany 2017, 106 min., Spanish with English subtitles
World Premiere: Locarno Film Festival 2017

Blurring the distinctions between fiction and non-fiction, Cocote follows evangelical Christian Alberto as he returns home to the Dominican Republic to attend the funeral of his murdered father. Juxtaposing ethnographic recordings with scripted scenes featuring both professional and non-professional actors, the film offers an immersive and visceral engagement with the violence of loss.

Extinction (Extinção)
UK + Ireland Release: 20 July 2018

Dir. Salomé Lamas
Germany / Portugal 2018, 80 min., Russian with English subtitles
World Premiere: CPH:DOX 2018

Hypnotic and multi-layered, Extinction meditates on the troubled borders of Eastern Europe. Shot in black and white, this filmic essay follows Kolya, a young Moldovan national who declares himself a citizen of Transnistria. Navigating through dreamlike echoes of the Soviet past and Kolya's politically charged encounters in the present, the film describes a landscape in which the borders between past and present remain unsettled.

Tranny Fag (Bixa Travesty)
UK + Ireland Release: 15 June 2018

Dirs. Claudia Priscilla, Kiko Goifman
Brazil 2018, 75 min., Portuguese with English subtitles
World Premiere: Berlin International Film Festival 2018

The rock documentary and political manifesto Tranny Fag depicts the life of Brazilian musician and spoken word artist Linn da Quebrada, a self-proclaimed ‘tranny fag’, who uses her body and music as weapons to fight machismo, transphobia, racism and conformity.

The Wild Boys (Les garçons sauvages)
UK + Ireland Release: 11 May 2018

Dir. Bertrand Mandico
France 2017, 110 min., French with English subtitles
World Premiere: Venice Film Festival 2017

Modelled after William S. Burroughs apocalyptic novel from the early 1970s and featuring an all-female cast at its centre, The Wild Boys is a surreal portrayal of a group of schoolboys exiled to an exotic island after committing a violent crime.

The Young Karl Marx
UK + Ireland Release: 4 May 2018

Dir. Raoul Peck
France / Germany / Belgium 2017, 118 min., English and French with English Subtitles
World Premiere: Berlin International Film Festival 2017

Between censorship and police raids, riots and political upheavals, Karl Marx and Friedrich Engels meet in Paris in 1844, and together, become defining voices for the burgeoning labour movement. This period drama traces the lives of these radical young philosophers from their first meeting through to their co-authorship of The Communist Manifesto.

Plot 35 (Carré 35)
UK + Ireland Release: 9 March 2018

Dir. Eric Caravaca
France / Germany 2017, 67 min., French with English subtitles
World Premiere: Cannes Film Festival 2017

In this deeply personal documentary, director Eric Caravaca explores his family’s painful past, investigating his parents’ lifelong silence about his elder sister, who died aged three. What starts as a chronicle of a forgotten life turns into a universal exploration of existence, death and intimacy.

The Nothing Factory (A Fábrica de Nada)
UK + Ireland Release: 26 January 2018

Dir. Pedro Pinho
Portugal 2017, 177 min., Portuguese with English subtitles
World Premiere: Cannes Film Festival 2017

Unexpectedly morphing from a vérite-like drama into a neorealist musical, The Nothing Factory follows a group of Portuguese workers as they occupy their factory in anticipation of mass layoffs.