A Bird’s Eye View

Grace Davies
6 March 2008

Now in its fourth year, Bird's Eye View is a London-based international film festival celebrating women filmmakers from around the world. Ten days of documentaries, new features, workshops, retrospectives and short films showcase the best new work by female directors. And in an overwhelmingly male-dominated industry, it is much needed. With a few notable exceptions such as Sofia Coppola and Mira Nair, the female director is - or is thought to be - a rarity. The packed programme of this year's festival gloriously proves otherwise.

Kicking off tonight at a gala on London's South Bank, it runs from 6-14 March with screenings at top venues around London. Highlights include a preview of the Oscar-nominated Iranian animation, Persepolis set during the Islamic revolution in late 70s Tehran, and adapted from her own graphic novel of the same name by Marjane Satrapi. A strong documentary strand includes Sabiha Sumar's timely Dinner with the President exploring political power and human rights in Pakistan, and Meena Nanji's View From a Grain of Sand, journeying through the last 30 years of Afghanistan's turbulent history as lived by three women. Elsewhere, comedy shorts hosted by leading British comediennes, and a retrospective ‘Screwball Women and Clowning Glories' honouring past comic brilliance provide the light relief.

Encompassing International Women's Day on 8 March, it provides a welcome celebration of the creative powers of women around the world, and we will be bringing you a taste of the action over the next week. For more information on screenings taking place around London visit the BEV site.


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