NOW IN its third year, the Hungarian Film Festival (HUFF) is expanding its reach to cities outside Metro Manila as it tries to “present the essence of Hungarian cinema to more and more Filipinos in Cebu and Davao,” according to a press release.

The festival, which opens on Nov. 13 at the Red Carpet Cinemas at Shangri-La Plaza Mall in Mandaluyong, presents five films.

The festival runs for a week in Metro Manila while viewers in Cebu and Davao will have monthly screenings of the festival films until December.

It is presented by the Hungarian Embassy to the Philippines and the Film Development Council of the Philippines.

Opening this year’s HUFF is Kincsem — Bet on Revenge (2017) by Gábor Herendi. The film is a historical adventure loosely based on the exploits of Kincsem, a world-famous racing horse of unparalleled speed. Set against the backdrop of 19th-century political turmoil in Hungary, the film is a tale of love, revenge, and sportsmanship.

The other films on view for the week are: Brazilok or Brazilians (2017) by Csaba M. Kiss and Gábor Rohonyi, a tale told with humor and tears about a gypsy football team; Genezis or Genesis (2018) by Árpád Bogdán, about boy who lives with his grandparents after an attack on his Roma village kills his mother.

“[The film is] a dramatic depiction of sin, catharsis, and rebirth with strong biblical roots, the story is told via the journeys of very different individuals from completely separate sections of society whose paths never cross but whose fates become intricately entwined as they twist through the shadow cast by a horrendous crime,” the release said of the film.

Moszkva tér or Moscow Square (2001) by Ferenc Török is a period piece set in April 1989 during the collapse of Communist regimes in Europe. Four friends spend their evenings hanging around the clock tower in Moscow Square, while all around them the old regime is teetering on the brink — everyone feels that something is about to happen. The question is whether they make it happen or just wait for whatever’s coming.

For younger audiences, the festival presents Tales from the Lakeside (2017) by Zsolt Pálfi. The animated feature film — dubbed in English — tells the story of a tiny hero who tries to save the lake he lives in.

Lakeside introduces a wonderful microcosm around a small lake, where inspiring creatures defend their quiet corner of the world,” the release said.

All films are screened for free and will have English subtitles except Lakeside which is dubbed in English. For more information and for the screening schedule, visit the Embassy of Hungary’s Facebook page. — ZBC