The conference will foster cultural exchange among critics, writers and film enthusiasts.
Saudi Film Commission is set to host its first-ever Film Criticism Conference in Riyadh from November 7 to 12, with the primary goal of introducing the art of film criticism to a wider audience. In a press release issued by the Ministry of Culture, it was announced that this conference aims to bring together film critics and cinephiles to engage in thought-provoking discussions on the subject.
The conference, titled “Beyond the Frame,” is expected to delve into the broader perspectives and concepts of cinema. It represents a significant effort by the Film Commission to create a cultural exchange platform for critics, academics, and film enthusiasts, allowing them to explore film criticism from various angles.
Eng. Abdullah Al Eyaf, CEO of the Saudi Film Commission, said: “Through this year’s Film Criticism Conference and Forum Series, the commission aims to stimulate the criticism movement to complement the rapid growth in the production, exhibition and distribution of Saudi, Arab, and international films in the Kingdom.”
He added: “The film industry’s growth across all its segments contributes to realising the goals of the National Cultural Strategy, boosts Saudi culture and enhances its presence at international platforms and global events.”
Al Eyaf commended the continuous support from and keen interest of the leaders of the cultural sector, represented by Minister of Culture Prince Bader bin Abdullah bin Farhan Al Saud, who follow the wise leadership’s vision of enhancing the Kingdom’s cultural presence across all fields.
The conference’s agenda includes a series of discussions, such as a talk by director Yousry Nasrallah on “the relationship between filmmaking and film criticism.” Additionally, live on-stage dialogues will feature prominent figures in the fields of film criticism and filmmaking, including Brazilian director Kleber Mendonça Filho.
Dr Saad al-Bazai, a Professor of English Literature, will deliver a presentation on the critical approach to cinema and storytelling. Indian film critic Shubhra Gupta will conduct a professional course on film criticism as a career.
An art exhibition offering interactive experiences and workshops will be part of the conference, alongside screenings of various international films during the event.
Furthermore, the conference’s programme will involve a review of the fundamentals of film criticism and the diverse experiences that enable critics to perceive what is not captured by the camera’s lens while recognising the implicit connotations and artistic references in cinema.
The conference will also provide a platform for analysing 10 selected films known for their rich content, with directors from different countries offering their insights. These activities aim to enhance the understanding of the different expressions of art and culture in cinema and their role in the broader cinematic landscape.
The event is held in collaboration with the Diplomatic Quarter of The Royal Commission for Riyadh City and a media partnership with Sollywood, the news platform for cinema.