Morelia Film Festival, the most important in Mexico, began on Friday with the screening of the new movie from Mexican Alejandro González Iñarritu: Birdman or (The Unexpected Virtue of Ignorance).
Birdman has been highly acclaimed by critics from the various festivals in which it has already been screened, and is a strong favorite for winning the 2014 Oscar. Iñarritus’ film premiered during Venice Film Festival, in September.
The movie tells the story of Riggan Thomson, a once successful actor who is struggling to overcome the fame of his most well-known character: the superhero Birdman. The movie coincides with the life of its protagonist Michael Keaton, who rose to fame for his role of Batman in the 1989 and 1992 movies.
According to Iñarritu, making Birdman was one of the best experiences of his career. The Mexican won best director in Cannes in 2006 with Babel, and also opened the 2010 Morelia Film Festival edition with Biutiful.
During the festival, that will run from October 17-26, more than 87 movies will be screened in four different categories: local films, Mexican documentary, Mexican shorts, and Mexican films. In total, 12 Mexican films are in the running for the festival’s best movie prize.
In its 12th edition, the festival gathered four international special guests: French actress Juliette Binoche, Israeli director Amos Gitai, Polish filmmaker Pawel Pawilikowski, and French cinema celebrity Pierre Rissient.
Morelia is the capital city of Michoacan, which in the last years has become one of the most violent Mexican states.
At the opening of the festival the state’s substitute governor Salvador Jara was present, as the elected governor left his position in June, due to the violence of the state related with drug cartels.