MONSTRA | Animated Film Festival returns from March 8 th to 18 th to celebrate her 18 th birthday. For this edition, the festival will pay tribute to Estonia’s animation cinema through the screening of 140 films from this country. This includes historical and contemporary films, director retrospectives, such as Priit Pärn, Priit Tender, Kaspar Jancis, Ülo Pikkov or Rao Heidmets, feature-length and short films, and films for families. Estonia, which is celebrating in 2018 its 100 years of independence from the Russian Empire, was the first European country to make stereoscope films and, for that reason, MONSTRA’s line-up includes a screening session of short stereoscopic films and of the feature Lisa Limone And Maroc Orange – A Rapid Love Story, by Mait Laas.

For this edition, there are 7 films in the international feature film competition: The
Breadwinner, nominated for Best Animated Feature in the 2018 Oscars, directed by
Nora Twomey; Have a Nice Day, by Chinese director Liu Jian, which has been suffering
heavy censorship in its home-country; Ethel & Ernest, by British director Roger
Mainwood; Cinderella The Cat, an Italian film directed by Ivan Cappiello, Marino
Guarnieri, Alessandro Rak and Dario Sansone; Rabbit Schoole, by the German director
Ute von Münchow-Pohl; The Oddsockeaters, from Czech Republic, directed by Galina
Miklinova; and A Silent Voice, by the young Japanese director Naoko Yamada.
There will be 12 short films, produced in 2017 and 2018 by directors such as André
Ruivo, Catarina Sobral, Marta Monteiro, Joana Imaginário, Joana Toste, Pedro
Serrazina, among others, competing for the Vasco Granja / SP Autores Award.

As always, MONSTRA will also have sections for the Short-film, Student and Super
Short (films up to 2’ long) competitions, as well as the Monstrinha competition, dedicated to the younger audience of the festival. MONSTRA is, once again, paying tribute to the Japanese animation cinema. This year, director Kunio Katō, who won an Oscar in 2008 for Best Animated Short Film with The House of Small Cubes, is coming to Lisbon for a retrospective of his short films. There will also be a tribute to director Mamoru Hosoda, with the screening of 4 feature- length films. There will be a screening of the film Gauche the Cellist, directed by the cofounder of Studio Ghibli, master Isao Takahata. Finally, the also Oscar-winning director Koji Yamamura will, too, be in Lisbon to present a retrospective of his work, and of the work of his students at Tokio University, who are attending the Monstra at the University program.

One of the great features this year is the premiere of the film Early Man, directed by Nick Park and produced by the british studios Aardman. The film debuts on March 7 th, the day before the official start of the festival, bringing to Lisbon Emanuel Nevado, member of the animation team of the film, and director Nick Park, who, on March 10 th, will give a masterclass and present his films at MONSTRA.

On the historical sections, which is entitled “Evasions for Freedom” in this edition, the following films will be presented: Yellow Submarine, George Dunning’s acclaimed film about The Beatles and the 60s, which is turning 50 this year; René Laloux’ Fantastic Planet, which is turning 45; Dave Borthwick’s The Secret Adventures of Tom Thumb, which is turning 25; and The Triplets of Belleville, turning 15, directed by Sylvain Chomet, who is coming to Lisbon to talk about his work on a masterclass.

MONSTRA 2018 is also showcasing films on the following sections: DokAnim (animation documentaries, depicted by two feature films and a retrospective on the DokLeipzig Festival), TerrorAnim (horror animation films), Monstra Triple X (a selection of explicit films, audiences 18 up), Experimental Cinema, and ClipAnim (animation music videos, selected by musician Filipe Raposo). The film The Origin of Sound, directed by Dutch director Paul Driessen, will have its world premiere during the award ceremony and an exhibition on the windows of Cinema São Jorge.

From Match 1st to 10th, The World’s Smallest Cinema from the group Ciné Troupe
returns to Praça Luís de Camões with a selection of films for the super shorts, competing for the Golden Peanut.
During the weekends of the festival, in the Family Program section, there will once again be free sessions at Baby Monstra (for children under 3 years old), Estonian shorts and feature films for families. Apart from the films, animation workshops will be offered to both parents and children.

MONSTRA will hold sessions at schools inside and outside of Lisbon, with a line-up
conceived for the younger audiences: MONSTRINHA. Keeping the older students in mind, we offer MONSTRA at to University.

At Museu da Marioneta, an exhibition in honour of Nukufilm’s 60th anniversary will
open on the 1st of March, where 8 sets of their puppet animation films from Estonia will be showcased, as well as 4 sets of Portuguese stop motion films (That’s How It Was, directed by Joana Nogueira and Patrícia Rodrigues; Axl Rose, directed by Bruno Caetano and Rui Telmo Romão; Amélia and Duarte, directed by Alice Guimarães and Mónica Santos; and The Sounds From The Drawers, directed by Victor Hugo).

From March 8th to 18th, MONSTRA On the Loose will be in Lisbon.