Through daring feats of eclectic and discerning programming, the Black Movie International Festival of Independent Film allows Genevans to discover the vitality of the global art-house underworld. While Western distributors remain largely oblivious to Asian, African, Middle-Eastern and Latin-American productions, for twenty years the festival has been giving them their due. This year, more than a hundred films—supplemented by masterclasses, round-table discussions and an exhibition of filmmakers’ portraits—will transport attendees to such varied locales as Kirghizstan, Mexico, Syria and Senegal.

These minority voices are worth hearing, which is why we’re renewing our partnership with Black Movie and inviting our film-minded customers to a roundtable and a screening, punctuated by invigorating drinks. The roundtable will bring together Gianni Haver, Professor of Sociology of the Image at the University of Lausanne; Malek Bensmail, director of The Battle of Algiers, a film in history; and Thomas Aïdan, editorial director of La Septième Obsession. It will focus on ‘History and Cinema’, and more precisely on film as a medium through which events are remembered—or perhaps re-written.

After sharing libations and spirited conversations at the conference venue, attendees will be invited to walk two hundred metres down the block for a screening of Jang Hoon’s A Taxi Driver, a historical thriller that follows a local cabby and a German reporter through the streets of Gwangju, during the city’s bloodily repressed uprising of 1980. It is only over the past two years, following a new official investigation, that the full extent of the atrocities committed by government forces has come into focus, and this film will certainly play its part in perpetuating the memory of these events.

To attend, please email aesopgeneva@aesop.com by 23 January. Should you wish to bring a guest, please do, but be sure to specify their name so we can add them to the list. Please note that the number of available seats is limited; they will be awarded to the swiftest respondents.

‘Memory is not an instrument for surveying the past but its theatre.’

Walter Benjamin