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Glasgow Film Festival: 'The city is one of the stars.'

Glasgow Film Festival: 'The city is one of the stars.'

The Glasgow Film Festival has arrived.

Opening tonight with a gala at Grand Central Hotel, the Chilean-influenced tenth Glasgow Film Festival includes a seductive alien Scarlett Johansson film, potholing experiences beneath Central Station and over 60 UK premieres.

We grabbed five minutes with Allan Hunter, co-director of the GFF, to find out his picks of the festival and which actor sparked his life-long love of movies.

"There's a special atmosphere at the Glasgow Film Festival," he said.

"It's maybe the way it touches every part of the city. You go to festivals in some countries, go to the cinema, come away again and don't see the city. Doing something in Kelvingrove, the stuff we have on at The Tall Ship, things we did last year in Glasgow Cathedral... this year you can go potholing under Glasgow Central Station to see a film.

"All those little things bring the city into the festival. It makes the city one of the stars."

Allan's Film Festival highlights

"There are so many films to choose from, it's difficult to pick."

"I'll go firstly for Go For Sisters. John Sayles [director] came to the festival over five years ago, so it's nice to have someone who's coming back with a film.

"It's a broken America, Texas-Mexican border movie, where two women are such good friends in their youth they are taken as sisters. It's about how they reconnect in disillusioned middle age. I like that film a lot."

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Illiterate

"I'll go for one of our Chilean films next, Illiterate. We have a Chilean focus this year," said Allan.

"People might have seen Paulina Garcia in Gloria, she won Best Actress at Berlin."

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Things the Way They Are

"Next is Things the Way They Are. There's a young guy in it with a spectacular beard," said Allan.

"It's about a reclusive boarding house, one student comes to stay and in a way it rekindles the young man's life and makes him feel differently about the world. That's a UK premiere."

Peter Sun

Quai d'Orsay

"Quai d'Orsay is like a French Yes Minister," said Allan.

"Political scandals, civil servants and barmy politicians - no resemblance to real life whatsoever..."

Deadline Hollywood

Blame it on Buster Keaton

"A long time ago, when I was a child at school there was a season of Buster Keaton one Christmas," recalls Allan of what sparked his interest in film.

"I dragged my parents to see them and it was all piano accompaniment, in this dinghy little basement cinema.

"I must have seen those Buster Keaton films and just thought they were fantastic. I went to see one with my parents and had them asleep at either side of me. After that I wanted to know more about who Buster Keaton was and about other films. Blame it all on Buster Keaton."

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Joan of Arc and Young Frankenstein

"Last year we were in Glasgow Cathedral to watch The Passion of Joan of Arc, we had a soprano singing along to the film. It was a goosebump film," said Allan.

"That worked because it was in that space.

"This year you can go under Central Station where you've never gone before. If you're claustrophobic or scared of the dark please don't come along.

"This year at Kelvingrove - we don't think there's been a film event like this ever before. It's Young Frankenstein, it's the 40th anniversary of the GFT and it's a good place to have a fancy dress masked ball. We are using places that lend themselves to one-off unique events."

For a full list of upcoming Glasgow Film Festival events you can visit their website.

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