Knokke, Belgium. A small mundane coastal town, home to the beau-monde. To compete with Venice and Cannes, the posh casino hosts the second 'World Festival of Film and the Arts' in 1949, organized in part by the royal cinematheque of Belgium. To celebrate cinema's 50 year existence, they put together a side program showcasing the medium in all its shapes and forms: surrealist film, absolute film, dadaist films, abstract film,... The side program would soon become a festival in its own right: 'EXPRMNTL', dedicated to experimental cinema, and would become a mythical gathering of the avant-garde...
EXPRMNTL knew only five editions, in 1949, 1958, 1963, 1967 and 1974 but those five editions became known as the most legendary of all experimental film festivals.
The documentary 'EXPRMNTL' tells the story of experimental film through the history of this festival, a history which tells us how we came to understand what we watch, a history which questions the very nature of film and how a big part of how we understand our world relies on the very nature of moving images.
VISUALANTICS & CINEMATEK present
a film by BRECHT DEBACKERE
in co-production with CANVAS - RTBF
supported by the FLANDERS AUDIOVISUAL FUND