Zagreb Film Festival releases one of this year's themes: Tycoons

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Time Out contributors

Tycoons, oligarchs, magnates; there are many words to describe those who hold great wealth, influence and power at the slim top of the capitalist system. Some descriptions hold their own specifics, and some are more complimentary than others. These figures lie a world away from the lives of most people, their wealth and standing acquired via often suspicious means or passed down from generation to generation, ensuring that few outside can ever attain or begin to understand such power and riches.

In today's world, such people taint the lives of every man and woman alive, their unseen hands guiding us and halting us as we travel through life. Alongside the environmental rape of the planet for short-term gains, they are the only logical end result of a capitalist system many seem to embrace, their effect on our lives more akin to being urinated on than the 'trickle down' economics such figures are purported to provide.

These tycoons will come under closer inspection at 2018's approaching Zagreb Film Festival, Croatia's premier film event. The festival's programme holds several themes this year, with the Tycoon presentations, curated by critic Diana Nenadić, joining a recently announced showcase of Czech filmmakers, the ZFF PLUS programme plus the festival's ambitious expansion to several cities outside Zagreb.

Five films make up the Tycoon programme during the festival. 'The Promised Land', Polish director Andrzej Wajda's classic 1975 indictment on deceit and greed, depicts a Pole, a German and a Jew who, before a gluttonous capitalist backdrop, aims to build a factory. Gentle and heartfelt Scottish movie 'Local Hero' is a classic of the 1980s, shot on the west coast of Scotland and shows the attempts of an American oil company man as he tries to buy the town and its surroundings. 'Il Caimano' is a comedy-drama showing some of the vice and excesses of Silvio Berlusconi's time when Italian Prime Minister, the film proving so popular in Italy that it doubtless contributed to Berlusconi's failure at the elections which immediately followed its release. 2009 film 'I Am Love' actually examines the lack of love within the lives of several members of an upper-class Italian family, the film being the first installment in Luca Guadagnino's Desire trilogy, which was followed by 'A Bigger Splash' in 2015 and 2017's highly successful coming-of-age drama 'Call Me By Your Name'. Sensational 2011 documentary 'Khodorkovsky' follows the tale of the wealthy oil tycoon Mikhail Khodorkovsky, who ends up in prison after publicly accusing Russia's President Putin of corruption.

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