Erotic horseplay, Norwegian cringe comedy, Cornish coastal chills, French absurdity, Slovakian folk horror: BUFF’s 23rd anniversary celebrated terrors from near and far and was unequivocally our best-attended edition yet!

Opening night film THE UNHEARD enjoyed a hometown hero’s welcome, kicking off a program full of introspection and examinations of the heady and horrific from all corners of the globe.

Between screening over 90 short films, music videos, and feature films, and five nights of cozy, COVID-friendly cavorting in outdoor terraces around Harvard Square, we were humbled by the return of many familiar faces.

A film festival is more than just an opportunity to see new films or commune with fellow cinephiles; it’s a community, a sanctuary, an inimitable experiential monument to the myriad powers of visual storytelling enjoyed in a communal setting. Film is meant to be enjoyed on a massive screen with an audience and passionately discussed afterwards. It’s important now, more than ever, to show up and support our institutions of art and culture, our rising generation of filmmakers, and our local communities. 

Enormous thanks go to our partners at the Brattle Theatre — their staff and volunteers — for hosting our annual audio-visual bacchanalia in the safest way possible and to those of you who bought tickets and badges and showed up for us and each other, and to the insanely talented filmmakers who screened their work. 

Infinite gratitude to the Massachusetts Cultural Council for its support and to our event hosts at: Whitneys, the Association Notre Dame of Cambridge, The Lilypad, and Wusong Road. Awe, love, and endless thanks to our sponsors: AVID, DigBoston, Nightshift Brewing, the Denman Drapkin Group at Compas, UPrinting.com, the invaluable work of BudgetDCP, the saviors of cinema etiquette – Triple Yeah Productions, our friends at—IFFBoston, Women in Film and Video New England, NEON, Magnolia, Shudder, RLJE, Utopia Films, Oscilloscope, Yellow Veil Pictures, Dark Star Pictures —and BUFF’s incredible volunteer staff.

It was thrilling to gather, devour, and explore the variety of films and themes that comprised this year’s lineup together. It’s a sincere labor of love to put this event together year after year and we do it with just a handful of cash, no corporate sponsorship, and very few hours of sleep; a feat of a 100%-volunteer team driven by passion for films and our film community.

Against all odds, we’ve made it here – exhausted and victorious – to the end of our twenty-third edition and we already can’t wait to see you back at the Brattle this time next year.

While BUFF 2023 is now behind us, we’re already excitedly at work on our 24th edition. In the meantime, indulge in a little nostalgia for our 23rd edition via the links below. Viva la underground!