There are many means to express individuality and discover what it is that makes us what we are. Whether its playing sport, painting or performance art, there are ways by which we find out if we stand out from the crowd.
In the offbeat US indie film Puzzle, which has opened this year’s Edinburgh film festival, put-upon housewife Agnes (Kelly Macdonald) is sentenced to a life of chores while becoming servile to her boorish husband Louie (David Denman) and two adult sons.
Life is a roster of supporting this ungrateful family while leaving her with little to enjoy for herself.
Relief from this daily grind comes in the shape of a jigsaw puzzle. As she gets a taste for literally piecing together an alternative lifestyle she is drawn into competitions whereupon she meets Robert (Irrfan Khan), a wealthy inventor and talent spotter who promises to take her on a puzzle journey.
What the film is really about, of course, is the emergence of a woman from her stifled existence into an individual with personality and a talent for expression. It could almost serve as a totem for our times as women rebel against suppression and even guilt.
Puzzle is based on a 2009 Argentinian drama and is directed by Marc Turtletaub, who also attended the opening night and worked with screenwriters Oren Moverman and Polly Mann.
It marked the opening of the 12-day Edinburgh International Film Festival which will see 121 new features from 48 countries, 21 of them world premieres. It is the world’s longest continually-running film festival.
Steve Coogan, Samantha Morton, Billie Piper, Game of Thrones star Natalie Dormer, Billy Zane and Ben Elton are among the other stars expected to grace the red carpet.
Morton and Piper appear in British coming-of-age drama Two For Joy, while other-home grown films include Mary Shelley, a new biopic on the author behind the classic horror creation Frankenstein, and new comedy Eaten By Lions, which sees Johnny Vegas star alongside Jack Carroll and Asim Chaudry.
Other highlights include a screening of Disney-Pixar animation Incredibles 2 and a series of in-person events, with guests including Welsh comedian Rob Brydon, English writer and director David Hare and The Secret Of Marrowbone actor George MacKay whose credits include Sunshine on Leith.
Mark Adams, artistic director, said: “We remain one of the world’s most venerable and acclaimed film festivals and we’re delighted to be able to offer audiences the chance to see some of the most exciting and innovative new film talent, in a setting steeped in history.”
The opening film premiere was attended by a number of well-known faces as jurors or guests.