Barely had we announced this year’s line-up a few weeks ago, that the Raindance office was bombarded with phone calls. Agencies, political lobbies, censors and pressure groups (from the hard left and far right) were demanding we remove certain of our titles.

Veiled threats of ban or even legal action stand against a record number of our selections. There’s definitely something in the air this year. Many are fearful: afraid of where the UK film industry is directed and afraid of funding cuts. Globally, those in power are also afraid of people sharing their thoughts, opinions, ways of living, loves and fears. Prejudices and politics seem to be taking aim against the arts, and we’ve felt the tremors more than ever this year.

So we've put our foot down. We're committed to sticking to what we feel the festival is about and we’re thrilled to bring you the best independent films of the year. Whether you (dis)agree with them, are enthralled, titillated, maybe even disgusted, we’re certain there’s plenty to feast upon and open your eyes to, and even more for you to fall in love with.

Join us for what we feel is the most daring, original and imaginative Raindance festival line-up to date, hosting a wealth of films that are captivating, thought-provoking and scandalously provocative. We hope you can share with us this magical and powerful world of cinema and embrace its ability to mould and change our environment for the better.

After all, we’re all eighteen, shouldn't we be able to make up our own minds?

Here are my Top Ten Picks

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