MakeDox takes place June 15 - 22 in Skopje, Macedonia, with several "onion-themed" sections and over 60 documentary films. This year, as part of the Balkan Onion programme, the festival takes a closer look at films from the Balkans.
MakeDox awards will be presented to the best documentaries - The Onion Award for best film in international competition, Spring Onion for best film by a newcomer and Onion Seed for best film for children and youth. Two special awards are ready for best film on human rights issues and best film tackling moral and ethical issues. Sliced Onion award higlihgting the best short doc may be swept by an East Silver Caravan title - I Will Forget This Day by Alina Rudnitskaya.
In addition to its film programme, MakeDox will host several panel discussions, workshops and a photography exhibition.
Look at some of the East European highlights in the 2012 MakeDox lineup:
Argentyńska lekcja , Poland, 2011, 56 min, Digi Beta, Creative, Personal View, Society, Travel
In 1998 Wojciech Staroń made the documentary film "The Siberian Lesson". The film told the story of a young teacher who emigrated to the vicinity of Lake Baikal in order to teach Polish deportees’ descendants their native language. Many years later, as a married couple with two children, the director and his wife are leaving for Argentina. For their little son, this trip will not only be an encounter with an unknown language. Influenced by their Argentinian friend, Janek enters the fascinating world of imagination, and is introduced to the bitterness of childhood prematurely contaminated by the problems of grown-ups.
Mirage , Serbia, United Kingdom, 2011, 42 min, Digi Beta, HD, Experimental, Human Rights, Social Issues
At the edge of a city growing from the desert, a man plays alone on a golf course. Another, sleepless, sends a letter from a labour camp to his wife in Kenya. A sand storm hits a construction site, and the locals hold a strange dance ceremony.Dubai, usually seen either as miracle of development or failed gimmick, here becomes a set for a visual exploration of displacement, longing and desire. In three chapters the city, the surrounding desert and their inhabitants slowly uncover some of the darker aspects of contemporary society, while the ongoing economic meltdown spells the end of an era.
Blokada , Croatia, 2012, 92 min, Social Issues
‘Blockade’ is a creative documentary of the longest, and politically most significant student protest in the region, the blockade of the Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences in Zagreb, in April and May of 2009. The film chronologically follows the preparatory meetings of a group of students who plan to take over their faculty’s building during one week, the action of taking over the building by the students and the process of communication and the attempts of these students to communicate with authorities. After the initial week it becomes clear that the blockade is becoming bigger than its initiators and the method of blocking classes spreads to about twenty other faculties around the country, it goes on for 34 days and becomes the number one media topic in Croatia. The film follows the lives of the participants during the blockade, the conflicts between them and their uncompromising joint struggle, and finally the deliberation on the decision to cease the blockade and continue the campaign through other actions.
Bulgaria, Germany, 2011, 57 min, Digi Beta, Creative, Entertainment, Portrait
"Dad Made Dirty Movies" chronicles the life and work of Stephen C. Apostolof (aka A. C. Stephen) - a former political prisoner, devoted Christian and family man and one of the greatest erotic filmmakers in the U.S. The film traces A. C. Stephen's escape from communist dictatorship in Bulgaria and his journey to Hollywood, where he made his American dream come true. Over the course of a film career that lasted two turbulent decades, A. C. Stephen made seventeen low-brow, low-budget softcore films. Today A. C. Stephen's legacy lives on, ridiculed or revered by both critics and fans alike. A. C. Stephen has taken a permanent place in the B-movie culture and is widely recognized as one of the greatest American erotic filmmakers.
Nickyho rodina , Czech Republic, Slovak Republic, 2011, 96 min, 35 mm, DCP, Docu drama, History
Dramatic follow-up of the documentary The Power of Good about Nicholas Winton’s Kindertransport rescue mission. This film enhances the original story with a number of dramatic re-enactments narrated by the rescued children and Sir Winton himself, rare archival footage and interviews with some of today’s most influential personalities. Joe Schlesinger, a CBC reporter and one of the rescued children, is the guide in the film, who presents not only how Winton’s act changed his life, but also how it continues to influence the lives of thousands of others worldwide. As the young generation, inspired by Winton’s story, tries to cope with present-day problems and actively tries to help make the world a better place.
Auk Nr 8 , Estonia, Russia, 2010, 95 min, HD, Creative, Personal View, Social Issues
In the heart of a once thriving Ukrainian coal-mining region everybody digs – retirees, unemployed miners and even the children. Years ago, the town's desperate residents decided to start mining illegally; they excavate everywhere!!! The story focuses on the Sikanov family, which has three children. 15-year-old Yura, the grandson of a powerful Soviet plant director, is the head of the family working as a miner in the illegal pit. Most Jura wants to run his own cafe somewhere far from home, but the responsibility for the two sisters and looming economic crisis pushes his dreams in the distant future.
Ya zabudu etot den , Russia, 2011, 25 min, 35 mm, Beta SP, Creative, Gender, Social Issues
You can forget. You have to forget. It's impossible to forget... A woman's feelings and thoughts just before having an abortion.
East Silver / East Silver Caravan 2012