IDFA - International Documentary Film Festival Amsterdam
November 16 - 27, 2011
Amsterdam / Netherlands
>You can catch us at IDFA Nov 21-23, more details here.
Although no East European docs grace IDFA's feature-length competition - the VPRO IDFA Award for Best Feature-Length Documentary and a cash prize of EUR 12,500 will be presented to one of these 16 films - the IDFA Competition for Mid-Length Documentary includes several films by C&E European filmmakers who have a chance to win the NTR IDFA Award and EUR 10,000.
Latvian director Laila Pakalnina who pitched A Dream of Snow at the 2007 Docu Talents from the East and joined the 2010 East Silver Caravan with On Rubik's Road travels to Amsterdam with no less than 33 Animals of Santa Claus. Noosfera by Ileana Stanculescu and Artchil Khetagouri has benefited from a number of IDF's interlocking activities over the years - from the 2007 Ex Oriente Film and the East European Forum all the way to Ex Oriente Film Babies in 2011. Julia Panasenko's Outro was a 2011 Silver Eye Award nominee; Violated Letters by Maciej Drygas explores Poland's postwar history through correspondence, and in With Fidel Whatever Happens, Goran Radovanovic picks over the remnants of a stagnant revolution.
33 Zvēri ziemassvētku vecītim , Latvia, 2011, 50 min, DCP, Digi Beta, Creative, Portrait
Santa Claus lives on the 4th floor of an apartment house. Santa owns 7 dogs, 6 cats, 2 rabbits, 1 crow, 1 pigeon, 1 chinchilla, 1 guinea pig, 10 degus and some fish.
Noosfera , Romania, 68 min, Digi Beta, Creative, Personal View, Philosophy, Portrait
Noosfera is the story of a sociology professor, Nicolae S. Dumitru, who dreamed all his life about the ideal society and the perfect love. But, unfortunately, in his private life, he could never reach his ideals. Already his first marriage to a Russian woman ends up with a divorce. The professor divides his apartment in two: one half for himself and the other half for his former wife. He builds a wall in between and calls it the Berlin Wall. In the eighties he falls in love with one of his students, Melania, who becomes his second wife. But when the professor looses his political career his second marriage collapses as well. He builds a second wall and calls it the Chinese Wall. In spite of all these private problems, the professor continues to dream of Noosfera and stays an optimist. And suddenly, in his old age, he finds his third love.
Cudze listy , Poland, 2011, 55 min, Archive , Creative, History, Politics, Society
After WWII Poland fell under the communist bloc against the will of the majority of society. The film is an attempt to show the soul of Polish society through private letters. Letters were censored and often used to persecute the sender and the receiver although the Constitution Act guaranteed secrecy of correspondence in the People’s Republic of Poland. This black-and-white film is a mosaic of never shown archive footage, letters which are read by carefully chosen voices and Secret Service internal messages which show the Orwellian organization in action in the years 1945-1989.
Con Fidel, pase lo que pase , Serbia, 2011, 52 min, Creative, Politics, Society
Sierra Maestra, Cuba, 850 km east of Havana. The day before the celebration of the 52nd anniversary of the Revolution. An old man is repairing a motorcycle a few decades old. A young dentist is trying to find some transport to a clinic in remote mountains, where - among other patients - he is to treat a patient called Vladimir Ilyich Rodriguez. A middle-aged married couple has a public telephone booth in their modest house for villagers who have no phone. The fate of these people and many other inhabitants of Sierra Maestra, are depicted on a day of ideological ecstasy, the day of the celebration of the 52nd anniversary of the Revolution.
The IDFA Competition for Student Documentary offers student films from international film academies that compete for the IDFA Award for Best Student Documentary, worth EUR 2,500. Among the C&E European talents, Aleksandra Likhacheva's haunting portrait Katya Krenalinova will be presented next to two 2011 Silver Eye Award nominees - A Letter to Dad (dir. Srdjan Keca) and Paparazzi (dir. Piotr Bernas) - and Bartosz Kruhlik's The Trip (East Silver 2011).
Pismo tati , Serbia, United Kingdom, 2011, 48 min, Digi Beta, HD, Creative, Personal View, Portrait, Society
"Hey Dad, you died suddenly." The filmmaker, trying to make sense of the way his father chose to die, opens several boxes, all that is left behind. The forgotten photos, letters and home videos take the film back to the 1970s Yugoslavia, when his parents became lovers. But the journey through the years, to family members, lost friends and places, reveals the lingering horrors of the recent Balkan wars still tearing people and families apart. A film that, in the most immediate way, questions the individual responsibility of ordinary people caught in the winds of war.
Poland, 2011, 33 min, Digi Beta, Creative, Current Affairs, Portrait, Society
Following the life of a Polish paparazzo who tracks down the rich and the famous, the film depicts a world in which values are confused and rules are flexible. Yet it also shows that there is always a second chance for us to make our minds up about what kind of people we will be tomorrow.
Wycieczka , Poland, 2010, 13 min, Beta SP, HD, Personal View, Portrait, Youth Documentary
Thirteen-year-old Asia goes on a trip with her grandfather. Grandpa teaches her how to drive a scooter and shows her the beauty of nature. He has got something else to tell her…
In Reflecting Images: Masters, we are pleased to find Motherland or Death, the latest film by Vitaly Manskiy who attended IDF's Industry Programme in Jihlava with a special master class. Manskiy is in the lineup with, for instance, our last year's master class guest Michael Glawogger and his Whores' Glory, and Viktor Kossakovsky's Vivan las antipodas.
IDFA's Panorama is dedicated to current and social issues. Bosnian Rhapsody at the Margins of Science by Vesna Ljubic analyzes the ills of postwar Bosnia and Herzegovina; Bulgarian filmmaker Stefan Valdobrev reassesses one man's identity in My Mate Manchester United. Also in this section, Kyrgyz filmmaker Ulyana Konovalova presents Nomadic; Marta Prus follows two Chechen refugees in Vakha and Magomed, and Alina Rudnitskaya raises some tough questions surrounding abortion in the documentary short I Will Forget This Day, winner of the 2011 Silver Eye Award.
For more details, please visit IDFA's website.