The 2011 Karlovy Vary International Film Festival scheduled to open on July 1st – July 9th features a massive list of films competing for the festival grand prix, the Crystal Globe.
The British period drama Jane Eyre will be screened during this 46th Karlovy Vary IFF opening ceremony and will be presented by Dame Judi Dench and will close with a screening of Woody Allen’s Midnight in Paris.
Below are the complete line-up of the official selection for the competition sections.
Director : Cary Fukunaga
The second film from Cary Fukunaga, one of the biggest talents of contemporary film, is an adaptation of Charlotte Brontë’s renowned novel of a young woman looking for love despite her difficult lot in life and the malice of those around her. Excellent acting performances from Mia Wasikowska, Michael Fassbender, and Dame Judi Dench.
OFFICIAL SELECTION – COMPETITION
Beduin / Bedouin / Beduín
Director: Igor Voloshin
Russia, 2011, 90 min, International premiere
A Ukrainian woman named Rita heads for Petersburg to become a well-paid surrogate mother for a gay couple because she needs a large sum of money to pay for her daughter’s leukemia treatments. Igor Voloshin, a highly original Russian filmmaker, once again turns in a surprising effort, this time through a combination of melodrama and a realistic look at modern-day Russia.
Boker Tov, Adon Fidelman / Restoration / Restaurátor
Director: Joseph Madmony
Israel, 2010, 105 min, European premiere
After the death of his business partner, Mr Fidelman’s antique furniture restoration shop finds itself in difficulties; the same could be said about his relationship with his son. The film is a carefully played psychological study about characters in contemporary Israeli society. Is it better to persist with one’s plans, come what may, or might it help to try to understand others?
Cigán / Gypsy / Cigán
Director: Martin Šulík
Slovak Republic, Czech Republic, 2011, 107 min, World premiere
This tale of 14-year-old Adam who, after the death of his father, tries to find his way in life, bears the typical traits of the stories of dozens of adolescent Roma who grew up in the poor settlements of Eastern Slovakia. Adam’s responsibility as new head of the family, which he is prepared to assume at the cost of personal sacrifice, is taken away by a person for whom Adam has no respect. When everything he believed in collapses around him and he is left alone to struggle with evil, he simply cannot find a way out.
Collaborator / Collaborator / Spoluautor
Director: Martin Donovan
Canada, USA, 2010, 86 min, World premiere
Dramatist Robert has things to think about – his plays bear the brunt of heavy criticism and he vacillates in his relations to two women. And then an unexpected event happens which forces him to see things completely differently. In his directorial debut, actor Martin Donovan is joined by fellow thespians David Morse, Olivia Williams, and Melissa Auf der Maur.
Il gioiellino / The Jewel / Malý klenot
Director: Andrea Molaioli
Italy, France, 2010, 110 min, International premiere
The second film by Andrea Molaioli (The Girl by the Lake) is a dramatic reconstruction of a financial scandal involving a major food processing company (inspired by the actual case of the dairy giant Parmalat) run by prominent entrepreneur Rastelli and his trusted accountant Botta (the outstanding Remo Girone and Toni Servillo).
Księstwo / Heritage / Potomek knížat
Director: Andrzej Barański
Poland, 2011, 124 min, International premiere
Since he was young, Zbyszek’s father has been telling him that he can escape from the crippling conditions in the village and strive to attain some kind of harmony. But Zbyszek fails: he’s expelled from law school in the city, and there is no money to be had…. Director Andrzej Barański has brought to the screen one of the most original characters Polish film has created in recent years.
Lollipop Monster / Lollipop Monster / Lollipop Monster
Director: Ziska Riemann
Germany, 2011, 96 min, International premiere
Ari is a Lolita-like blonde, Oona is a taciturn wraith in black. Nevertheless, they share the same problems, living in families that refuse to face reality. And it is just such hypocrisy that drives the girls to seek freedom. Their friendship, however unlikely, is their source of salvation until one of them betrays the other….
Holidays by the Sea / Holidays by the Sea / Prázdniny u moře
Director: Pascal Rabaté
France, 2011, 77 min, International premiere
In this original comedy describing how ordinary people spend their weekend, the stories of a wide range of characters intertwine although not all of them know each other. The incidents are connected by an absence of dialogue: the characters communicate through gestures, without any words. Filmmaker Pascal Rabaté is known in France for his comics, and, as with his second movie, he based his popular, critically-acclaimed first feature, Les petits ruisseaux (2010), on one of his comic books.
No tengas miedo / Don’t Be Afraid / Neměj strach
Director: Montxo Armendáriz
Spain, 2011, 90 min, International premiere
One day, six-year-old Silvia’s carefree childhood comes to an end when she is left at the mercy of her loving father…. Veteran Spanish filmmaker Montxo Armendáriz, whose film Secrets of the Heart was nominated for an Academy Award, returns after a six-year hiatus with a movie on the nausea-inducing topic of child abuse.
Roméo Onze / Romeo Eleven / Romeo 11
Director: Ivan Grbovic
Canada, 2011, 89 min, World premiere
The intimate portrait of a young man struggling to find his footing in life while coping with a physical disability and trying to live up to his father’s expectations. A trail of lies slowly catches up with him as he tries to become Romeo Eleven. This visually compelling and sensitive debut by Ivan Grbovic tells of a young man’s desire to overcome social bias and his own prejudices.
Die Unsichtbare / Crack in the Shell / Neviditelná
Director: Christian Schwochow
Germany, 2011, 113 min, World premiere
The heroine of this psychological drama set in the world of the theater is an introverted, novice actress named Fine, whom, to everyone’s surprise, a renowned director casts in the main role of a student production of Camille. Fine’s new identity, which could not be further from her true self, is at once seductive and dangerous.
Værelse 304 / Room 304 / Pokoj 304
Director: Birgitte Stærmose
Denmark, Croatia, 2011, 88 min, World premiere
Director Birgitte Stærmose’s multi-layered drama takes place over the course of three days in a Copenhagen hotel and revolves around a mysterious gunshot. The director succeeds in skillfully articulating the movie’s visual style in concord with the individual stories of the protagonists, who feel constricted not only by their own lives but also within the closed walls of the hotel.
EAST OF THE WEST – FILMS IN COMPETITION
Belvedere / Belvedere / Belvedere
Director: Ahmed Imamović
Bosnia and Herzegovina, 2010, 90 min, European premiere
A magical drama about the lives of those who survived the 1995 Srebrenica massacre. War widow Ruvejda is living at the Belvedere refugee camp on the edge of town. She patiently waits to find the remains of her family in the mass graves they have unearthed. Combining realism and elements of stylization, the film offers a compelling indictment of events of the recent past.
Generation P / Generation P / Generation P
Director: Victor Ginzburg
Russia, USA, 2011, 112 min, International premiere
An open-handed adaptation of the apparently unfilmable novel by Victor Pelevin about the Pepsi generation, one of whom is Babylen Tatarsky, a tobacconist turned successful PR man who, in Russia’s wild 1990s, lives his dream of the Sumerian goddess Ishtar.
I ně bylo lučše brata / There Was Never a Better Brother / A nebylo lepšího bratra
Director: Murad Ibragimbekov
Azerbaijan, Russia, Bulgaria, 2010, 93 min, World premiere
A story of two, temperamentally different brothers that takes place in the Azerbaijani capital of Baku in the 1970s. While the elder Jalil is more settled, younger Simurg has an adventurous nature. This visually captivating narrative with universal overtones is based on the novel of the same name by the director’s father, Maksud Ibragimbekov.
Jeż Jerzy / George the Hedgehog / Ježek Jiří
Director: Wojtek Wawszczyk, Jakub Tarkowski, Tomasz Leśniak
Poland, 2011, 80 min, European premiere
George the hedgehog, the hero of this satirical animated film, has to do battle with a mad scientist who wants to clone him, and must also contend with the latter’s two pea-brained, skinhead henchmen, who are hot on his heels. As in the cartoon series on which the film is based, the authors use their refreshing and often considerably black sense of humour to take pot shots at the various ills of Polish society.
Kecove / Sneakers / Tenisky
Director: Ivan Vladimirov, Valeri Yordanov
Bulgaria, 2011, 110 min
The lives of six young people intersect during the course of a summer spent on a wild beach on the Black Sea coast. They have all abandoned the city and left their worries behind them. Here in the virginal natural surroundings, they find a temporary paradise and longed-for freedom. This feature-length debut by two young Bulgarian directors is a testimony infused with contagious energy reflecting the authentic statement of a generation.
Marijine / Marija’s Own / Marijiny
Director: Željka Suková
Croatia, 2011, 61 min, European premiere
This documentary musical comedy with elements of kitchen-sink realist drama captures a private party put together by three girls to honour the memory of their deceased Croatian grandmother. Along with friends and neighbours, guests also include an unknown music band (portrayed in the film by the Czech band Midi Lidi).
Marilivit tetri / Salt White / Bílé jako sůl
Director: Ketevan Machavariani
Georgia, 2011, 80 min, World premiere
In a story that unfolds on Georgia’s Black Sea coast, three characters try to change their current lives. Waitress Nana, policeman Niko, and a homeless girl named Sopo are the main characters of a story whose spare camera and dialogue generate unusual tension.
Nic proti ničemu / Nothing Against Nothing / Nic proti ničemu
Director: Petr Marek
Czech Republic, 2011, 98 min, World premiere
Young married couple Radek and Johana are considering adoption. In order to weigh up the possible risks, they gatecrash a meeting of their contemporaries who grew up in adoptive families and contacted each other via internet chat rooms. Where does pretentious tolerance end and buck-passing indifference begin? And what has decent morality got in common with xenophobia? As an ironic reflection that questions how prepared we should be to help each other out, the film offers a sophisticated and poetic take on the grimly authentic style of the Dogme 95 Manifesto.
Pankot ne e mrtov / Punk’s Not Dead / Punk’s Not Dead
Director: Vladimir Blaževski
Macedonia, Serbia, 2011, 104 min, International premiere
Forty-year-old Mirsa has a difficult task ahead of him: to reform his once popular punk band 17 years after they broke up, and appear in concert with them in the Albanian part of Macedonia. A punchy independent road movie by director and screenwriter Vladimir Blaževski about people for whom punk isn’t just music, it’s their whole life.
Raj dlja mamy / Mother’s Paradise / Ráj pro mámu
Director: Aktan Arym Kubat
Kazakhstan, 2010, 76 min, World premiere
The tale of two Kazakh schoolboys whose father left for Russia in search of work and never came back. On her own, their mother is hardly able to cope with her responsibilities as head of the family. Their grandparents provide a certain amount of support, although the relationships aren’t perfect. A social drama which betrays raw poeticism and strong emotion.
Serdca bumerang / Heart’s Boomerang / Srdce jako bumerang
Director: Nikolay Khomeriki
Russia, 2011, 97 min, International premiere
Twenty-three-year-old Kostya works for the Moscow subway as a train driver’s assistant. He goes for a check-up at the doctor’s and is told he has a serious heart condition. Filmed with an emphasis on introspection, this is an intimate portrait of a man who has yet to define his life values.
Viditeľný svet / Visible World / Viditelný svět
Director: Peter Krištúfek
Slovak Republic, 2011, 104 min, World premiere
The film’s lonely protagonist Oliver works as an air traffic controller at Bratislava airport. He lives in the obscurity of a housing estate where he has a view onto his neighbours’ windows. For him the young family opposite represents an ideal of happiness he determines to become a part of. Ivan Trojan takes the lead in this intimate psychological drama
DOCUMENTARY FILMS IN COMPETITION
Arab Attraction / Arab Attraction / Arabská přitažlivost
Director: Andreas Horvath, Monika Muskala
Austria, 2010, 118 min
Barbara Wally, the protagonist of this captivating documentary, was one of Austria’s most outspoken feminists; a few years before retiring, she set out for Yemen where her life underwent a dramatic shift. She fell in love with Khadher, a Yemeni driver 20 years her junior, and became his second wife.
Aš perėjau ugnį, tu buvai su manim / I Walked Through Fire, You Were With Me / Prošel jsem ohněm, tys byl se mnou
Director: Audrius Stonys
Lithuania, 2010, 30 min, International premiere
The latest film by renowned Lithuanian documentarist Audrius Stonys relates the story of Mr Kriauleidziai and his wife, who lost the roof over their heads after fire engulfed their home. The film also demonstrates man’s ability to come to terms with misfortune, not to lose heart, but to start afresh.
The British Guide to Showing Off / The British Guide to Showing Off / Britský průvodce uměním předvádět se
Director: Jes Benstock
United Kingdom, 2011, 90 min, World premiere
Andrew Logan is a key figure of London’s art and fashion scene and, since 1972, also the man and shaker behind the extravaganza “The Alternative Miss World.” In this case, it’s not about beauty standards, but about the ability to effect transformation and about appreciating the virtues of “being different.” Director Jes Benstock pays tribute to Logan’s artistic integrity and freedom of expression, opting for a form of film collage deftly combining animation, documentary footage, and the pure joy of life.
La calma / The Calm / Klid
Director: Fernando Vílchez Rodríguez
Peru, 2010, 20 min
Fernando Vílchez Rodríguez’s unsettling film combines unique shots of a young man being pulled from the rubble after a devastating earthquake, with images of the current situation, where he and the other inhabitants of a small Peruvian town are trying to bring back a sense of normality to their lives.
Claes / Claes / Claes
Director: Martina Carlstedt
Sweden, 2010, 23 min, International premiere
The protagonist of the documentary by Swedish director Martina Carlstedt is pensioner Claes Swandberg who, in the total isolation of his solitary life, has an entirely unfounded fear of stepping outside his flat – his tidy home has become a prison. A minimalistic film portrait which demonstrates what loneliness can do to a person.
Darwin / Darwin / Darwin
Director: Nick Brandestini
Switzerland, 2011, 88 min, European premiere
Swiss director Nick Brandestini’s fascinating documentary, which deservedly won awards at the Big Sky and Sonoma festivals, introduces us to the small inhospitable town of Darwin in California’s Death Valley where a heterogeneous community of 35 individuals survive in total isolation from the surrounding world.
Deklaracja nieśmiertelności / Declaration of Immortality / Deklarace nesmrtelnosti
Director: Marcin Koszałka
Poland, 2010, 30 min
Marcin Koszałka’s film offers a portrait of a legend among Polish rock climbers, Piotr Korczak. Using innovative techniques to develop a multilayered film language, the director presents a disturbing portrait of a professional climber’s solitary struggle with ageing and mortality.
Detroit ville sauvage / Detroit Wild City / Detroit, divoké město
Director: Florent Tillon
France, 2010, 80 min
Derelict houses lining empty streets in the centre of town, abandoned by more than half the population, where you’re more likely to come across pitbulls than cars – welcome to modern-day Detroit. Yet in the past Detroit was a proud city, as captured in the archive footage in this spellbinding documentary by French director Florent Tillon.
Det gode liv / The Good Life / Dobrý život
Director: Eva Mulvad
Denmark, 2010, 87 min
Award-winning documentarist Eva Mulvad follows the desperate situation of two former Danish millionaires eking out a living in the Portuguese town of Cascais. This compelling por-trait of the complex coexistence of a mother and daughter who fell from the heights of luxury to the very depths, eloquently shows the way in which life trifles with people’s destinies.
Kokvinnorna / Women with Cows / Ženy s kravami
Director: Peter Gerdehag
Sweden, Finland, Norway, 2011, 93 min, International premiere
Respected Swedish photographer and documentarist Peter Gerdehag observes two sisters over a period of time, both almost eighty years of age and with a completely different approach to coming to terms with the family inheritance: a dozen cows. Their touching portrait is enhanced by a gentle soundtrack and exquisite visual treatment.
Koniec Rosji / At the Edge of Russia / Na konci Ruska
Director: Michał Marczak
Poland, 2010, 72 min
Young Polish documentarist Michał Marczak’s directorial debut takes us to the very edge of northern Russia. There, not far from the icy Arctic Ocean, in a place hundreds of kilometers from the nearest residence, one of the last border stations still operates under the supervision of five veteran soldiers and a rookie.
Natascha / Natasha / Nataša
Director: Anja Strelets
Germany, 2010, 9 min, International premiere
An experimental documentary by Anja Strelets which introduces us to 8-year-old Natasha who is growing up in a rundown settlement in one of the most desolate corners of Russia. In its imaginative visual composition, the film superbly combines the girl’s narrative with black-and-white photographs and poetic, dream-like sequences.
The Other F Word / The Other F Word / F jako fotři
Director: Andrea Blaugrund Nevins
USA, 2011, 99 min, International premiere
Award-winning documentarist Andrea Blaugrund Nevins decided to find out how a convention-defying, anti-authoritarian punk rocker is able to transform himself into a responsible father. This dynamic piece offers a thorough excursus into the wild American punk scene and the state of fatherhood as experienced by members of bands such as NOFX, Bad Religion, Rancid, US Bombs and Black Flag.
Pitkä mies / A Tall Man / Vysoký muž
Director: Jani Peltonen
Finland, 2010, 19 min
Director Jani Peltonen uses unique archive footage to present the case of Väinö Myllyrinne, a 2.5-metre-tall giant from Käpylä and Finland’s first international celebrity. The film also points to human obsession with anything that deviates in any way from the norm.
Pod sluncem tma / Solar Eclipse / Pod sluncem tma
Director: Martin Mareček
Czech Republic, 2011, 81 min, World premiere
The latest film by successful Czech documentarist Martin Mareček uses the case of two Czech electricians helping out in a Zambian village to present an exemplary study of the various drawbacks of providing aid to developing countries, while wonderfully illustrating the disparities in culture, thought and behaviour between Africans and Europeans.
Proti ili / Raw Material / Sběrači
Director: Christos Karakepelis
Greece, 2011, 78 min, International premiere
Director Christos Karakepelis spent six years making this film and now offers the viewer an utterly authentic perspective on the lives of a diverse community of scrap metal collectors who inhabit one of the most poverty-stricken districts in Athens.
FORUM OF INDEPENDENTS
El alma de las moscas / The Soul of Flies / Duše mouchy
Director: Jonathan Cenzual Burley
Spain, 2011, 80 min, World premiere
An imaginative, magically poetic story of two brothers who were unaware of each other’s existence and who never knew their father until a letter arrives from him inviting them to his funeral…. A perfect example of an independent writer-director film with superb music by Tim Waters and original songs from Andrea Calabrese.
Hij / He / On
Director: Sasha Matijević
Netherlands, Serbia, 2011, 70 min, European premiere
Thirty-year-old Tony works as a television reporter and has broken up with his partner. While shooting a new story, he encounters a mysterious homeless man who becomes his spiritual guide. The charismatic Amir shows Tony that reality isn’t limited to what happens in our immediate surroundings.
I Think It’s Raining / I Think It’s Raining / Myslím, že prší
Director: Joshua Moore
USA, 2011, 92 min, World premiere
Renata is a freethinking twentysomething who doesn’t really know what she wants. Her wanderings around San Francisco just seem like part of a greater desire for endless escape. This untraditional relationship drama is California filmmaker Joshua Moore’s debut, inspired by the French New Wave and the films of John Cassavetes.
Ish li’lo cellularit / Man Without a Cell Phone / Muž bez mobilu
Director: Sameh Zoabi
France, Palestine, Israel, Belgium, Qatar, 2010, 80 min, European premiere
Jawdat is 20 years old and he was born in a small Palestinian town transferred to Israeli control relatively recently. Bickering between the original inhabitants and the Israeli administration is the order of the day. For instance, Jawdat’s conservative dad is convinced that the new cell phone transmitter is damaging his olive harvest…. This tragicomedy about a young man who can’t wait to flee the family nest is the autobiographical debut of Sameh Zoabi.
Kanske i morgon / Maybe Tomorrow / Možná zítra
Director: Mariken Halle
Sweden, Norway, 2011, 97 min
Mariken Halle chose to shoot a school film about how chance passersby would imagine a movie that they would want to star in. A lighthearted school exercise ends as a disturbing mystery with a Lynch-esque open ending…. This noteworthy debut offers a sophisticated contemplation of the ways to transcend the border between documentary reality and fiction. It makes use of both passersby and professional actors.
Mad Bastards / Mad Bastards / Návrat ztraceného otce
Director: Brendan Fletcher
Australia, 2010, 96 min, European premiere
Native Australian TJ decides to abandon his disordered life in the big city and to hitchhike across Australia to find the adolescent son he’s never met and the boy’s estranged mother. Offering a strong narrative about the return of a lost father, Brendan Fletcher’s debut draws strength from the authenticity of nonactors in the lead roles, the gorgeous Australian landscape, and the music of the folk/rock group Pigram Brothers.
The Pier / The Pier / Molo
Director: Gerard Hurley
Ireland, USA, 2011, 83 min, World premiere
This subtle, low-budget drama focuses on reconciling oneself with the past and accepting an unavoidable conclusion. Director Gerard Hurley returns to his native Irish countryside where his protagonist Jack tries to reconnect with his irascible father after 20 years of not speaking to each other.
Stranger Things / Stranger Things / Podivnější věci
Director: Eleanor Burke, Ron Eyal
USA, United Kingdom, 2010, 77 min, International premiere
Oona, whose mother has died recently, decides to offer shelter to a taciturn homeless man named Mani. A fragile and surprising relationship grows between the pair that may lead them in unexpected directions.
Sunflower Hour / Sunflower Hour / Sunflower Hour
Director: Aaron Houston
Canada, 2011, 85 min, World premiere
This mockumentary follows four puppeteers competing for a spot on the children’s television program “Sunflower Hour”. Infectious humor, eccentric characters, and blatant exaggeration in a movie that posits a clear thesis: certain people should not be allowed to entertain and educate our children.
Tayeb, khalas, yalla / Ok, Enough, Goodbye / O.k., dost a sbohem
Director: Rania Attieh, Daniel Garcia
Lebanon, United Arab Emirates, 2011, 95 min, European premiere
The protagonist of this documentary-style tragicomedy is the 40-something owner of a small sweet shop in the suburbs of Tripoli, who finds it hard to become independent from his elderly mother. When his mom unexpectedly leaves one day, he discovers that living alone is not nearly as interesting as he had imagined. What can he do to bring new meaning into his life?
Wangliang de lixiang / Wangliang’s Ideal / Wangliangův ideál
Director: Xiongjie Gao
China, 2010, 119 min, European premiere
Although butcher Wang Liang has been living with his wife Li Qiao for several months they have yet to consummate their marriage. Young Li Qiao is more interested in her university entrance exam than in having sex. A film about two ordinary people’s unfulfilled ideals set against the backdrop of China’s headlong urbanization, which promises more than it can deliver.
Weekend / Weekend / Víkend
Director: Andrew Haigh
United Kingdom, 2011, 96 min, European premiere
It all started in a gay bar as a one-night stand. But despite their morning hangover, neither Russell nor Glen is able to say goodbye, and the weekend they spend together talking, smoking grass, and having sex may be the beginning of something important to both of them. It is a time of self-discovery that may even lead to transformation
Midnight In Paris
Director: Woody Allen
In Woody Allen’s new romantic comedy, a young American couple discovers what they can expect from life after spending a short vacation in Paris. The American filmmaker expresses his love for a city that he considers, after New York, the most beautiful in the world. “I wanted to show the city emotionally, the way I felt about it,” said the director of a film that humorously relativizes our longing for a “golden past.”
President of Jury:
István Szabó – director (Hungary)
Vladimír Balko – director (Slovakia)
Michel Ciment – film critic (France)
Michel Demopoulos – film critic, festival organizer (Greece)
Edna Fainaru – film critic (Israel)
Sibel Kekilli – actress (Germany)
Pavel Strnad – producer (Czech Republic)
DOCUMENTARY FILM JURY
Amir Bar-Lev – director (USA)
Pietro Marcello – director (Italy)
Freddy Olsson – producer, festival programmer (Sweden)
Harri Römpötti – film critic (Finland)
Andrea Slováková – director , film critic and lecturer (Czech Republic)
EAST OF THE WEST JURY
Rossitsa Valkanova – producer (Bulgary)
Sitora Alieva – festival organizer (Russia)
Stefan Arsenijević – director (Serbia)
Matthieu Darras – film critic and festival programmer (France)
Lukasz Dzieciol – producer (Poland)
INDEPENDENT CAMERA JURY
Margaret Corkery – director (Ireland)
Tine Klint – sales (Denmark)
Michael Málek – editor, Czech Television (Czech Republic)