31 August 2020

Ammonite



Francis Lee : 2020

A raw love story between a solitary palaeontologist and a wealthy, grieving wife in 19th century Dorset. In 1840s England, acclaimed but overlooked fossil hunter Mary Anning works alone on the rugged Dorset coast. With the days of her famed discoveries behind her, she now searches for common fossils to sell to tourists to support herself and her ailing mother. When a wealthy visitor entrusts Mary with the care of his wife Charlotte Murchison, she cannot afford to turn his offer down. Proud and relentlessly passionate about her work, Mary initially clashes with her unwelcome guest, but despite the distance between their social class and personalities, an intense bond begins to develop, compelling the two women to determine the true nature of their relationship. Francis Lee's second feature premiered in the Gala Presentations at Toronto International Film Festival 2020.

29 August 2020

I Am Greta



Nathan Grossman : 2020

In August of 2018, Greta Thunberg, a 15-year-old student in Sweden, starts a school strike for the climate. Her question for adults: if you don't care about her future on Earth, why should she care about her future in school? Within months, her strike evolves into a global movement. Greta, a quiet Swedish girl on the autism spectrum, is now one of the world's most recognisable activists. The team behind Greta has been following the young activist from her very first day of school strike. Their film perceives the world as she does, creating a story about her world. Nathan Grossman's documentary premiered out of competition at Venice International Film Festival 2020.

25 August 2020

Once Upon a Youth



Ivan Ramljak : 2020
O jednoj mladosti

Thirteen years after the unexpected death of his one time best friend, Croatian filmmaker Ivan Ramljak tries to reconstruct his life and their relationship, using just the photographs and video materials which his friend shot back then. Consisting entirely of still images and videos it is the story of Marko Čaklović who died under tragic and never completely resolved circumstances in 2006. A film about the lost generation of inspired and dynamic young people at the end of the 1990s, who are trying to find their identity and an escape from a country in the aftermath of a devastating war. Ivan Ramljak's first feature-length documentary was winner of the Balkan Doc award at DokuFest 2020.

23 August 2020

Laila in Haifa



Amos Gitai : 2020
A Night in Haifa

Over the course of one fateful night, we witness the interweaving stories of five women through a series of encounters and situations, defying all categories and labels in their relationships and personal identities. A sensitive and distinctly humanist reflection of life in the region. With an ensemble cast of both Israeli and Palestinian actors, the film presents a candid snapshot of contemporary life in one of the last remaining spaces where Israelis and Palestinians come together to engage in face-to-face relationships. Amos Gitai's feature premiered in competition at Venice International Film Festival 2020.

19 August 2020

Cigare au miel



Kamir Aïnouz : 2020
Honey Cigar

Paris, 1993. Selma, 17, lives in a bourgeois and secular Berber family. When she meets and is strongly attracted to Julien, a dashing young man, she realises for the first time the heavy rules of her patriarchal family and how they affect her intimacy. As Islamism takes over her country of origin and her family crumbles, Selma discovers the power of her own desire. She must resist and fight. Through the strength of her people, she starts walking down the path of what it means to become a free woman. Kamir Aïnouz's directorial debut premiered in competition at Venice Days 2020.

31 July 2020

The Book of Vision



Carlo Hintermann : 2020

Eva, a promising young doctor, leaves her brilliant career to study History of Medicine in a remote university. Now is the time for her to call everything into question: her nature, her body, her illness, and her sealed fate. Johan Anmuth is an 18th century Prussian physician in perpetual conflict between the rise of rationalism and ancient forms of animism. "Book of Vision" is a manuscript that sweeps these two existences up, blending them into a never-ending vortex. Far from a proper scientific text, the Book contains the hopes, fears, and dreams of more than 1800 patients. The patients' spirits still wander through the pages. The book hides a mystery. Life and death are both part of a continuous flow. Nothing expires in its time. Only what you desire is real, not merely what happens. Carlo Hintermann's first fiction feature premiered as the opening film at Venice International Film Critics' Week 2020.

25 July 2020

Nightwalk



Małgorzata Szumowska : 2020

It's nighttime in Warsaw, Poland. Two very different homes. In one, a father is slovenly stretched out on a sofa, watching sports, expecting his son to be everything he is. In another apartment, all clean modern, an affluent mother sits to have dinner with her daughter, who isn't like her at all. Simultaneously, both the boy and the girl embark on a night journey of transformation, where they shed their inherited gender layers. The city streets become a catwalk of liberation. When they meet, by chance – face-to-face, body-to-body – they wordlessly mirror each other with comfort and assurance. The nineteenth commission from designer Miu Miu as part of "Women's Tales", a series of short films by women who critically celebrate femininity in the 21st century. Małgorzata Szumowska's film screened at Venice Days 2020.

24 July 2020

Lacci



Daniele Luchetti : 2020
The Ties

Naples, early 1980s. The marriage between Aldo and Vanda begins to break down when Aldo falls in love with young Lidia. Thirty years later, Aldo and Vanda are still married. A mystery about feelings, a story of loyalty and faithlessness, of resentment and shame. Betrayal, pain, a secret box, a home laid waste, a cat, the voice of people in love and that of people out of love. Adapted from the novel by Domenico Starnone, Daniele Luchetti's feature premiered out of competition as the opening film at Venice International Film Festival 2020.

17 July 2020

Don't Forget to Breathe



Martin Turk : 2019
Ne pozabi dihati

Fifteen-year-old Klemen lives with his elder brother Peter and single mother in a small and remote rural town. He adores his brother, so when his well-established routine of spending time with his beloved brother on the tennis court and by the nearby river gets interrupted by Peter's sudden and passionate love affair with beautiful Sonja, their relationship causes a whirlwind of conflicting emotions for Klemen. Angry at Sonja for pulling Peter away from him, Klemen also cannot resist the attraction he feels for her. Confused by his feelings, he starts behaving erratically. Martin Turk's third feature premiered in competition in the Alice nella Città section at Rome Film Festival 2019, and screened in competition in the Croatian Programme at Pula Film Festival 2020.

9 July 2020

Where the Road Leads



Matīss Kaža : 2020
Kur vedis cels

The story of Eva, a sixteen-year-old aristocrat who goes missing from the Baron's manor on the day of her arranged wedding. When the Baron's head servant, Magda, is found murdered in the manor's stables, an investigation starts where everyone is a suspect. The Baron's henchmen, local law enforcement and other involved parties set out to find the girl who has chosen to set her own destiny in a time of great social imbalance. But Eva will do everything it takes to secure her freedom.

30 June 2020

Love Affair(s)



Emmanuel Mouret : 2020
Les choses qu'on dit, les choses qu'on fait

Vacations in the French countryside. Daphne, three months pregnant, finds herself alone to welcome Maxime, her boyfriend François' cousin. François had to leave in a hurry for Paris to cover for a sick colleague. For four days, while waiting for his return, Daphne and Maxime get to know each other and share very intimate stories that bring them closer. A contemporary star-crossed love affair, where no partner is more at fault than the other. Multiple love triangles seen with authenticity, elegance and compassion. Emmanuel Mouret's feature premiered in the Marché du Film event as part of the Official Selection at Festival de Cannes 2020.

26 June 2020

Under the Skin



Robin Harsch : 2019
Sous la peau

Three transgender teenagers, Soän, Effie Alexandra and Logan take the long path of physical transformation to finally arrive at their perceived gender identity, supported by parents and counsellors. They undergo radical physical changes caused by hormone therapy and surgery. This is the external metamorphosis that finally brings their appearance into line with their long-felt gender identity. Behind them lie desperate years in which they had to struggle not only with themselves but also with their family and school environments. This continuous experience of rejection and harassment has made them vulnerable. They long for the day when they don't have to explain themselves all the time. Robin Harsch's documentary premiered in the Next Masters Competition at DOK Leipzig 2019.

24 June 2020

In the Dusk



Šarūnas Bartas : 2020
Sutemose

Lithuania, 1948. The war is over, but the country is left in ruins. Untė is 19 years old and is a member of the Partisan movement resisting Soviet occupation. They do not fight on equal terms, but it is on this desperate struggle that the future of an entire people depends. At the age of discovery of life, Untė will also discover violence and treachery. The lines are blurred between the burning passion of his own youth and the cause for which he is fighting. He will invest himself wholeheartedly, even if it means losing his innocence and his life. Šarūnas Bartas's feature premiered in the Marché du Film event as part of the Official Selection at Festival de Cannes 2020.

22 June 2020

Spring Blossom



Suzanne Lindon : 2020
16 Printemps

Suzanne is sixteen. People her own age bore her. Every day on her way to high school, she passes a theatre. There, she meets an older man, who becomes obsessed with her. Despite their age difference, they find in each other an answer to their ennui and fall in love. But Suzanne is afraid she's missing out on life – that life of a 16-year-old, which she had struggled so much to enjoy in the same way as her peers. Suzanne Lindon's feature debut premiered in the Marché du Film event as part of the Official Selection at Festival de Cannes 2020.

6 June 2020

Inga



Dato Abramishvili & Giorgi Gogichaishvili : 2020

Inga is my name. I've just turned 18. Which means I have no right to stay at the orphanage any longer. This is the law. I've married a man whom I'd never met before. This is my choice. My husband appears to be mentally disabled. I stay with him. This is love. We live with my husband's relatives. This is family. Worst thing about this family is to be female in this family. In this country. In this world. But I'm not just female. I'm an 18-year-old woman named Inga. Raised in an orphanage, at eighteen years old Inga is in danger of becoming homeless. As she has no idea how to live outside by herself and cannot thus risk her life being independent in society, she takes the offer from the orphanage director to marry an autistic man from a male-dominated family whom she sees for the first time on their wedding day. Inga can't imagine that the house where she will move to is controlled by strictly defined rules which destroy everyone who decides to rise against this family system.

4 June 2020

La nova escola



Ventura Durall : 2020

What is the purpose of school today? This question led to an educational revolution launched by the Escola Nova 21 programme. "Lessons for a new school" (La Nova Escola) follows the programme, which is based on the learning of skills and which has generated an educational revolution in Catalonia, during the three years of its existence. Observing the phenomenon from the perspective of our species and analysing its historical and scientific context by listening to the most qualified voices in science, the film delves into the adventure of its promoters and those who have been at the heart of this experiment when the new methods were implemented. Can an education system be successfully changed from the bottom up? Only time will tell, but the seed for rethinking the education of the citizens of the future has come to stay. And it is unstoppable. Ventura Durall's documentary premiered at DocsBarcelona 2020.

1 June 2020

The Castle



Lina Lužytė : 2020
Pilis

Monika, a thirteen-year-old Lithuanian girl, arrives in Dublin. She is a passionate singer who has come along with her mother Jolanta, once a professional pianist, who had to take a job in a local fish factory alongside many others in the neighbourhood. They are accompanied by her grandmother who suffers from dementia and requires 24/7 care. Monika dreams of becoming a famous musician and sees a concert taking place at The Castle as a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity. Jolanta is sceptical and reluctant to support her daughter's dreams, and so she sells their keyboard and forbids Monika from attending the concert. Nevertheless, her decision does not stop Monika, who cooks up a scheme involving the grandmother to get €100 in order to hire the keyboard.

23 May 2020

Bergman Island



Mia Hansen-Løve : 2020

An American filmmaking couple, Chris and Tony retreat to the mythical Fårö island for the summer to each write screenplays for their upcoming films. In this wild, breathtaking landscape where Ingmar Bergman lived and shot his most celebrated pieces, they hope to find inspiration for their next features. As days spent separately pass by, the fascination for the island operates on Chris and souvenirs of her first love resurface. As the summer and their screenplays advance, the lines between reality and fiction will then progressively blur against the backdrop of Fårö's wild landscape and tear the couple even more apart.

15 May 2020

Le Grand Viveur



Perla Sardella : 2020

Mario Lorenzini is a mystery of cinema. Dying suddenly, he left behind him an unprecedented and secret cinematographic body of work, filmed in Super 8, chronicling the daily life of an Italian village. He was a farmer, a hunter, and a film buff. He lived in Rimasco, a small community in the Piedmont mountains. At the end of the 1960s, Lorenzini bought a Super 8 camera and became an amateur filmmaker. A man of passion, a great pleasure-seeker, he then dedicated himself to filmmaking. He filmed the day to day of mountain-dwelling life, his neighbours, the slaughter of pigs, the passing of the seasons, and the scenery of a territory that subtly changes with every take. Perla Sardella's documentary of Lorenzini's archives premiered in competition at Visions du Réel 2020.

11 May 2020

Sisters with Transistors



Lisa Rovner : 2020

Think of early electronic music and you'll likely see men pushing buttons, knobs, and boundaries. While electronic music is often perceived as a boys club, the truth is from the very beginning women have been integral in inventing the devices, techniques and tropes that would define the shape of sound for years to come. As one of the film's subjects, Laurie Spiegel explains: "We women were especially drawn to electronic music when the possibility of a woman composing was in itself controversial. Electronics let us make music that could be heard by others without having to be taken seriously by the male-dominated establishment." Sisters with Transistors is more than just the history of a music genre: it's the story of how we hear and the critical but little-known role female pioneers play in that story. With the wider social, political and cultural context of the 20th century as a backdrop, this all archival documentary reveals a unique emancipation struggle, restoring the central role of women in the history of music and society at large. Lisa Rovner's documentary was selected to premiere at SXSW 2020.