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The 53rd Karlovy Vary IFF announces line-up


Karlovy Vary IFF presents complete competition sections and other films. The competition sections are Official Selection - Competition, East of the West - Competition and Documentary Films - Competition. 

The ten world and two international premieres at this year’s festival include the latest by leading Romanian filmmaker Radu Jude "I Do Not Care If We Go Down In History As Barbarians", an original exploration of the subject of nationality and a nation coming to terms with the traumatic moments of its own past. Respected Argentinian director Ana Katz presents a mixture of subtle melancholy with light humour in her family drama Sueño Florianópolis, and we find a no less complex look at the question of male-female relationships in The Fireflies Are Gone, the story of a rebellious yet charismatic teenager directed by Canadian filmmaker Sébastien Pilote. 

A harrowing performance by actor Caleb Landry Jones dominates Peter Brunner’s dark Austro-American drama To the Night. Two other filmmakers previously recognized at KVIFF present equally original though noticeably more poetic new films: the Russian director of the popular Zoology, Ivan Tverdovsky, presents Jumpman, while Israeli director Joseph Madmony is presenting his third premiere at KVIFF, the subtly moving drama Redemption, co-directed by cinematographer Boaz Y. Yakov.

Domestic cinema will be represented by Olmo Omerzu’s road movie about the force of boyhood friendship Winter Flies and by debut filmmaker Adam Sedlák’s claustrophobic minimalist study of the slow decline of body and mind, Domestique. Other debuts are from the Dominican Republic and Spain (Natalia Cabral and Oriol Estrada’s nuanced story of an adolescent girl, Miriam Lies), Poland (Paweł Maślona’s dark comedy Panic Attack) and Turkey (Ömür Atay’s moving drama Brothers). The selection, which spans a wide range of styles and genres, is rounded out by talented Slovenian director Sonja Prosenc’s poetic tale of female coming-of-age History of Love.


This year’s East of the West competition is dominated by a strong female element, with seven of the twelve films directed by women. One of them is Czech director Beata Parkanová with her debut Moments – a sensitive depiction of the pitfalls of family life. The second Czech film in this section is Tomáš Pavlíček’s comedy Bear with Us. The eleven debut films include Hungarian director László Csuja’s Blossom Valley – an ironic punk road movie about an odd couple on the run, the Iranian film Amir about life in contemporary Iran, or Via Carpatia, the debut film by Polish director Klara Kochańska, winner of a student Oscar, co-directed by Kasper Bajon.


Of the twelve films in documentary competition at the 53rd Karlovy Vary International Film Festival, eight are being shown as world premieres. The latest work by previous Karlovy Vary winner Vitaly Mansky, Putin's Witnesses takes a fascinating look at the presidential career of Vladimir Putin. Also in selection are Bridges of Time, the contemplative documentary essay by Kristīne Briede and famous Lithuanian director Audrius Stonys (which is also a part of the retrospective section Reflections of Time: Baltic Poetic Documentary), Marouan Omara and Johanna Domke’s look at the depopulated Egyptian resort Sharm El Sheikh Dream Away, and Cyril Aris’s sad and lyrical The Swing.



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