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2 | CONTENTS

INTRODUCTION

6

RIGA IFF OFFICIAL COMPETITION

9

SONORA BROKA. CROSSING THE BORDERS

RIGA IFF SELECTION DAIRA ĀBOLIŅA. EUROPEAN FILM. A NEW CENTURY

RIGA IFF RETROSPECTIVE. IN KINO VERITAS

11

22 23

35

SANITA GRĪNA. THE CONSTRUCTION OF REALITY

37

DĀVIS SĪMANIS. SYMPHONY OF THE DON BASIN

38

NORDIC FILM SELECTION. NORTHERN HIGHLIGHTS

44

NORDIC FILMS FOR CHILDREN. KIDS WEEKEND

57

ANIMATION WORKSHOPS

NORDIC FILMS FOR YOUTH. #YOUTH_MATTERS! LIENE LINDE. THE LOST INNOCENCE

65

66 67


CONTENTS | 3

SHORT RIGA

73

INTERNATIONAL SHORT FILM COMPETITION

73

BALTIC STUDENT FILM COMPETITION

86

BALTIC MUSIC VIDEO COMPETITION

90

SHORT RIGA EVENTS

92

ARTDOCFEST/RIGA VITALY MANSKIY. ARTDOCFEST IN RIGA

LIELAIS KRISTAPS. SELECTION

94 95

106

KRISTĪNE MATĪSA. ON THE MOVE

107

IEVA ROMANOVA. MIKS ZVIRBULIS

119

RIGA IFF SPECIAL SCREENING. FOUR WHITE SHIRTS

122

RIGA IFF SPECIAL EVENTS ZIGMĀRS JAUJA. IN SEARCH OF CINEMAS LOST

123 125

STUDENT FILMS OF THE LATVIAN ACADEMY OF CULTURE. AFTER HOURS 127

INDEX

INGRID BERGMAN – 100. ZANE DZENE. THE FATEFUL ROLE

129

INGRID BERGMAN – 100. INTERMEZZO

131

THE SECRETS OF NORDIC NOIR

132

WORKSHOP ON MARKETING AND DISTRIBUTION OF EUROPEAN FILMS

134

EUROPEAN SCRIPT MEETING

135 136


4 | RIGA IFF TEAM

AIJA BĒRZIŅA

President

SONORA BROKA

Artistic Director

LIENE TREIMANE

Managing Director

ELVISS ZANTS

Communication and Image

KRISTĪNE SIMSONE

Curator, Kids Weekend and #Youth_Matters!

ANNA VEILANDE-KUSTIKOVA

SHORT RIGA Artistic Director, Curator

AGNESE LOGINA

SHORT RIGA Executive Director, Curator

VITALY MANSKIY

President of the Russian documentary film festival ARTDOCFEST

IEVA ROMANOVA

Member of Board, Latvian Filmmakers’ Union

ZANE DZENE

Media and Public Relations

MĀRTIŅŠ ŠMITS

Technical Director

LIENE HAPANIONEKA

Print Traffic Coordinator

AIJA BIEZAITE

Head of Translation Department

AMANDA BOKA

EUROPEAN SCRIPT MEETING General Manager

ANETE FREIBERGA

Event Coordinator

VIKTORIJA KASPEROVIČA

SHORT RIGA Baltic Student Film Competition Coordinator

MĀRTIŅŠ MIĶELSONS

Head of Guest Services

JANA PAKALNA

Guest Services Assistant

KASPARS KONDRATJUKS

Head of Accreditation Services

SANTA TIVAŅENKOVA

Official Competition Jury Coordinator

RENĀTE BĀLIŅA

ARTDOCFEST Guest Coordinator

ANNIJA KORPA

European Script Meeting Guest Coordinator

PATRĪCIJA KRAUZE

European Script Meeting Guest Coordinator

DACE LĪDUMNIECE

Animation Workshops Coordinator


THANKS | 5

THANKS GAĻINA AIZVAKARA, GUNTA APSE, EDGARS ARNĪTIS, SIGNE ĀBOLA, DAIRA ĀBOLIŅA, ZANE BALČUS, INETA BALULE, KASPARS BEĶERIS, JANA BĒRZIŅA, MARTA BITE, DŽINA BRIŠKA, ELĪNA CIRE, SIMON DREWSEN-HOLMBERG, ALVIS HERMANIS, IEVA HERMANSONE, JAN ERIK HOLST, ZIGMĀRS JAUJA, JĀNIS KALVE, ANDRIS KANGERIS, KRISTS KONDRĀTS, GIEDRĖ KRIKŠČIŪNAITĖ, PĒTERIS KRILOVS, KASPARS KURSIŠS, MĀRA LAZDĀNE-AVOTA, ARTŪRS LIEPIŅŠ, MAIJA LĪNE, ALEKSANDRS MAMONTOVS, KRISTĪNE MATĪSA, LAIMA MINCENOFA, SERGEJS MUSATOVS, LELDA OZOLA, DITA RIETUMA, MARTA ROMANOVA-JĒKABSONE, INĀRA RUBENE, INITA SAULĪTE-ZANDERE, REINIS SEMĒVICS, DĀVIS SĪMANIS, STĪNA SKULME, GUNA STAHOVSKA, SANDRA ŠTEINA, SERGEJS TIMOŅINS, GINTA TROPA, IEVA VALTERE, VINETA VERIKA, SANDIS VOLDIŅŠ, AGNESE ZAPĀNE, AGNESE ZATERMANE, AGNESE ZELTIŅA, LAURA ZIEMELE A special thanks to all our volunteers – without you the festival would not be possible!

RIGA IFF catalogue team Editor-in-chief SANITA GRĪNA Translation ANDRIS KUPRIŠS Design ELVISS ZANTS Layout KASPARS VĒVERIS Cover photo by DARO SULAKAURI


6 | INTRODUCTION

A film festival is not just a celebration, but also a unique meeting place for films, authors and viewers. This can become a powerful experience after seeing a great movie, or a debate about what one saw; or, even better, when likeminded people come together, it can result in a new film. The Riga IFF team has spent another year making this city an important centre for the film industry not only on local but on international scale as well. It is possible, we are sure of that. We are also sure that a film cannot exist without its viewer. We believe that a developed and thinking society cannot grow without cinema – a tool that is so sensitive to its environment, emotional, analytic and powerful. The festival plays a crucial role in encouraging this growth, i.e. distinguishing from thousands of films made every year and delivering them to viewers, allowing them to see and understand the evolution of film and grow along with it. Only then we can establish a connection with the viewer and get rid of one particularly absurd stereotype: that festival films do not go well with what the public needs. Everything is much simpler – it is films like these that can be as close to the public as they are to their authors, facilitating a mutual understanding and a healthy debate. That is why these ten festival days are going to be a feast brought about with much creative effort; it is a platform for discussion; it means screenings of the best European films. Whether you are an industry insider, an experienced connoisseur, or anyone who wants to experience something unforgettably beautiful, you are welcome here where a film becomes an event. AIJA BĒRZIŅA President of the Riga International Film Festival


For musicians, a second album is always a challenge, unavoidably bringing along a load of pressure from the public. Have they realized all the ideas from their first record? Will they follow the conceptual thread? Is this going to be an experiment? If we follow the comparison, the second release of Riga IFF is in a much more privileged position; at least from the perspective of programming. Riga IFF 2014, without doubt, gained a lot from the presence of the European Academy award and the stardust it brought with it. This year we had little time to hesitate and so we took a good look around, with an honest, playfully cinematographic interest. It was only logical that the spirit of the European film had not left Riga immediately. Drawing our inspiration from it, we designed two programs – the Riga IFF Selection and, for the first time this year, also an International Competition, which, however, we still wanted to keep narrow enough to include only the films from the Baltic region. Other than that, Riga IFF does not avoid being playful with words, naming one of the programs In Kino Veritas. This year’s selection testifies to our respect for the film heritage, film divas, and film history, which occasionally (this is a reference to cinéma vérité) is much more youthful than the non-history. My everyday and, I will not deny it, almost every night, is spent under the sign of Riga IFF. When I say ‘cinema’, I think ‘the festival’. The last, the current, and already the next one is beginning to take shape. This year’s programme is set; the festival’s guests confirm their arrivals; the festival’s office feels like a beehive. Another moment and we will meet everyone in cinemas. These are the moments when, more than ever, I realize that cinema is not selfsufficient. Cinema is born out of the interaction with the viewer. Before this happens, it is just a train of static pictures, made with a certain skill, talent, and effort. The magic of film is revealed by the fact that even when we all watch the same movie, in the end we each see something else. The air of the auditorium comes to life; it fills with thought and emotion; hypnotized by this, we return there again and again. SONORA BROKA Artistic Director of the Riga International Film Festival

PHOTO: AGNESE ZELTIŅA

INTRODUCTION | 7


PHOTO: JĀNIS DEINATS

8 | INTRODUCTION

“Now more than ever we need to talk to each other, to listen to each other and understand how we see the world, and cinema is the best medium for doing this,” said the great film director Martin Scorsese. In these fast changing times I find myself agreeing with him in this thought. Culture can influence and alter the opinions, interests, lifestyle, and often a good movie can do much more than a big conference or a discussion with experts. Cinema can make us interested in topics that we considered alien to us, it can educate and entertain, it moves and changes us – hopefully, for the better. Interest precedes understanding, and understanding leads to respect and compassion that we sometimes so desperately need in our everyday life. The Riga International Film Festival offers great films for almost any taste: for the very youngest viewers and for experienced cinema gourmands, for lovers of the classics and those seeking new treasures, for the short-distance runners and movie marathoners – to everybody who loves cinema or are just making the first steps on their path towards it. I wish to every festivalgoer to find a new topic for an insightful conversation, because, as the title of the retrospective programme of this year’s festival knowingly suggests, – In kino veritas! DACE MELBĀRDE, The Minister for Culture Today, film festivals have become an extremely important exhibition platform for European cinema; only thanks to festivals films that are deemed ‘non-commercial’ and otherwise would not have a slightest chance for screening in many countries, including Latvia, reach the audiences there. Festivals allow to appreciate films not only in their commercial aspect, which tethers the spirit, mind and senses, but as an art and creative experiment. The presence of a thriving festival and a loyal audience is substantial for a healthy cultural environment, and Riga and Latvia needs their own solid, thoroughly built festival that would offer a professionally curated, convincing film programme and secure its place in the international festival circuit. Riga has a rich history of great film festivals; unfortunately the tradition had been broken, but the Riga International Film Festival, happening for the second time, is in the perfect position to gain gravitas and become a significant event in the lives both of Latvian cinemagoers and international audiences. It is confirmed by the energetic last year’s start and, likewise, by this year’s diverse film and event programme. I wish success to this and all subsequent editions of the Riga International Film Festival, and may the festival find its place among others in the rather fierce competition of the international film festivals! DITA RIETUMA, Director of the National Film Centre of Latvia


RIGA IFF OFFIICIAL COMPETITION


“FROM ITS VERY BEGINNING, CINEMA TENDED TO CROSS BORDERS”


RIGA IFF OFFICIAL COMPETITION | 11

CROSSING THE BORDERS

SONORA BROKA

In a way, it was a crazy decision to establish an international competition in the second year of the festival. But crazy decisions are often the best ones. Keeping that in mind, we prepared the festival and this year’s competition programme. For this, we had two criteria: a film had to come from the Baltic Sea region, while the genre limits were completely open: it could be a feature, a documentary, an animation, or all of the above. We see the regional principle more of an advantage than a limitation. It is a challenge for the curators of the programme, as well as the jury, to seek out the common as well as the distinct. Whereas the genre criteria came from things we notice every day: from its very beginning, cinema tended to cross borders; in the last decade the tendency to bring down the border between documenting reality and playing it out has become so very distinct that we can almost speak of a separate movement. And not just speak: the terms like mocumentary or postdoc show that it is also a process of thinking as well as writing. In the context of the Baltics, an important role, obviously, is played by the great tradition of documentary film and animation. Let us not be afraid of mentioning an experiment – it is just the grounds for opening the door to a debate. A debate on the evolution of the cinematic language, its variations and, possibly, regression. A debate on the transformation of means of expression and the role of authorship. Is Sergei Loznitsa’s “The Event” a documentary? Is “The Magic Mountain” an animation? The competition also features one of the pioneers of mocumentary, Aleksei Fedorchenko’s “Angels of Revolution”. Does the form overshadow the content; is the viewer ready for such a twist, knowing how simple is the formula in much of what we see on TV and in cinemas? Does this mean the auteur will migrate from movie theatres to art galleries? The competition was designed to balance vivid authorship with abovementioned queries, which of course are not exclusive of each other. After watching films from the Baltic region, I dare to say that we can speak of a uniting aesthetics, which distinguishes us from the Mediterranean, the Balkans, or from Eastern Europe. “Rams”, “The Summer of Sangaile”, “Out of Nature”, and, of course, Šarunas Bartas’ “Peace to Us in Our Dreams” are vivid examples. The Riga IFF competition provides an opportunity to recognize this distinction.


12 | RIGA IFF OFFICIAL COMPETITION

RIGA IFF INTERNATIONAL COMPETITION JURY

JĀNIS PUTNIŅŠ (LATVIA) Film director and a cinephile with a private collection consisting of several thousand movies, cosidered one of the most knowleagable film experts in Latvia. Honors graduate from the Massachusetts College of Art and Design; received his MA degree from the New York University to which he has returned as a guest lecturer. Author of the features “Investigation of Related Events” (1993), “Hide-andSeek” (2003), “Vogelfrei” (2007, along with Anna Viduleja, Gatis Šmits, Jānis Kalējs) and upcoming documentary “Eliyahu Rips. The Burning” (2015). Since 2002 a director at the advertising agency and film production company “Film Angels Studio”.

MARIËTTE RISSENBEEK (GERMANY) Born in the Netherlands, studied German Language and Literature; has worked in acquisition for the German distributor Tobis Filmkunst and as a producer at Regina Ziegler Filmproduktion (producing theatrical projects by Fridrik Thor Fridriksson, Mika Kaurismäki, Jos Stelling among others and a number of TV projects). With Mika Kaurismäki produced his “Highway Society” (2000). Since 2002 she works for German Films, since 2010 being its Managing Director. Additionally, she is on the Supervisory Board of the Berlinale Film Festival and on the Board of Directors of the European Film Promotion and on the Advisory Board of the University for Film and Television in Munich.


RIGA IFF OFFICIAL COMPETITION | 13

KIRSI TYKKYLÄINEN (FINLAND) For many years Kirsi Tykkyläinen was the Managing Director of the Finnish Film Foundation; she has also been the head curator of Moscow International Film Festival programme; but along with holding these impressive industry titles, Kirsi has participated in several films as an actress. Among others, her filmography includes films of internationally recognized auteur Aki Kaurismäki, for example, the cult classic “Leningrad Cowboys Meet Moses” (1994) that has certainly remained in the memory of many with the outlandish coiffures its characters sported.

ZARA ABDULLAEVA (RUSSIA) Film historian and critic, long-standing collaborator of the main Russian film magazine “Isskustvo kino” (Cinema Art). As such, blogs (in Russian) at www.kinoart.ru. Author of numerous publications on film history and theory, theatre and literature, as well as several books, including monographs on Kira Muratova and Ulrich Seidl, and a research paper “Postoc: Fiction/Documentary” about the trends following postmodernism in several disciplines of art.

SANTA LINGEVIČIŪTĖ (LITHUANIA) Lithuanian Santa Lingevičiūte graduated from the Queen Mary University of London with MA degree in Film Studies; she is the artistic director of the Vilnius International Film Festival “Kino pavasaris”, and a curator and coordinator of the Artscape project that focuses on European cinema, as well as the editor-in-chief of cinema magazine “Kinas”. Writes film and book reviews and covers film festivals for various Lithuanian magazines and newspapers. Member of the Lithuanian Film Critic Association.


14 | RIGA IFF OFFICIAL COMPETITION

RAMS ORIGINAL TITLE

HRÚTAR ICELAND, DENMARK / 2015 / 93 MIN / FICTION / COLOUR

DIRECTOR

GRÍMUR HÁKONARSON

SCRIPT

GRÍMUR HÁKONARSON

CAMERA CAST

STURLA BRANDTH GRØVLEN SIGURÐUR SIGURJÓNSSON, THEODÓR JÚLÍUSSON, CHARLOTTE BØVING, JON BENONYSSON, GUNNAR JÓNSSON

PRODUCER PRODUCTION COMPANY SALES

GRIMAR JONSSON NETOP FILMS KINO BIZE

Brothers Gummi and Kiddi are sheep-farmers who pride themselves with the best flocks in Iceland. And yet although they have a common job, and their sheep have a common ancestor, the brothers have not spoken in decades. When Kiddi’s flock gets infected with a deadly disease, and the government decides to destroy it entirely, the brothers are forced to overcome their disagreements in order to avoid a disaster and save their farms. Armed with a shotgun and wit, Gummi and Kiddi are ready to take on anyone. This is the experienced documentarist Grímur Hákonarson’s second feature – a heartwarming comedy about people and rams, which has received an award at the Cannes Festival programme Un Certain Regard.


RIGA IFF OFFICIAL COMPETITION | 15

THE MAGIC MOUNTAIN ORIGINAL TITLE

LA MONTAGNE MAGIQUE

ROMANIA, FRANCE, POLAND / 2015 / 87 MIN / ANIMATION / COLOUR, BLACK&WHITE DIRECTOR SCRIPT DESIGN PRODUCER PRODUCTION COMPANY SALES

ANCA DAMIAN ANCA DAMIAN, ANNA WINKLER THEODORE USHEV, SERGIU NEGULICI, RALUCA POPA, DAN PANAITESCU, DRAGOS STEFAN, TOMEK DUCKI ANCA DAMIAN, GUILLAUME DE SEILLE, BENEDICTE THOMAS, JOANNA RONIKIER, WLODZIMIERZ MATUSZEWSKI APARTE FILM, FILMOGRAF, ARIZONA PRODS. PASCALE RAMONDA

The unusual life of Polish anti-communist Adam Jacek Winkler is reanimated in a stylistically brilliant animation film based on Winkler’s drawings, photographs, and diaries. Winkler leaves his home country and settles in Paris; he is an ardent, impulsive and cynical adrenaline addict. When a war in Afghanistan begins, Winkler finds a common ground with the mujahideen and fights alongside no other than Ahmad Shah Massoud himself. Upon his return to Europe, Winkler, being a dedicated mountaineer, goes on an attempt to climb the mountain he had dreamed to conquer all his life. And there, on the Magic Mountain, is where his life comes to an end. “The Magic Mountain” is Anca Damian’s second animation, and the second film in the ‘heroic trilogy’ started by “Crulic: The Path to Beyond” (2011). It received a Special Jury Mention at the Karlovy Vary International Film Festival


16 | RIGA IFF OFFICIAL COMPETITION

PEACE TO US IN OUR DREAMS ORIGINAL TITLE

RAMYBE MUSU SAPNUOSE LITHUANIA, FRANCE, RUSSIA / 2015 /107 MIN / FICTION / COLOUR

DIRECTOR

SHARUNAS BARTAS

SCRIPT

SHARUNAS BARTAS

CAMERA CAST

EITVYDAS DOSHKUS SHARUNAS BARTAS, INA MARIJA BARTAITE, LORA KMIELIAUSKAITE

PRODUCER

JURGA DIKCIUVIENE, SHARUNAS BARTAS

PRODUCTION COMPANY

STUDIJA KINEMA

SALES

STUDIJA KINEMA

Proximity of nature makes people question their existence. A father and daughter, played by Šarunas Bartas himself and his actual daughter, spend a weekend in the country, trying come to terms with why they have grown apart. They are joined by father’s girlfriend, a young violinist, who feels she is at the crossroads where must choose either a career or love. Šarunas Bartas is one of the most well-known Lithuanian directors whose films’ meditative flow and immersion into the darkest corners of the human soul make him a likely match to Andrei Tarkovsky and Ingmar Bergman. “Peace to Us” is a ballad to a departing summer, lost innocence, and doubts present in every human life.


RIGA IFF OFFICIAL COMPETITION | 17

MUSTANG ORIGINAL TITLE

MUSTANG FRANCE, GERMANY, TURKEY, QATAR / 2015 / 97 MIN / FICTION / COLOUR

DIRECTOR

DENIZ GAMZE ERGÜVEN

SCRIPT

DENIZ GAMZE ERGÜVEN, ALICE WINOCOUR

CAMERA CAST

DAVID CHIZALLET, ERSIN GOK GUNES NEZIHE SENSOY, DOGA ZEYNEP DOGUSLU, TUGBA SUNGUROGLU, ELIT ISCAN, ILAYDA AKDOGAN, NIHAL KOLDAS, AYBERK PEKCAN

PRODUCER PRODUCTION COMPANY SALES

CHARLES GILLIBERT CG CINEMA, VISTAMAR FILMPRODUKTION, UHLAND FILM, BAM FILM, KINOLOGY KINO BIZE

Five young sisters are running on a country path, their hair waving in the air like mane. But this summer everything will change in an instant: after the sisters have begun an innocent game with their classmates, their conservative grandmother and uncle decide to marry them off, with or without their consent. Phones and computers are taken away, modern clothing is replaced by brown baggy dresses, windows are barred, and the house fills with various female relatives who set on a mission to transform the unruly girls into perfect housewives. The lives of the young women break under the pressure of the pretence and fear of a prejudiced mind. After featuring at Cannes, critics dubbed Deniz Gamze Ergüven’s melancholic feminist drama a “Virgin Suicides” with a Turkish twist. “Mustang” is her first feature-length picture.


18 | RIGA IFF OFFICIAL COMPETITION

OUT OF NATURE ORIGINAL TITLE

MOT NATUREN NORWAY / 2014 / 80 MIN / FICTION / COLOUR

DIRECTOR

OLE GIÆVER, MARTE VOLD

SCRIPT

OLE GIÆVER

CAMERA CAST

ØYSTEIN MAMEN OLE GIAEVER, MARTE MAGNUSDOTTER SOLEM, SIVERT GIAEVER SOLEM, REBEKKA NYSTABAKK, TROND PETER SAMSO MUNCH

PRODUCER PRODUCTION COMPANY SALES

MARIA EKERHOVD MER FILM SPEKTRS

Martin, a boyish thirty-something, goes on a weekend hike in the mountains. But one can never run away from oneself, and, just like many of us, Martin too cannot just be, without analysing his relationship with his wife and their small son, the mundanity of his job, the ever-present sense of alienation... It seems something has been irretrievably lost, and there is an urge for a drastic action. What would happen if they got divorced? What if the wife died? And what if he himself suffered an accident? When life gives a freedom of choice, how will Martin act? Ole Giæver’s simple yet deeply personal story (he is both the writer and director, as well as plays the lead role) resonates with everyone who has ever come to an emotional crisis and had been forced to unravel their mind’s puzzles.


RIGA IFF OFFICIAL COMPETITION | 19

THE EVENT ORIGINAL TITLE

СОБЫТИЕ

NETHERLANDS, BELGIUM / 2015 / 74 MIN / DOCUMENTARY / BLACK&WHITE DIRECTOR CAMERA PRODUCER PRODUCTION COMPANY SALES

SERGEI LOZNITSA DMITRY SIDURIV SERGEI LOZNITSA, MARIA CHOUSTOVA-BAKER ATOMS & VOID, CINEMATEK ATOMS & VOID

Leningrad, August 1991. TV broadcasts “The Swan Lake”. City streets fill with anxious people. There are rumours a coup has taken place, but there is no sure information from Moscow. The crowd does not know yet that this event, the so-called August Putsch, will become a historic breaking point, the beginning of a new era of drastic changes and the collapse of the Soviet Union. Sergei Loznitsa’s (“In the Fog”, “Maidan”) latest documentary uses archive footage filmed during those days in August. One particularly interesting episode features the current Russian president Vladimir Putin. “The Event” can be also seen as the sequel to Loznitsa’s film from the last year, “Maidan”, which examines how history tends to repeat itself. Ukrainian-born Loznitsa is the author of 17 documentaries and 2 features. His “In the Fog” (2012), which, along other countries, was produced also by Latvia, received FIPRESCI award at the Cannes Festival.


20 | RIGA IFF OFFICIAL COMPETITION

ANGELS OF REVOLUTION ORIGINAL TITLE

АНГЕЛЫ РЕВОЛЮЦИИ RUSSIA/ 2014 / 113 MIN / FICTION / COLOUR

DIRECTOR

ALEXEY FEDORCHENKO

SCRIPT

DENIS OSOKIN

CAMERA CAST

SHANDOR BERKESHY DARYA YEKAMASOVA, PAVEL BASOV, GEORGHI IOBADZE, KONSTANTIN BALAKIREV, OLEG YAGODIN, ALEKSEY SOLONCHEV

PRODUCER

DMITRY VOROBYEV, ALEXEY FEDORCHENKO, LEONID LEBEDEV

PRODUCTION COMPANY

29TH FEBRUARY FILM COMPANY

SALES

29TH FEBRUARY FILM COMPANY

In the newly founded Soviet Union, where people still honestly believe in a bright future, Polina, a commander of the Red Army, and her friends, avant-garde artists (a composer, a director, a sculptor, an architect, and a theatre director), are sent to the north of Russia to convince, using cultural methods, the local tribes of the advantages of the new government. Based on actual events, the film was shot in the style of magic realism, so close to the director Alexey Fedorchenko’s heart. Vivid and grotesque vignettes capture the harsh battle in which everyone’s a loser, the demise of idealism, and the destruction of traditions; however, the film finds room for original humour too. Fedorchenko received an award at the Venice Film Festival for his mockumentary “First on the Moon” (2005) and is currently working on a screenplay based on brothers Strugatski’s sci-fi novel “Space Mowgli”.


RIGA IFF OFFICIAL COMPETITION | 21

THE SUMMER OF SANGAILE ORIGINAL TITLE

SANGAÏLÉ LITHUANIA, FRANCE, NETHERLANDS / 2015 / 88 MIN / FICTION / COLOUR

DIRECTOR

ALANTÉ KAVAÏTÉ

SCRIPT

ALANTÉ KAVAÏTÉ

CAMERA CAST PRODUCER PRODUCTION COMPANY SALES

DOMINIQUE COLIN JULIJA STEPONAITYTE, AISTE DIRZIUTE ZIVILE GALLEGO, ANTONE SIMKINE FRALITA FILMS, LES FILMS D’ANTOINE ACME FILM LITHUANIA

Seventeen-year-old Sangaile dreams of flying but has a terrible fear of heights. At an air-show she meets a peer named Auste. Flirtatious and confident, Auste is a complete opposite of Sangaile; however, Auste earns Sangaile’s trust and learns her biggest secret. Auste’s love encourages Sangaile to conquer her fear and give herself to flying, in many senses of the word. Alanté Kavaïté’s sensual tale about the first love received the Best Director award at the Sundance Festival and the Lithuanian film prize “The Silver Crane” as the year’s best film.


RIGA IFF SELECTION


RIGA IFF SELECTION | 23

EUROPEAN FILM. A NEW CENTURY

DAIRA ĀBOLIŅA

How do we use the term European film in the second century of cinema? To confine art by geographical borders means to kill it. On one hand, the cinema now, more than ever before, is reflecting upon its own future. It does it sophisticatedly, shamelessly, playfully, and perhaps urged by some nostalgic motivation. On the other hand, cinema is fighting the sense of déjà vu, i.e. the need to recreate or rediscover the world at large. This dualist approach, which is inherent in art, is apparent in the new cinema as never before. From an aesthetic point of view, there is now nothing more luxurious, modern and sophisticated than black and white cinema. The Babel of Colour is being fought off on screen both by remaining with the 35mm film as an opposition to digitalisation as well as stripping the existing colours away by means of modern technology. At the moment, black and white cinema is a challenge to both directors and their potential audiences. It is a game of historic citation with a reflexive effect. Aferim!, which means Bravo in translation, is used ironically in the Romanian film. Yet the director Radu Jude has had it in genuine ovation addressed to his Balkan western, together with complimentary comparisons to John Wayne. The Romanian wave of hyperrealism acquired a taint of the genre and a sense of humour, without dissolving into repetitions and imitations. Genres of cinema and its paraphrases is the new password to the European cinema. It means flirting with both history and the present, and therefore with the audience. To define a genre means to provide the viewer with a point of reference, make them your ally – encourage them to enter the maze, promising the exit is just around the corner, while leaving the question open with aesthetic and dramaturgic tools. A dystopia, a romance, a sci-fi, a thriller (“The Lobster”) – four in one, if you wish, that creates a psychedelic, frightening, and enchanting world where so many things ring a bell. Another offer: a fairy tale, a romance (no one said how harsh it was), gothic, melancholic (“Tale of Tales”) and a distant reminder of Pier Paolo Pasolini. No longer there exists a pure genre, like there is no more pure water or air left on this planet. But these hybrids provoke completely unexpected emotions, manipulate with our physical senses as well as reach the intellect.


“FLIRTING WITH BOTH HISTORY AND THE PRESENT”


RIGA IFF SELECTION | 25

Nevertheless, the true god of European cinema is the auteur. Although disguising himself behind the terms of cinematic genres of new/old “waves”, the auteur makes a film an event through his personal experience. But let us not narrow this idea down to the director’s personality, because cinema is not the art for loners. What would László Nemes do without Mátyás Erdély’s camerawork or the acting skills of Géza Röhrig; what would they all be without a direct or culturally mediated relationship with the classic of Hungarian film Béla Tarr? From there comes this scrupulous attention to detail, the face of a person as a landscape, sound that visualizes stress on an almost genetic level, in an inexplicable way inherited from ancestors (“Son of Saul”). This year’s Hungarian phenomenon proves there are no used-up or non-commercial topics. Yes, it is serious and it demands seriousness in the auditorium. Europe will become a cinematic backwater unless it gets over its own navel-gazing while bearing a sulking expression on its face. Young European directors as well as old masters are making more and more films in English. Perhaps it is due to the lessening of national egotism; or maybe it is the fear of isolation. Whether it is good or bad, we will see. But it does open the door for film budgets, cooperation between smaller countries, and, after all, new stories. The past and the future, where the latest films so willingly play out their motifs, provide an armour behind which we feel if not more comfortably than at least safer. By the way, one of the most beautiful plots found, in one way or another, in new films is the story of finding a partner. A partner for life, for living, for love. If you are lucky. It has the price of life and death. Why couldn’t we see it as the current metaphor for European cinema?


26 | RIGA IFF SELECTION

AFERIM! ORIGINAL TITLE

AFERIM!

RUMANIA, BULGARIA, CZECH REPUBLIC / 2015 / 105 MIN / FICTION / BLACK&WHITE DIRECTOR

RADU JUDE

SCRIPT

RADU JUDE, FLORIN LAZARESCU

CAMERA CAST PRODUCER

MARIUS PANDURU TEODOR CORBAN, MIHAI COMANOIU, TOMA CUZIN, ALEXANDRU DABIJA ADA SOLOMON, OVIDIU SANDOR, JIRI KONECNY, ROSSITA VALKANOVA

PRODUCTION COMPANY SALES

HI FILM PRODUCTIONS, KLAS FILM, ENDORFILM, EZ FILMS BETA CINEMA GMBH

It is 19th century Romania. A local policeman Costandin takes his son and together they go on a chase after a deserted Gypsy slave. Costandin may seem a self-righteous and double-faced crook, plus the advices he give his son are dubious, but the truth is that he lives according a principle that says: “One must live how one can, not how one wishes to.” This is where comes the film’s catchphrase – ‘Aferim!’, or ‘Well done!’ And what about it if it sounds cynical? Will anyone care in two hundred years? The director Radu Jude’s black & white story has much more grey areas that it may seem from the start, and it doesn’t come as a surprise that in its native Romania the film has received some backlash due to controversial issues raised by the story. Nevertheless, the film has been voted to represent its country in the American Film Academy’s longlist of foreign features, while it also has received a Silver Bear for best direction at this year’s Berlinale.


RIGA IFF SELECTION | 27

TALE OF TALES ORIGINAL TITLE

IL RACCONTO DEI RACCONTI ITALY, FRANCE, UNITED KINGDOM / 2015 / 125 MIN / FICTION / COLOUR

DIRECTOR SCRIPT

MATTEO GARRONE MATTEO GARRONE, EDOARDO ALBINATI, UGO CHITI, MASSIMO GAUDIOSO

CAMERA CAST PRODUCER PRODUCTION COMPANY SALES

PETER SUSCHITZKY SALMA HAYEK, VINCENT CASSEL, JOHN C. REILLY, TOBY JONES, BEBE CAVE, SHIRLEY HENDERSON, HAYLEY CARMICHEL MATTEO GARRONE, JEAN LABADIE, JEREMY THOMAS ARCHIMEDE FILM, LE PACT, RECORDED PICTURE COMPANY SPEKTRS

Once upon a time, in a land far, far away, there lived a queen who wanted to have a child so much she was ready to sacrifice everything; a princess who dreamed of marrying a strong and handsome prince; a king who fell in love with a mysterious owner of a beautiful voice... You could think these stories are easily predictable, but Matteo Garrone’s (“Gomorrah”) fairy tale for grownups is full of unexpected twists. Inspired by one of the oldest European books of fairy tales, Garrone takes the viewer on a fantastic journey which will be especially appreciated by the fans of “Pan’s Labyrinth” and “The Brothers Grimm”. Beneath the splendour of the Italian landscape one finds spooky creatures, incredible transformations, and one or two advice for life. The film featured in the official Cannes Festival competition programme.


28 | RIGA IFF SELECTION

AMY ORIGINAL TITLE

AMY UNITED KINGDOM, USA / 2015 / 128 MIN / DOCUMENTARY / COLOUR

DIRECTOR CAMERA PRODUCER PRODUCTION COMPANY SALES

ASIF KAPADIA MATT CURTIS JAMES GAY-REES, GEORGE PANK, PAUL BELL UNIVERSAL MUSIC, PLAYMAKER FILMS, KRISHWERKZ ENTERTAINMENT A-ONE FILMS BALTIC

This is a sad tale of a life and death illuminated by the paparazzi flashes – of singer Amy Winehouse’s brilliant career and her untimely death. This documentary, carefully researched and produced for three years, features previously unseen video footage, interviews with Amy’s relatives and friends, and unpublished music recordings. Like in his previous film “Senna”, about the famous F1 pilot, Kapadia avoids using voice-over commentary while clearly exposes the mercilessness of the tabloid culture, inviting us to think about privacy and responsibility for those who live under constant public scrutiny.


RIGA IFF SELECTION | 29

SLOW WEST ORIGINAL TITLE

SLOW WEST UNITED KINGDOM, NEW ZEALAND / 2015 / 84 MIN / FICTION / COLOUR

DIRECTOR

JOHN MACLEAN

SCRIPT

JOHN MACLEAN

CAMERA CAST PRODUCER PRODUCTION COMPANY SALES

ROBBIE RYAN KODI SMIT-MCPHEE, MICHAEL FASSBENDER, CAREN PISTORIUS, BEN MENDELSOHN IAIN CANNING, RACHEL GARDNER, CONOR MCCAUGHAN, EMILE SHERMAN FILM4 PRODUCTIONS, SEE-SAW FILMS, DMC FILM ACME FILM LATVIA

If Wes Anderson and Quentin Tarantino made a film together, this is what it would look like: an eccentric Western consisting equally of romance, adventure, shoot-outs and black humour. This is John Maclean’s, a former musician with The Beta Band, debut feature; it has been praised by critics for its imaginative take on the classic genre, earning it a Grand Jury’s Prize at the Sundance Film Festival. In the 1870s, sixteen-year-old Jay comes to America from Scotland to look up his first true love Rose. The lad is taken under his wing by certain Silas Selleck, a mysterious traveller who has seen it all. Together, they set off to the Wild West, a journey that could teach a lesson or two to both the dreamer as well as the cynic.


30 | RIGA IFF SELECTION

DIARY OF A CHAMBERMAID ORIGINAL TITLE

JOURNAL D’UNE FEMME DE CHAMBRE FRANCE, BELGIUM / 2015 / 95 MIN / FICTION / COLOUR

DIRECTOR

BENOÎT JACQUOT

SCRIPT

BENOÎT JACQUOT, HÉLÈNE ZIMMER

CAMERA CAST PRODUCER

ROMAIN WINDING LÉA SEYDOUX, VINCENT LINDON, CLOTILDE MOLLET, HERVÉ PIERRE, MÉLODIE VALEMBERG JEAN-PIERRE DARDENNE, LUC DARDENNE, JEAN-PIERRE GUÉRIN, KRISTINA LARSEN, PHILIPPE LOGIE

PRODUCTION COMPANY SALES

LES FILMS DU LEMMING RUSREPORT

Célestine arrives in a sleepy village from Paris to start a job as a chambermaid with the Lanlaires, a bourgeois couple. The young woman is received by a harassing host, his sadistic wife, and a cold treatment from the rest of the servants. Meanwhile, she herself does not hesitate to use her own tools for personal gain. French anarchist Mirbeau’s novel of the same title has already been adapted for screen by Jean Renoir (1946) and Louis Buñuel (1964), however, the notorious book proves to be still a good material for a new interpretation: a fierce commentary on social and political issues under the guise of a costume drama. Jacquot began his career as an assistant to several grandees of the French Nouvelle Vague, but gained a wider recognition only recently with films like ‘Farewell, My Queen’ and ‘3 Hearts’.


RIGA IFF SELECTION | 31

MY MOTHER ORIGINAL TITLE

MIA MADRE ITALY, FRANCE / 2015 / 106 MIN / FICTION / COLOUR

DIRECTOR SCRIPT CAMERA CAST PRODUCER PRODUCTION COMPANY SALES

NANNI MORETTI NANNI MORETTI, VALIA SANTELLA, FRANCESCO PICCOLO ARNALDO CATINARI MARGHERITA BUY, JOHN TURTURRO, GIULIA LAZZARINI, NANNI MORETTI, BEATRICE MANCINI NANNI MORETTI, DOMENICO PROCACCI SACHER FILM, FANDANGO, LE PACTE A-ONE FILMS BALTIC

The films of Nanni Moretti, who could be Woody Allen’s Italian cousin, are tragicomedies of the everyday – they bring together humour, vulnerability, and a deep understanding of a human life, with all its joys and sorrows. In his films, Moretti is often autobiographical; although he has been making movies for almost 40 years, Moretti does not call himself a director. According to him, he makes a film only when he feels he has something special to say. This definitely rings true with his latest picture, “My Mother” – something that stemmed from the fact that during the shooting of his previous film “Habemus Papam” Moretti’s mother passed away. The film focuses on a character named Margherita, a film director, trying to retain control over her own life, struggling to deal with the charming while unbearable American star Barry (Coen brothers’ favourite John Turturro), her mother’s illness, and the coming of age of her daughter. “My Mother” is a moving story of coming to terms with an inevitable loss.


32 | RIGA IFF SELECTION

THE LOBSTER ORIGINAL TITLE

THE LOBSTER

GREECE, IRELAND, UNITED KINGDOM, FRANCE, NETHERLANDS / 2015 / 118 MIN / FICTION / COLOUR DIRECTOR SCRIPT CAMERA

YORGOS LANTHIMOS EFTHIMIS FILIPPOU, YORGOS LANTHIMOS THIMIOS BAKATAKIS

CAST

COLIN FARRELL, RACHEL WEISZ, BEN WHISHAW, JOHN C. REILLY, LÉA SEYDOUX, OLIVIA COLMAN

PRODUCER

CECI DEMPSEY, ED GUINEY, YORGOS LANTHIMOS, LEE MAGIDAY

PRODUCTION COMPANY SALES

ELEMENT PICTURES, FALIRO HOUSE, HAUT ET COURT, LEMMING FILMS, SCARLET FILMS ACME FILM LATVIA

In a near future, single people are forced to go the Hotel where within 45 days they must find a partner, or they will be made into animals. When David’s (Colin Farrell) attempts at winning favour with the women at the Hotel fall through, and the allotted period of time is dangerously getting closer, he runs away and joins the rebellious Loners who live in the woods, where he unfortunately falls in love. Coming from Yorgos Lanthimos, director of the award-winning “Dogtooth”, this eccentric comedy strongly smacks of an influence from the likes of Bunuel, Ionesco, and Borges. “The Lobster” is satiric as well as romantic, surreal while subjected to strict rules of its own logic. Having received the Grand Jury prize at the Cannes Festival, the film can surely be a perfect contender to the title of this year’s most moving and bizarre feature.


RIGA IFF SELECTION | 33

PARABELLUM ORIGINAL TITLE

PARABELLUM ARGENTINA, AUSTRIA, URUGUAY / 2015 / 75 MIN / FICTION / COLOUR

DIRECTOR SCRIPT CAMERA CAST PRODUCER PRODUCTION COMPANY SALES

LUKAS VALENTA RINNER ANA GODOY, ESTEBAN PRADO, LUKAS VALENTA RINNER ROMAN KASSEROLLER EVA BIANCO, PABLO SEIJO, MARTÍN SHANLY JUAN PABLO MARTÍNEZ, JAVIER FAVOT, ALEX PIPERNO, LUKAS VALENTA RINNER, ANA GODOY NABIS FILMGROUP PATRA SPANOU

Argentina is on the verge of a collapse, as is, perhaps, the rest of the world. A man joins a group of people in a strange training camp in the jungle. Trainees are taught various survival skills while also get to understand that when the society goes down its selfgoverning laws will no longer apply – a realization that awakens their darkest instincts. This Lucas Rinner’s minimalistic debut feature is like an ‘anti-blockbuster’: it takes the viewers’ attention away from the centre of events and leaves them pondering as to what were the reasons of the disaster in the first place, all the while keeping them on the edge of their seats throughout the entire movie. The film featured in the official competition of Rotterdam Film Festival.


34 | RIGA IFF SELECTION

SON OF SAUL ORIGINAL TITLE

SAUL FIA HUNGARY / 2015 / 107 MIN / FICTION / COLOUR

DIRECTOR

LÁSZLÓ NEMES

SCRIPT

LÁSZLÓ NEMES, CLARA ROYER

CAMERA CAST

MÁTYÁS ERDÉLY GÉZA RÖHRIG, LEVENTE MOLNÁR, URS RECHN, SÁNDOR ZSÓTÉR

PRODUCER PRODUCTION COMPANY SALES

GÁBOR SIPOS, GÁBOR RAJNA LAOKOON FILMGROUP RIGA IFF

Saul, a prisoner at Auschwitz who is forced to work at the camp’s crematorium assigns a special meaning to the last days of his life by deciding to bury a corpse of a little boy in accordance with Jewish traditions. When asked why he chose such a difficult theme for his first feature, the director László Nemes replied that, in his opinion, one must at least try to grasp the unthinkable. Although the camera does not let the main character out of its sight for the entire duration of the film, what happens on the periphery of Saul’s vision and hearing is what allows the viewer to almost physically experience the horrors of the concentration camp, making “Son of Saul” one of the most telling Holocaust movies. The film was awarded two Grand Jury Prizes – from the Cannes Film Festival as well as the European Film Critics’ Association FIPRESCI.


IN KINO VERITAS


“EVEN SUCH A UNIVERSAL EMOTION LIKE HAPPINESS CANNOT BE DEFINED PRECISELY”


IN KINO VERITAS | 37

THE CONSTRUCTION OF REALITY

SANITA GRĪNA

Today we approach the documentary construction of reality with caution, knowing how easy it is to manipulate an image. But it seems filmmakers in the past were also tormented by the same impossibility to reconstruct the “real life” on the screen. The French intellectual Edgar Morin and anthropologist Jean Rouch reasoned that in order to approach reality in film, one must be open about how a film is made. In the first shots of the “Chronicle of a Summer” we see the film’s assistant in the streets of Paris asking a single question to the passers-by: “Are you happy?” Yet even such a universal emotion like happiness cannot be defined precisely. Then the viewer is lured into personal conversations with people of different age, class, occupation and family status. The majority are common people – ranging from factory worker to students; it links Rouch and Morin to Dziga Vertov, whose chronicles of the Soviet everyday, the “Kino-pravda” newsreel, inspired them to call their approach cinéma-vérité. Meanwhile in Canada, direct cinema was born; it declared the opposite: a filmmaker must be “like a fly on a wall”, watching but not intervening. Gilles Groulx’s short film “Golden Gloves” takes us to Quebec’s amateur boxing environment, offering an unexpected range of emotion in just 27 minutes. Paradoxically, his most brilliant film, “The Cat in the Bag”, was staged. The film about two young people’s clash with the reality of their disintegrating relationship has captured a timeless essence of life: in many ways the characters from half a century ago, who ride their bikes and eat their brunches with croissants and coffee, could be our contemporaries. John Cassavetes’ “Faces” offers a different mixture of fact and fiction. A successful film and TV actor, Cassavetes invested the money he earned in westerns in his own films, becoming a pioneer of independent cinema. “Faces” captures a certain couple and their explosive divorce. The grainy 16 mm film, the restless handheld camera and the chaotic dialogue is a planned construct of life’s unpredictability. He shot the film at home, and one of the roles was played by his wife Gena Rowlands. When the life of a director becomes art, and with documentarists admitting that the presence of a camera plays an active part in constructing reality, are we left with a grim realization that the more we try to capture reality, the more distant it becomes? I think not. Because we make our own reality with each moment, each decision and each action that follows the decision. A film is just a reflection of this fact.


38 | IN KINO VERITAS

SYMPHONY OF THE DON BASIN

DĀVIS SĪMANIS

“My way leads towards the creation of a fresh perception of the world!” These words belong to Dziga Vertov. Being the most shameless of all directors of the Soviet school of montage, he was convinced that the true order of things can only be seen through his detached and mechanic cine-eye. The only “man with a movie camera” was privileged to document truth in a special way. Vertov had it clear that it is in his power to decode the communist world for the rest of the humanity. In the “Symphony of the Don Basin” the director found room for the widest spectre of cinematic techniques to create an international language of cinema while also serving ideological purposes. Although the film’s second title, “Enthusiasm”, indicates that Vertov was interested in more sophisticated structures than merely glorifying the five-year plan, or berhyming the hard everyday of miners and metalworkers, he nevertheless did pay his dues to the Soviet system. And yet above it all was his obsession as an auteur-documentarist, an intimate addiction to the medium of cinema, and the excitement of the creation of a new world. The reality captured in the mines, factories, and cities of Donbass, became the raw material from which the visual “industrial symphony” was created. From the very start alcoholism, idleness, and the twilight of religious prejudice are replaced with a total industrialization in which motor belts never cease to run and people in the plants move with the same automatism of the machines. It is the very beauty of the collectivized world: dark faces, black holes, the glowing mouths of furnaces, moisture, columns of marching workers, and easily perceptible hopelessness. The sad reality of the current events in the Donbas makes this mechanical cinema altogether eerie. An unforeseen rider of the apocalypse, Vertov provides a timely signal of the inevitable arrival of a tragic future, showing us churches being demolished, icons smashed, and masses throwing themselves into the dizzying dance of the collectivization. It seems the director is deliberate to show the parables of ideological phantoms, which could easily include the mysticism of the Orthodox Church, the communist propaganda, or even the idea behind Novorossiya. Meanwhile, Vertovthe-director gets carried away by the pleasures of filming and editing, and, while the new udarnik and Stakhanov culture celebrates the victory of the five-year plan, the film itself comes close to being an excellent experiment in cinema. Optical effects, unconventional camera angles, a wild montage of frames – this is just a fraction of the superhuman effort invested it the film. And it is yet another time that Vertov has succeeded in creating a perfect cinematic form, while for the first time combining a visual symphony with the musical one. It works as a stunning mechanical universe, planned to the slightest detail, so all the viewer must do is give in and be immersed in it completely.


IN KINO VERITAS | 39

ENTHUSIASM (SYMPHONY OF THE DON BASIN) ORIGINAL TITLE

ЭНТУЗИАЗМ (СИМФОНИЯ ДОНБАСА) SOVIET UNION / 1931 / 67 MIN / DOCUMENTARY / BLACK&WHITE

DIRECTOR CAMERA MUSIC PRODUCTION COMPANY SALES

DZIGA VERTOV BORIS ZEITLIN DMITRI SHOSTAKOVICH UKRAINFILM AUSTRIAN FILM MUSEUM

The Soviet montage pioneer Dziga Vertov is best known as the author of “The Man with the Movie Camera” (1929) who captured the rhythm of modern life in the cities of the young Soviet State. In his first sound feature, “Enthusiasm”, Vertov, as he himself put it, tried “to grasp the feverish reality of life in the Don Basin, to convey as true to life as possible its atmosphere of the clash of hammers, of train whistles, of the songs of workers at rest.” Employing a whole arsenal of cinematic tools and armed with extraordinary creativity when editing shots and noises from mines, factories, city streets, and fragments of Dmitri Shostakovich’s First Symphony, Vertov created a hymn of the industrialization, where one can also discern a few grim notes, like a prediction for the tragedy of the years to come.


40 | IN KINO VERITAS

GOLDEN GLOVES ORIGINAL TITLE

GOLDEN GLOVES CANADA / 1961 / 28 MIN / DOCUMENTARY / BLACK&WHITE

DIRECTOR SCRIPT CAMERA PRODUCER

GILLES GROULX JEAN LE MOYNE GUY BORREMANS VICTOR JOBIN, FERNAND DANSEREAU

PRODUCTION COMPANY

NATIONAL FILM BOARD OF CANADA

SALES

NATIONAL FILM BOARD OF CANADA

The Canadian documentary filmmaker Gilles Groulx’s dexterous and dynamic camera follows three amateur boxers while they prepare for a tournament called “Golden Gloves”. A victory in the brutal contest is their hope to break out of poverty. In sincere conversations the boys tell about their love of boxing, dreams, and ambitions. Groulx himself comes from a working class family, and in his films he has truthfully captured the bold Quebecois reality, becoming one of the best-known directors of the so-called ‘direct cinema’.


IN KINO VERITAS | 41

THE CAT IN THE BAG ORIGINAL TITLE

LE CHAT DANS LE SAC CANADA / 1964 / 79 MIN / FICTION / BLACK&WHITE

DIRECTOR

GILLES GROULX

SCRIPT

GILLES GROULX

CAMERA CAST PRODUCER

JEAN-CLAUDE LABRECQUE CLAUDE GODBOUT, BARBARA ULRICH JACQUES BOBET

PRODUCTION COMPANY

NATIONAL FILM BOARD OF CANADA

SALES

NATIONAL FILM BOARD OF CANADA

Claude is twenty-three; he reads and cycles a lot, is interested in politics, and tries to live aesthetically, but he is also lost in his own life. Barbara will soon turn twenty, she studies acting, believes she’s an optimist, wants to travel and live in Paris. Sometimes they eat brunch with their friends, a children’s book artist and a magician. Barbara would bring coffee and croissants, while Claude doesn’t take off his sunglasses even when reading a paper. They could be our contemporaries, but the young couple are the protagonists of Canadian director Gilles Groulx’s film “The Cat in the Bag” (1964) in which Claude and Barbara take turns to tell us the story of their separation. This ‘mockumentary’ is a bright example of “direct cinema”, the genre Groulx himself established, but it is also almost like a love letter to the revolutionaries of the French New Wave, especially Jean-Luc Goddard.


42 | IN KINO VERITAS

FACES ORIGINAL TITLE

FACES USA / 1968 / 130 MIN / FICTION / BLACK&WHITE

DIRECTOR

JOHN CASSAVETES

SCRIPT

JOHN CASSAVETES

CAMERA CAST PRODUCER SALES

AL RUBAN JOHN MARLEY, GENA ROWLANDS, LYNN CARLIN, SEYMOR CASSEL MAURICE MCENDREE, AL RUBAN TONY LYTLE MEDIA SALES

Richard, an elderly businessman, suddenly leaves his wife and begins an affair with a younger woman. Meanwhile Maria, Richard’s wife, also meets and spends a night with a younger man. However, their attitudes towards what happened are radically different. The film creates a tense atmosphere that occasionally boils up to a point of emotional explosion, reinforced by the use of hand-held camera and seemingly unintentional framing. ‘Faces’ is a brilliant example of the cinematic approaches developed by the legendary American. Cassavetes, together with friends and associates, including his wife Gena Rowlands, made the film over the period of three years, investing their personal financial resources in the process. Like his later films ‘Husbands’ (1970), ‘A Woman Under the Influence’ (1974), and ‘Love Streams’ (1984), ‘Faces’ belongs to the golden standard of independent filmmaking.


IN KINO VERITAS | 43

CHRONICLE OF A SUMMER ORIGINAL TITLE

CHRONIQUE D’UN ÉTÉ FRANCE / 1961 / 90 MIN / DOCUMENTARY / BLACK&WHITE

DIRECTOR CAMERA PRODUCER SALES

JEAN ROUCH, EDGAR MORIN ROGER MORILLÈRE, RAOUL COUTARD, JEAN-JACQUES TARBÈS, MICHEL BRAULT ANATOLE DAUMAN, PHILIPPE LIFCHITZ TAMASA DISTRIBUTION

The canon of the genre, the film ‘Chronicle of a Summer’, was a collaboration between the leftist intellectual Edgar Morin and the anthropologist Jean Rouch. Using an approach considered cutting-edge for its time, without shying away from revealing the camera and the filmmaking process itself, Rouch and Morin strived to create a reflection of reality as authentic as possible, bringing to life Morin’s concept of cinéma-vérité. The authors spent a summer following several ordinary Parisians. They interview a factory worker, a couple of artists, students, an African immigrant, a young woman who has left the safety of her parents’ home to go live of her own, as well as other characters who tell them of their lives and work, troubles and dreams, share memories and convictions, discuss politics, and comment on the very idea behind making this film. ‘Chronicle’ is a fascinating view of its own time in which one can detect subtle references to the processes yet to come and themes that would eventually become emblematic of the Sixties, namely, debates on social inequality, war, colonial heritage, and immigration, surprisingly topical still today.


Curated in cooperation with Norden – the Nordic Council of Ministers’ Office in Latvia, the Royal Danish Embassy in Latvia, the Royal Norwegian Embassy in Latvia, the Embassy of Sweden in Latvia, the Embassy of Finland in Riga and the Danish Cultural Institute in Riga

NORDIC HIGHLIGHTS


NORDIC HIGHLIGHTS | 45

Dear film friends, I congratulate you and the team of Riga IFF with this remarkable event – international film festival that has brought high quality films from various countries to Riga. As Ambassador of a small film nation – Norway, I am especially pleased that the festival will present some of the best recently released and internationally acclaimed Norwegian films. I fully agree with the Norwegian film director Joachim Trier, whose film is represented at the festival, that film is an international language transcending national borders. Furthermore, films also lead to cooperation between countries. The Nordic film programme Nordic Highlights within the festival demonstrates the extensive cooperation between Latvia and the Nordic countries in the film sector. I hope Riga IFF will raise your interest in Norwegian cinema art, and I hope you will enjoy the films and experience the life seen through Norwegian eyes. STEINAR EGIL HAGEN, Ambassador of Norway to Latvia

The Embassy of Finland in Latvia is proud to be part of this year’s Riga International Film Festival and particularly its Nordic Highlights programme. Films have a wonderful ability to make us feel, think, see, understand, act – and connect with other people. They can educate, entertain, enlighten and envision; once in a while one film is capable of achieving all this. A film can transport you to a foreign country, and transform the way you used to see it and its people. Great films expand our minds and make us understand each other better. I hope this year’s selection of Nordic films will do just that for you. OLLI KANTANEN , Ambassador of Finland to Latvia


46 | NORDIC HIGHLIGHTS

From a Swedish perspective, 2015 is a year to remember some of film history’s most iconic female actresses. Sadly, Anita Ekberg passed away in January this year. 2015 would also have marked Greta Garbo’s 110th birthday – and Ingrid Bergman’s 100th – had they lived to see the day. More recently, several Swedish female directors have also become internationally renowned. One of them is Lisa Langseth, who’s debut Pure (2010) also launched the career of the rising star Alicia Vikander. Langseth and Vikander teamed up again for Hotell (2013), which will be shown during the festival. Jan Troell, whose film The Last Sentence (2012) will be shown during the festival, is one of Sweden’s most internationally well-known directors and has among other things received an Oscar nominations for Best director and Best screenplay for his film The Emigrants (1971). Film culture from our Nordic neighbors is not less impressive, and I am very pleased that we can arrange this festival together. HENRIK LANDERHOLM, Ambassador of Sweden to Latvia

Dear Nordic cinema lovers, 23 years ago, the Nordic Information Office in co-operation with the Scandinavian Films organized the first Nordic Film Days in Latvia. Since then it has become a regular tradition in Latvian cinema life. Therefore it is a great pleasure for the Nordic Council of Ministers’ Office in Latvia to continue the tradition and, by cooperating with the Riga International Film Festival, the Nordic embassies and the Danish Culture Institute, to invite you to yet another screening of the Northern Highlights – a selection of the best movies that have recently been created in the Nordic countries. We are also proud to introduce you to the phenomenon of Nordic Noir – a genre based on Scandinavian crime fiction, realistic in style and with a dark, morally complex mood, which has recently gained popularity all over the world. Since the festival is a great meeting place for film professionals, we hope it can also bring some new trends in the cooperation between Nordic and Latvian filmmakers. Looking forward to seeing you at the festival, JAN WIDBERG, Director of the Nordic Council of Ministers’ Office in Latvia


NORDIC HIGHLIGHTS | 47

Over the last two decades, Danish cinema and TV drama have had exceptional international success, attracting the interest of viewers and cinema-goers around the world. New and young film directors have had a demanding platform to start from. At Riga International Film Festival, we are very proud to present both well-established and new artists, featuring different aspects of Danish cinematic creativity. The contribution will partly consist of the film The Hour of Lynx (2013) directed by Søren Kragh-Jacobsen who took active part in the avant-garde filmmaking movement “Dogme”, which started in 1995. The film focuses on being outside the norm and the sensation of being alienated. And the film Northwest (2013) by Michael Noer is a harsh but compelling description of crime, taking place in one of the most impoverished multi-ethnic areas of Copenhagen. We invite you to see the different aspects of Danish film art, and wish you a great film festival. HANS BRASK, Ambassador of the Royal Danish Embassy in Latvia SIMON DREWSEN HOLMBERG, Director of the Danish Cultural Institute in Riga


48 | NORDIC HIGHLIGHTS

RAMS ORIGINAL TITLE

HRÚTAR ICELAND, DENMARK / 2015 / 93 MIN / FICTION / COLOUR

DIRECTOR

GRÍMUR HÁKONARSON

SCRIPT

GRÍMUR HÁKONARSON

CAMERA CAST

STURLA BRANDTH GRØVLEN SIGURÐUR SIGURJÓNSSON, THEODÓR JÚLÍUSSON, CHARLOTTE BØVING, JON BENONYSSON, GUNNAR JÓNSSON

PRODUCER PRODUCTION COMPANY SALES

GRIMAR JONSSON NETOP FILMS KINO BIZE

Brothers Gummi and Kiddi are sheep-farmers who pride themselves with the best flocks in Iceland. And yet although they have a common job, and their sheep have a common ancestor, the brothers have not spoken in decades. When Kiddi’s flock gets infected with a deadly disease, and the government decides to destroy it entirely, the brothers are forced to overcome their disagreements in order to avoid a disaster and save their farms. Armed with a shotgun and wit, Gummi and Kiddi are ready to take on anyone. This is the experienced documentarist Grímur Hákonarson’s second feature – a heartwarming comedy about people and rams, which has received an award at the Cannes Festival programme Un Certain Regard.


NORDIC HIGHLIGHTS | 49

INGRID BERGMAN – IN HER OWN WORDS ORIGINAL TITLE

JAG ÄR INGRID SWEDEN / 2015 / 114 MIN / DOCUMENTARY / COLOUR, BLACK&WHITE

DIRECTOR SCRIPT CAMERA PRODUCER PRODUCTION COMPANY SALES

STIG BJÖRKMAN STIG BJÖRKMAN, STINA GARDELL, DOMINIKA DAUBENBÜCHEL EVA DAHLGREN, MALIN KORKEASALO STINA GARDELL, MAX HALLEN MANTARAY FILM, ZDF SWEDISH INSTITUTE

“My name is Ingrid and this is my story.” To create this documentary about the film icon Ingrid Bergman director Stig Björkman drew from Bergman’s diaries, letters, and the family film archive. Much of the footage featured was filmed by the actress herself with an amateur camera. Episodes with Bergman’s children playing under the Italian sun are shown along with flashes of photo cameras at film premieres and the streets of Rome where paparazzis are trying to capture the heroes of a new scandal, Bergman and film director Roberto Rossellini. The life of this courageous, talented and independent woman ahead of her time is narrated in first person by the actress Alicia Vikander. Björkman is the author of documentaries about film directors Ingmar Bergman and Lars von Trier. The idea behind the film about Ingrid Bergman belongs to her daughter, actress Isabella Rossellini.


50 | NORDIC HIGHLIGHTS

THE HOUR OF THE LYNX ORIGINAL TITLE

I LOSSENS TIME DENMARK, SWEDEN / 2013 / 100 MIN / FICTION / COLOUR

DIRECTOR SCRIPT

SØREN KRAGH-JACOBSEN JONAS T. BENGTSSON, TOBIAS LINDHOLM, SØREN KRAGH-JACOBSEN

CAMERA CAST PRODUCER PRODUCTION COMPANY SALES

LASSE FRANK SOFIE GRÅBØL, SIGNE EGHOLM OLSEN, FREDERIK JOHANSEN LARS BREDO RAHBEK NIMBUS FILM APS DANISH CULTURE INSTITUTE, DANISH FILM INSTITUTE

Helen, a priest, is asked to visit a teenage boy committed to a psychiatric hospital because he has killed an elderly couple and failed a suicide attempt. The boy believes his act was the will of God. Lisbeth, a psychiatrist at the hospital, tries to break through to the young man by signing him on a programme that involves taking care of a pet, but her experiment ends tragically. Will Helen be able to recover what lies at the depth of the boy’s soul? The film is based on Per Olov Enquist’s eponymous play. Søren Kragh-Jacobsen is one of the most acclaimed Danish film directors and the coauthor of the Dogme 95 manifesto, widely recognized as the author of “Mifune” (1999). Since then, the director has returned to a more conservative manner of filmmaking; his latest picture is a vivid example of the Nordic noir.


NORDIC HIGHLIGHTS | 51

OUT OF NATURE ORIGINAL TITLE

MOT NATUREN NORWAY / 2014 / 80 MIN / FICTION / COLOUR

DIRECTOR

OLE GIÆVER, MARTE VOLD

SCRIPT

OLE GIÆVER

CAMERA CAST

ØYSTEIN MAMEN OLE GIAEVER, MARTE MAGNUSDOTTER SOLEM, SIVERT GIAEVER SOLEM, REBEKKA NYSTABAKK, TROND PETER SAMSO MUNCH

PRODUCER PRODUCTION COMPANY SALES

MARIA EKERHOVD MER FILM SPEKTRS

Martin, a boyish thirty-something, goes on a weekend hike in the mountains. But one can never run away from oneself, and, just like many of us, Martin too cannot just be, without analysing his relationship with his wife and their small son, the mundanity of his job, the ever-present sense of alienation... It seems something has been irretrievably lost, and there is an urge for a drastic action. What would happen if they got divorced? What if the wife died? And what if he himself suffered an accident? When life gives a freedom of choice, how will Martin act? Ole Giæver’s simple yet deeply personal story (he is both the writer and director, as well as plays the lead role) resonates with everyone who has ever come to an emotional crisis and had been forced to unravel their mind’s puzzles.


52 | NORDIC HIGHLIGHTS

THE LAST SENTENCE ORIGINAL TITLE

DOM ÖVER DÖD MAN SWEDEN, NORWAY / 2012 / 126 MIN / FICTION / BLACK&WHITE

DIRECTOR

JAN TROELL

SCRIPT

KLAUS RIFBERG, JAN TROELL

CAMERA CAST

MISCHA GAVRJUSJOV JESPER CHRISTENSEN, PERNILLA AUGUST, ULLA SKOOG, BJÖRN GRANATH

PRODUCER PRODUCTION COMPANY SALES

FRANCY SUNTINGER FILMLANCE INTL. SWEDISH INSTITUTE

The protagonist of the Swedish master Jan Troell’s biographical drama is Torgny Segerstedt, a journalist known for his uncompromising stand on Nazism at the time when most of his contemporaries preferred the diplomatic approach. Segerstedt was a tireless critic of Sweden’s neutrality, which earned him quite a few enemies in his lifetime. His private life was no less defiant – although being of considerable age, the married journalist fell in love and began an affair with the wife of his friend and publisher. This is a story of how to maintain a lust for life until the last written word and the last kiss. Troell’s films are distinguished for their attention to detail and use of natural metaphors. The lead is played by the master of Swedish acting school Jesper Christensen, who has just been filmed in the latest Bond movie “Spectre”.


NORDIC HIGHLIGHTS | 53

LOUDER THAN BOMBS ORIGINAL TITLE

LOUDER THAN BOMBS NORWAY, FRANCE, DENMARK / 2015 / 109 MIN / FICTION / COLOUR

DIRECTOR SCRIPT CAMERA CAST PRODUCER PRODUCTION COMPANY SALES

JOACHIM TRIER JOACHIM TRIER, ESKIL VOGT JAKOB IHRE JESSE EISENBERG, GABRIEL BYRNE, ISABELLE HUPPERT, DAVID STRATHAIRN, AMY RYAN THOMAS ROBSAHM, JOSHUA ASTRACHAN, ALBERT BERGER, RON YERXA, MARC TURTLETAUB, ALEXANDRE MALLET-GUY MOTLYS, MEMENTO FILMS PRODUCTION, NIMBUS FILM RIGA IFF

Muffled emotional explosions under a seemingly quiet disguise; Norway’s Joachim Trier is a master of bringing an extra dimension to the frame – an invisible yet unmistakably present quality. “Louder than Bombs” is an extraordinary take on coming of age, something that the film’s characters, two brothers and their father, have to go through after they experience an untimely loss and are forced to return to long-buried memories and painful secrets. His third feature – and the first which has been filmed entirely outside Norway, maps a new territory in the aspiring director’s, known for his skateboarding videos, filmography, while also stays loyal to author’s favourite themes, memory and identity.


54 | NORDIC HIGHLIGHTS

HOTEL ORIGINAL TITLE

HOTELL SWEDEN, DENMARK / 2013 / 97 MIN / FICTION / COLOUR

DIRECTOR

LISA LANGSETH

SCRIPT

LISA LANGSETH

CAMERA CAST PRODUCER PRODUCTION COMPANY SALES

SIMON PRAMSTEN ALICIA VIKANDER, DAVID DENCIK, ANNA BJELKERUD, MIRA EKLUND, HENRIK NORLEN PATRIK ANDERSSON, FRIDA JONASON EN-B-REEL SWEDISH INSTITUTE

Erika is a young and talented interior designer who has everything in her life under control, until one day the life gives her something she cannot influence. She falls into depression and begins attending a group therapy. Dreaming of escaping from pain and misery, the group members decide to try out an unconventional therapy method which involves staying in a hotel, a place where pretending to be someone else seems the easiest thing to do. Lisa Langseth’s film on how to accept oneself and overcome an emotional trauma is a moving and unexpectedly entertaining chance to see talented Alicia Vikander (“Ex Machina”, “U.N.C.L.E.”) before her rise to Hollywood stardom.


NORDIC HIGHLIGHTS | 55

THEY HAVE ESCAPED ORIGINAL TITLE

HE OVAT PAENNEET FINLAND, NETHERLANDS / 2014 / 102 MIN

DIRECTOR SCRIPT CAMERA CAST PRODUCER SALES

J.-P. VALKEAPÄÄ J.-P. VALKEAPÄÄ, PILVI PELTOLA PIETARI PELTOLA TEPPO MANNER, ROOSA SÖDERHOLM, PETTERI PENNILÄ, PELLE HEIKKILÄ ALEKSI BARDY, RAYMOND VAN DER KAAIJ, DIJANA OLCAY-HOT THE YELLOW AFFAIR

Joni and Raisa meet at a children’s home for problematic youths, a place more like a prison than a social care centre. They steal a car and manage to escape. They end up on a paradise-like island where their journey turns into a surreal trip on drugs, but reality cannot be kept at bay for long. With carefree youthfulness, Valkeapää mixes genres taking us on a visual and audial journey, with an intensity ranging from a gentle dream to a nightmare. ‘They Have Escaped’ is the director’s second feature. It has received the national film award of Finland as the Best Film of the year (garnering also the prizes for Best Editing and Best Sound Design), as well as Sven Nykvist Cinematography Award at the Göteborg Film Festival.


56 | NORDIC HIGHLIGHTS

NORTHWEST ORIGINAL TITLE

NORDVEST DENMARK / 2013 / 91 MIN / FICTION / COLOUR

DIRECTOR SCRIPT CAMERA CAST PRODUCER PRODUCTION COMPANY SALES

MICHAEL NOER RASMUS HEISTERBERG, MICHAEL NOER MAGNUS NORDENHOF JØNCK GUSTAV DYEKJÆR GIESE, OSCAR DYEKJÆR GIESE, LENE MARIA CHRISTENSEN, ROLAND MØLLER, DULFI AL-JABURI TOMAS RADOOR, RENÉ EZRA NORDISK FILM DANISH CULTURE INSTITUTE, DANISH FILM INSTITUTE

The Northwest district of Copenhagen is notorious for its high level of youth crime. The eighteen-year-old Caspar is a petty thief who sells stolen goods to a dealer named Jamal. When Casper gets a chance to join Bjorn’s rivalling gang he believes he will finally be able to escape poverty. His hopes are shattered by Jamal’s act of revenge, and the more Casper is sucked into the war of the gangs the more important it becomes to protect his family, especially his younger brother, whom he has recklessly involved in his own criminal activities. This realistic criminal drama from the director Michael Noer, a Danish documentarist, is his second feature, which received the FIPRESCI award at the Göteborg Film Festival.


WITH THE SUPPORT OF THE EEA

KIDS WEEKEND


58 | KIDS WEEKEND

WHAT IF... ORIGINAL TITLE

TÄNK OM… SWEDEN / 2014 / 13 MIN / ANIMATION / COLOUR

DIRECTOR

MARIKA HEIDEBÄCK, LINDA HAMBÄCK

SCRIPT

MARIKA HEIDEBÄCK, LINDA HAMBÄCK

DESIGN PRODUCER PRODUCTION COMPANY SALES

LENA SJÖBERG LINDA HAMBÄCK L EDITION ENTERTAINMENT FILM, FILM I VÄST SWEDISH INSTITUTE

The film brings to life children’s poems that, through animal characters, tell us about a friendship between the biggest and the smallest, and their joint adventures. What if I were a big bat and you a little one, or if you were a little flea and I were a big flea. The film’s based on a popular Swedish children’s book by Lena Sjöberg, while the soundtrack was recorded by the lead singer of The Cardigans, Nina Persson.


KIDS WEEKEND | 59

OPERATION ARCTIC ORIGINAL TITLE

OPERASJON ARKTIS NORWAY / 2014 / 87 MIN / FICTION / COLOUR

DIRECTOR

GRETHE BØE-WAAL

SCRIPT

GRETHE BØE-WAAL

CAMERA CAST

PRODUCER PRODUCTION COMPANY SALES

GAUTE GUNNARI KAISA GURINE ANTONSEN, IDA LEONORA VALESTRAND EIKI, LEONARD VALESTRAND EIKE, LINE VERNDAL, NICOLAI CLEVE BROCH, KRISTOFER HIVJU JOHN M. JACOBSEN, SVEINUNG GOLIMO, MARCUS BRODERSEN FILMKAMERATENE NORWEGIAN FILM INSTITUTE

The Norwegian director Grethe Bøe-Waal’s debut is an excellent example of the Scandinavian family film tradition: a thrilling adventure that tells a story about the key things in life – responsibility for others, especially the family, the skill of mutual understanding, and honesty. The picturesque movie takes us on a journey to the very north of Norway, where we meet two sisters and a brother who ended up there, mistakenly boarding a wrong flight. What waits for them there is full of remarkable adventures and unexpected trials.


60 | KIDS WEEKEND

SHAMMIES ORIGINAL TITLE

LUPATIŅI LATVIA / 2014 – 2015 / 28 MIN / ANIMATION / COLOUR

DIRECTOR SCRIPT ART DESIGN PRODUCER

EDMUNDS JANSONS INESE ZANDERE REINIS PĒTERSONS SABĪNE ANDERSONE

PRODUCTION COMPANY

ATOM ART

SALES

ATOM ART

During a relatively short period of four years since 2011, the Atom Art studio’s series of short animations entitled “Shammies” has become something of a local sensation, as well as received much praise from across the border. The adorable animated characters explore the world just like their “peers” – the smallest movie-goers – would. This year comes with their newest adventures – the festival will premiere four new Shammies films. In these, Shammies will learn how take care of friends, build a house, do the chores, and play.


KIDS WEEKEND | 61

HOW SHAMMIES WERE GETTING MARRIED Shammies are playing the game of Chutes and Ladders. Sockie is out of luck; she’d prefer doing something else; for example, get married. But to whom? HOW SHAMMIES GOT WELL Mitten, Hankie, and Pillow don’t feel so well. Sockie courageously decides to take care of them until – achoo! – and she gets ill too. HOW SHAMMIES BUILT A HOUSE Shammies want to have a pet. They know they will have to take care of it, so they decide to build a house for it. When the house is finally ready, it appears that each of them had a different pet in mind. HOW SHAMMIES PLAYED HIDE AND SEEK Hankie decides to hide from others in order to have some quiet time to read. When the rest of the Shammies begin the game of hide-and-seek, it turns out that Hankie has found the best hideout without even realizing it. HOW SHAMMIES TIDIED-UP The Shammies’ room is so untidy that it’s impossible to find anything in it. To clean up the mess, first they need to learn where each thing belongs.


62 | KIDS WEEKEND

MORNINGBIRD AND MURMELTON ON WINTER HOLIDAY ORIGINAL TITLE

MORGENFUGL OG MURMELDYR PÅ VINTERFERIE NORWAY / 2014 / 8 MIN / ANIMATION / COLOUR

DIRECTOR

ANNETTE SAUGESTAD HELLAND

SCRIPT

ANNETTE SAUGESTAD HELLAND

CAMERA DESIGN PRODUCER PRODUCTION COMPANY SALES

HARALD FOSSEN, DEREK BATEMAN ANNA ERLANDSSON, ANNIKA BERGSTRÖM LISE FEARNLEY, TONJE SKAR REIERSEN MIKROFILM AS NORWEGIAN FILM INSTITUTE

What can Matilda do when it’s summer, but it’s raining, and she has to stay indoors? If it were winter, instead of the rain there would be lovely snow. Matilda’s dream of winter holidays can be brought to life by her little friends. Where do they live? In the freezer, of course!


KIDS WEEKEND | 63

THE BOY WITH THE GOLDEN PANTS ORIGINAL TITLE

POJKEN MED GULDBYXORNA SWEDEN / 2014 / 99 MIN / FICTION / COLOUR

DIRECTOR

ELLA LEMHAGEN

SCRIPT

ELLA LEMHAGEN

CAMERA CAST

ANDERS BOHMAN LUKAS HOLGERSSON, OLLE KRANTZ, NINA SAND, SHANTI RONEY

PRODUCER PRODUCTION COMPANY SALES

FREDRIK WIKSTRÖM NICASTRO TRE VÄNNER PRODUKTION AB SWEDISH FILM INSTITUTE

Based on a popular children’s book by a Swedish author Max Lundgren, the story was made into a TV series that quickly became a beloved household name, before it was finally made into an exciting cinematic adventure in the best traditions of the genre. The film’s hero Mats makes an extraordinary discovery – he finds trousers whose pockets are always full of money no matter how much he spends. However, while Mats is making the best use of his discovery buying everything he has ever desired, he is yet to learn there exist certain evil forces who wish to lay their hands on his valuable possession.


64 | KIDS WEEKEND

SECRET SOCIETY OF SOUPTOWN ORIGINAL TITLE

SUPILINNA SALASELTS ESTONIA / 2015 / 105 MIN / FICTION / COLOUR

DIRECTOR SCRIPT CAMERA CAST PRODUCER PRODUCTION COMPANY SALES

MARGUS PAJU MIHKEL ULMANN, CHRISTIAN GAMST MILLER-HARRIS MEELIS VEEREMETS OLIVIA VIIKANT, ARABELLA ANTONS, HUGO SOOSAAR, KARL JAKOB VIBUR, EVELIN VÕIGEMAST ESKO RIPS, DIANA MIKITA COMPANY NAFTA FILMS NAFTA FILMS

Ten-year-old Marie believes her parents’ jobs are more important to them than the relationship with her. Luckily, she has a wonderful granddad, a professor with a similar taste for adventure as has she. Marie and her friends are enjoying the summer holidays until the town is exposed to an unknown disease that makes all adults behave like children. The illness threatens to turn into a disaster, and Marie takes it as her duty to come up with a solution. The Estonian director Margus Paju’s youthful debut takes us on an exciting and lighthearted adventure which, since its premiere this spring, has become the most-watched family movie of all time in Estonia.


KIDS WEEKEND | 65

ANIMATION WORKSHOPS

OCTOBER 17 AND 18 AFTER THE CHILDREN ANIMATION FILM SCREENINGS CAFE FILM NOIR

The Shammies – Sockie, Mitten, Hankie and Pillow – live in an animation film. How did they get into the film we will find out in the SHAMMIES ANIMATION WORKSHOP on Saturday, October 17, after the premiere of the new episodes of Shammies. In the workshop we will make Shammies move and invent their new adventures. The kids will be able to work with an animation software which instantly allows to see the created movement – like in a real animation studio. How does Mitten jump, how does Pillow walk and how is Sockie dancing with Hankie? One will be able to create a variety of movement, and the kids will have to imagine what these characters could do. All the ideas will be drawn out as real storyboards and given to the authors of the film – the Atom Art studio. And it can very well happen that Shammies will like them and use them for a new episode of the series. This workshop is intended for kids from age 4 if together with parents, or from age 7 independently.

THE MORNINGBIRD AND MURMELTON ANIMATION WORKSHOP on Sunday, October 18, is intended for kids, aged 7 to 14, wanting to try out making animation film. The kids will invent the stories, create the characters and animate them. The workshop will teach the main principles of animated movement and show how to create simple characters from paper. The films will be made with professional animation software as a high definition video and the efforts of the creative work will be clearly visible. The stories and characters of the Norwegian short animation “Morningbird and Murmelton on Winter Holiday”, screened in the children animation programme, will serve as an inspiration. The heroes of the film will be ready for new and surprising adventures! The workshops are curated by children animation studio Multenkulten.

With the support of the EEA and the Royal Norwegian Embassy in Latvia.


WITH THE SUPPORT OF THE EEA

#YOUTH_MATTERS!


#YOUTH_MATTERS! | 67

THE LOST INNOCENCE

LIENE LINDE

Francois Truffaut, a director associated with the French New Wave, once said that people who remember their childhood as a happy one just suffer from a bad memory. It is Truffaut’s first film, “400 Blows”, that is considered one of the most vivid examples of the coming-of-age cinema, in which the protagonist is experiencing the transition from childhood to adulthood. Truffaut’s work marks the moment when such a genre becomes possible in cinema, i.e. a confused teenager is regarded as a sufficiently independent being to become the main character in a feature-length picture. For example, the Italian Neo-realism of the 1940s did not regard children as characters possessing a potential for action, therefore the child of Neo-realism is a contemplator, just a witness to adults’ weakness. In a traditional example of a coming-of-age movie the character would be a young boy who in a fairly short period of time (say, over a summer) is faced with an inevitable need to “grow up”; growing up in the narrative of the genre is understood as a moment when the hero for the first time has to make an essential decision outside a realm of the responsibility he is used to, therefore beginning to comprehend himself as a person capable of making serious decisions whose actions and understanding of the world changes something in his or someone else’s fate, even if only on an everyday level. These essential decisions often have something to do with friends, a profession, an education, or family (as in the Swedish drama “My Skinny Sister”, included in the Riga IFF program); it can be the first encounter with death, or becoming aware of one own sexuality. In many of these films the character often travels across a certain space, borrowing a stereotype from the patriarchal society about a man who must leave his territory to “conquer” new wider terrain in this mean world. The origin of the coming-of-age genre is sometimes traced to the motifs of Bildungsroman, a popular form of the 19th century novel, in which a naïve youth usually leaves the country and arrives in the city where his illusions are inevitably shattered when he realizes how harsh the world of adults is. In films this is represented by a landscape; whether it’s one of a country or a city, it most often is foreign and dangerous, and as if shouts at the character, “Survive, God dammit!”


“PEOPLE WHO REMEMBER THEIR CHILDHOOD AS A HAPPY ONE JUST SUFFER FROM A BAD MEMORY”


#YOUTH_MATTERS! | 69

Alternatively, the coming-of-age films could be called the films of initiation, because this genre is a cinematic scheme containing rituals of initiation – symbolic acts of becoming an adult, found in all societies. The territory where the line is drawn between the adulthood and childhood is of course rather abstract, so often it is defined by physiological means: historically girls come of age with their first menstrual period, while for boys it is the moment when the first sign of a beard appears and the voice breaks. In modern societies the transition is set as reaching a certain age of years at which an individual receives the dubious freedom to vote, consume alcohol, smoke, drive a car, or get married. This universal norm of transitional age does not necessarily mean that every person who has reached this age is mature enough to apprehend the newly-granted liberty and the responsibility of using it properly. The main part of an initiation ritual – a ceremonial proof to oneself and to the society that you are a “proper” member of public – has become obsolete; what is left is an institutional testimony in the form of a document. This is the vacuum that the coming-of-age cinema has been trying to fill by confronting its character, whom from the start is defined as a child who must become an adult by the end, with tasks to overcome for which he yet doesn’t have the instruments. Often the cinematic world doesn’t provided an adult role model to try to emulate either, and in the course of the movie, the protagonists have to define their new identity by themselves. The most interesting thing about initiation cinema is how it reflects on the social convention where childhood or adolescence is just a temporary construct, a pod one must break out of, a metamorphosis into an adult, a “real” person. Because of this, coming-of-age films often take a nostalgic viewpoint: how the fake, marginal “I” has turned into a “real person”, someone who is capable of assuming a conventional role, establishing normative relationships, understanding how the socium works and finding his corresponding gear. The genre fulfils the collective fantasy that we can maintain a social order. The hero is stripped of his innocence, substituting it with a “freedom” to be a grown-up. At their core, these narratives haven’t got farther than what is taught in Bible classes: we were banished from the Paradise by God, leaving us with just a small bundle of freedom and paying the price with the exile. I am not sure that was a fair deal.


70 | #YOUTH_MATTERS!

MY SKINNY SISTER ORIGINAL TITLE

MIN LILLA SYSTER SWEDEN, GERMANY / 2015 / 95 MIN / FICTION / COLOUR

DIRECTOR

SANNA LENKEN

SCRIPT

SANNA LENKEN

CAMERA CAST PRODUCER PRODUCTION COMPANY SALES

MORITZ SCHULTHEISS REBECKA JOSEPHSON, AMY DEASISMONT, ANNIKA HALLIN, HENRIK NORLÉN, MAXIM MEHMET ANNIKA ROGELL TANGY KINO BIZE

In Stella’s eyes, her elder sister Katya is a true star: she is the apple of their parents’ eye and a talented figure skater who spends her days practising the sport. When Katya’s dedication begins to resemble an obsession while she herself becomes emotionally distant, Stella is the first to find out her sister’s secret and realize its potentially dire consequences. She faces a difficult decision: reveal the secret to their parents in hope that it would avert the danger, or keep the promise to maintain silent which she unwillingly gave to her sister. The young Swedish director, the graduate of the Stockholm Academy of Dramatic Arts, Sanna Lenken’s debut feature is an intriguing and sincere insight into a relationship between two sisters. It is an emphatically told story of how children are faced with life’s most difficult situations and their surprising ability to sometimes deal with them better than adults.


#YOUTH_MATTERS! | 71

LOUDER THAN BOMBS ORIGINAL TITLE

LOUDER THAN BOMBS NORWAY, FRANCE, DENMARK / 2015 / 109 MIN / FICTION / COLOUR

DIRECTOR SCRIPT CAMERA CAST PRODUCER PRODUCTION COMPANY SALES

JOACHIM TRIER JOACHIM TRIER, ESKIL VOGT JAKOB IHRE JESSE EISENBERG, GABRIEL BYRNE, ISABELLE HUPPERT, DAVID STRATHAIRN, AMY RYAN THOMAS ROBSAHM, JOSHUA ASTRACHAN, ALBERT BERGER, RON YERXA, MARC TURTLETAUB, ALEXANDRE MALLET-GUY MOTLYS, MEMENTO FILMS PRODUCTION, NIMBUS FILM RIGA IFF

Muffled emotional explosions under a seemingly quiet disguise; Norway’s Joachim Trier is a master of bringing an extra dimension to the frame – an invisible yet unmistakably present quality. “Louder than Bombs” is an extraordinary take on coming of age, something that the film’s characters, two brothers and their father, have to go through after they experience an untimely loss and are forced to return to long-buried memories and painful secrets. His third feature – and the first which has been filmed entirely outside Norway, maps a new territory in the aspiring director’s, known for his skateboarding videos, filmography, while also stays loyal to author’s favourite themes, memory and identity.


72 | #YOUTH_MATTERS!

BROKEN HILL BLUES ORIGINAL TITLE

ÖMHETEN SWEDEN / 2013 / 80 MIN / FICTION / COLOUR

DIRECTOR

SOFIA NORLIN

SCRIPT

SOFIA NORLIN

CAMERA CAST

PETRUS SJÖVIK SEBASTIAN HIORT AF ORNÄS, LINA LEANDERSSON, ALFRED JUNTTI, ELLA NORDIN, JENNY T. SANDBERG

PRODUCER PRODUCTION COMPANY SALES

OLIVIER GUERPILLON DFM NONSTOP ENTERTAINMENT

The weight of time is very much felt in Kiruna, a nothing-out-of-the-ordinary and yet somehow peculiarly special Swedish polar town; the only thing that literally shakes the town is a coalmine, its only economic resource. The radio is anxiously broadcasting news about a possible disaster. Meanwhile, almost as if taking the imminent danger for granted, three local teenagers Markus, Daniel, and Zerin get their first taste of adulthood, its challenges and emotional turbulences. The poetic coming-of-age drama by a young Swedish director Sofia Norlin takes a detailed and careful look at these fragile emotions against the backdrop of the harsh Nordic environment.


SHORT RIGA


74 | SHORT RIGA

YOUNG LIONS OF GYPSY A CIAMBRA / Director JONAS CARPIGNANO / ITALY / 2014 / FICTION / 16 MIN

HOME DOM / Director AGNIESZKA BOROWA / POLAND / 2015 / ANIMATION / 15 MIN

SHORT RIGA INTERNATIONAL COMPETITION THE GREEN PROGRAMME Green is the colour whose shades are easiest to distinguish for humans as it is the most natural colour for human eye to perceive. Everyone who has reached their twenties will find the films in this programme relatable to their experience. Whether it is watching your parents grow old or having your first sexual experience, filmmakers from around the globe will always try to find new ways of talking about childhood and adolescence. For example, in this programme we will see the extreme boredom and pain that a lonesome summer holiday brings to a teenager – in the short film by Ivan Salatic. If the first film of the programme makes the spectator long for some action, the second, the picturesque metaphor “Schoolyard”, sets us in an alarmingly escalating playfulness of schoolchildren in a hot summer day. In the painterly flowing animation “Home”, Agnieszka Borowa manages to precisely depict the changes in your perspective when you come back to your parents’ house where things have not changed since you were a child. The programme ends with an Italian film that reveals the reality of a necessity to grow up earlier than one should.


SHORT RIGA | 75

SHELTERS ZAKLONI / Director IVAN SALATIC / MONTENEGRO / 2014 / FICTION / 24 MIN

SCHOOLYARD PROAVLIO / Director RINIO DRAGASAKI / GREECE / 2013 / FICTION / 10 MIN


76 | SHORT RIGA

SAFE SPACE GESCHÜTZTER RAUM / Director ZORA RUX / GERMANY / 2014 / FICTION / 13 MIN

ENDEMIC’S GREED LAKOMSTWA ENDEMITA / Director NATALIA DZIEDZIC / POLAND / 2014 / ANIMATION / 11 MIN

SHORT RIGA INTERNATIONAL COMPETITION THE RED PROGRAMME Red is the colour of the forbidden. Through the human history desire has been one of the most unwanted expressions – and one of the most natural drives of human beings. The films in this programme reflect on the various effects this self-censorship creates in our society and its individuals. The only non-controversial film in this programme serves as a warm-up: the short animation by Natalia Dziedzic draws the flow of passion by using the visual language of a simple line, which, just like a desire, finds no peace until the goal is reached. “Art” by Adrian Sitaru discusses the ethics of depicting the grave topic of underage prostitutes, by placing an actress, her mother and the directors in the crossfire of different aspects of fear and goodwill. The still persisting belief that victims are the ones to blame is elaborated in the film “Safe Space” by Zora Rux, where the story is told by using a smart combination of camera work and spoken word. The last film of this programme looks at desire from the point of view of one who knows that his wishes should not be satisfied – Guido Hendrikx’s documentary “Among Us” discusses one of today’s most disturbing desires.


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ART ARTA / Director ADRIAN SITARU / ROMANIA / 2014 / FICTION / 19 MIN

AMONG US ONDER ONS / Director GUIDO HENDRIKX / NETHERLANDS / 2014 / DOCUMENTARY / 24 MIN


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THE BREATH DE SCHNUUF / Director FABIAN KAISER / SWITZERLAND / 2014 / EXPERIMENTAL / 11 MIN

CHORUS CORO DOS AMANTES / Director TIAGO GUEDES / ITALY / 2014 / FICTION / 23 MIN

SHORT RIGA INTERNATIONAL COMPETITION THE BLACK PROGRAMME Black is the colour that does not exist. It is nothingness, the unknown, that triggers fear and humility in us as a response to it. The films in this programme place us in the presence of the primal forces of nature, let us experience the fear of losing our loved ones, the fear of losing ourselves and the inevitable struggle of overcoming these fears. In Tiago Guedes’s dynamic and breathtaking film we witness a relationship being torn apart by the fear of losing one another. While in the programme’s first film the director uses artificial deconstruction of image to depict emotional distance, the director of the second film, “The Breath”, gives us the chance to witness a fireman’s true fear caused by the artificial setting of training. The documentary “Object” by Paulina Skibinska is almost an ode to the beauty and power of ice, until the moment ice shows its true supremacy over human life. The programme ends with a devastating documentary depicting the agony and despair of the refugees who say their farewells to the ones that did not make it to the other shore.


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OBJECT OBIEKT / Director PAULINA SKIBIŃSKA / POLAND / 2015 / DOCUMENTARY / 15 MIN

SHIPWRECK SHIPWRECK / Director MORGAN KNIBBE / NETHERLANDS / 2014 / DOCUMENTARY / 15 MIN


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YES WE LOVE JA VI ELSKER / Director HALLVAR WITZØ / NORWAY / 2014 / FICTION / 15 MIN

KARIN AND THE COUNSELOR KARIN OCH KURATORIN / Director MONIKA ANDREAE / NORWAY / 2014 / DOCUMENTARY / 27 MIN

SHORT RIGA INTERNATIONAL COMPETITION THE BLUE PROGRAMME Blue is the colour associated with the flow of time. For us, time is an ever changing oneway ride that makes us continuously adapt to new circumstances. This process brings sadness in our lives, but there is also hope. The protagonist of the first film of this programme searches for hope in her counselor who helps Karin to find her lost identity after husband’s death. Not only does Karin find hope and a new friendship, she finds courage too, and even makes plans for an illegal Cuban cigar import business. In Dotan Moreno’s animated short, the hope for better future keeps a young man going even though every day he finds himself a slave to his mother’s love and manipulation. Yes We Love is the short that inspired this programme’s title. In just 15 minutes it shows four generations in the crossroads of life, hope, lack of hope and sadness that make people act out the most ironic scenarios. The last film of this programme is a piece of fine art that brings back the hope for more original ways of communication with the spectators through the silver screen.


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SOUND OF MY SOUL GLOS MOJEJ DUSZY / Director WOJCIECH BAKOWSKI / POLAND / 2014 / ANIMATION / 13 MIN

SHOUK SHOUK / Director DOTAN MORENO / CANADA, ISRAEL / 2014 / ANIMATION / 18 MIN


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1+1 1+1 / Director GIL ALKABETZ / UNITED KINGDOM / 2014 / ANIMATION / 11 MIN

THE SATANIC THICKET – TWO DAS SATANISCHE DICKICHT – ZWEI / Director WILLY HANS / GERMANY / 2015 / FICTION / 31 MIN

SHORT RIGA INTERNATIONAL COMPETITION THE WHITE PROGRAMME White is not really a colour but rather a combination of every visible colour that exists. Only with the introduction of our perceptual boundaries can the process of distinguishing one colour from another begin. The films in this programme place you in the outskirts of socially constructed boundaries of sanity. A fresh point of view employed by a filmmaker makes the audience question the definition of what is considered “normal”. In the second installment of Willy Hans’s “The Satanic Thicket”, the “normal” people are really the ones acting insane when surrounded by individuals with impaired mental health. “1+1” captivates the viewer by creating a detailed portrait of a serial killer’s mind with just the simplest black and white animation. On the contrary, “The Golden Legend” fills the screen with photographs, drawings and paintings that posses a collector’s mind. Finally, Pablo Lobato’s artistic documentary depicts a tradition – a display of collective madness triggered and kept alive by the Christian Church.


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THE GOLDEN LEGEND THE GOLDEN LEGEND / Director OLIVER SMOLDERS / BELGIUM, FRANCE / 2014 / FICTION / 24 MIN

CORDA CORDA / Director PABLO LOBATO / BRAZIL / 2014 / DOCUMENTARY / 8 MIN


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SHORT RIGA INTERNATIONAL COMPETITION JURY

LAURENCE BOYCE (Estonia) is originally from the UK though now mostly lives in Estonia. He is an award winning journalist who writes for numerous publications and is a regular correspondent for Screen International, is the Baltic Correspondent for Cineuropa and the editor of Cineuropa Shorts. He also regularly writes for Estonian newspapers including SIRP and Eesti Ekspress. He also works for Sleepwalkers Short Film Festival in Tallinn, where he is the programme director, as well as for the Black Nights Film Festival and the Leeds International Film Festival. He is a member of BAFTA, FIPRESCI, the London Critics Circle and the European Film Academy.

PĒTERIS KRILOVS (Latvia) is a film and stage director, and a brilliant pedagogue, professor at the Latvian Academy of Culture. He began working in film in the 1960s as a director’s assistant, and made his first feature as a director in 1977. Pēteris Krilovs has also had a few movie roles as an actor, but lately his award-winning documentaries “Klucis. The Deconstruction of an Artist” (2008) and “Obliging Collaborators” (2014) have been in spotlight.

JUKKA-PEKKA LAAKSO (Finland) is the festival director of Tampere Film Festival. He has been involved with the selection and programming since 2000. As a festival director he shares the responsibility to strategic planning and programming with a co-director. Jukka-Pekka Laakso acts also as the executive director for Pirkanmaa Film Centre, a local film centre in Tampere. The film centre is a non-profit organisation that runs an art-house cinema, distributes films in Finland and works extensively with media education. Jukka-Pekka Laakso is also a member of the National Film Council of Finland and European Film Academy.


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SHORT RIGA BALTIC STUDENT FILM COMPETITION JURY

NIELS FONSECA (Denmark) has been a film and television script editor and lecturer for twenty-five years. He works in all genres, from TV movies to series. He develops and edits feature film scripts, both national and international. He is an assessor for the film funding bodies, as well as commissioning editor and development producer. Lately he has worked extensively with TV series and trans media development.

WOUTER JANSEN (Netherlands) is the head of programming at Go Short – International Short Film Festival Nijmegen since 2009. He has a master’s degree in Cultural policy and patronage. Three years ago he started a festival distribution company called Some Shorts which specializes in visually powerful and daring short films and documentaries, mainly from the Netherlands. The films have received over 250 selections, more than 70 awards and were selected at festivals such as SXSW, Berlinale, Locarno, IDFA, San Sebastian and Visions du Réel.

ROBERTS VINOVSKIS (Latvia) is a producer who has taken under his wing several of Latvia’s young and talented film directors, among them is Aik Karapetian, whose film “People Out There”, produced by Vinovskis has both gained international attention and raised discussions in Latvian society. Vinovskis has also made a number of documentaries as director and cinematographer.


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BALTIC STUDENT SHORT FILM COMPETITION TALENTS OF TODAY – FILMMAKERS OF TOMORROW

On October 22–24 the International Short Film Festival SHORT RIGA will bring 8 incredible stories and, what’s more, – 8 unique conversations with the personalities behind the films – into the spotlight in the Baltic Student Short Film Competition. With just their first steps taken and countless lessons still to be learned, these rebellious spirits have already made some powerful statements and are arguably voicing the future of filmmaking in the Baltic countries. Baltic Student Short Film Competition is a special screening and events programme that involves the selected filmmakers in a three days long focus event, where the filmmakers will be able to discuss their work with international experts. The festival jury will be here to provide feedback on their recent projects and encourage for new ones, as well as giving necessary information for continued growth in the film industry. Events of the Baltic Student Film Competition include Student Work-In-Progress presentations, panel discussion “Student Film and Festival” and experts’ keynote presentations.


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SIX FEET ABOVE

I’M TWENTY SOMETHING

DEMBAVA

AUGSTĀK PAR ZEMI Director JĀNIS ĀBELE LATVIA 2015 FICTION 27 MIN

MAN DVIM KELI Director MARIJA KAVTARADZĖ LITHUANIA 2014 FICTION 20 MIN

DEMBAVA Director LAURYNAS BAREISA LITHUANIA 2014 FICTION 10 MIN

SELECTION I. TWO BOYS ONE GIRL It seems like the two-boys-one-girl triangle is one of the key themes used by young film directors in the past two years. Truly, this combination creates endless opportunities for a story to evolve. Two Boys One Girl programme features three films – two from Lithuania and one from Latvia. Each one has dramatic, as well as youthful, elements to it. Jānis Ābele, in his film Six Feet Above, reflects on a trivial love relationship of three young people, whereas the protagonists of I’m Twenty Something, directed by Marija Kavtaradze, are wandering pointlessly around Vilnius at night. Both films could be based on real life stories, likely familiar to each one of us. The last film in this programme, Dembava, directed by Laurynas Bareisa, is a sad fiction based on a true story, and questions the actions of two heartless young men.


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LAZARUS

HOUSE OF CARDS

EARTH IS THE LONELIEST PLANET

LĀCARS Director KRISTIĀNS RIEKSTIŅŠ LATVIA 2015 FICTION 28 MIN

HOUSE OF CARDS Director CARLOS E. LESMES ESTONIA 2014 FICTION 27 MIN

ZEME IR VISVIENTUĻĀKĀ PLANĒTA Director LIENE LINDE LATVIA /2015 FICTION 13 MIN

SELECTION II. SOLITUDE Loneliness as a social form is the key theme of this programme. Creating their protagonists as social individuals directors face a very complicated task – to make them come alive in the viewer’s heart. This is a hard task for young filmmakers and not everyone can make it work. The Solitude programme features three films pulling their viewer straight into the center of each story. Kristiāns Riekstiņš, in his film Lazarus, reflects on two types of loneliness – one of having a secret you cannot reveal, the other – of not being understood. Estonian film director Carlos E. Lesmes, in his film House of Cards, speaks of a young man unsure of his future. He dreams about distant lands while at home he is surrounded by lonely people longing for a friendship. Latvian film director Liene Linde’s protagonist is a seven year old girl trying to make sense of the world and grownups’ reasoning.


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PLENCI

TO LIGHT

PLENČI Director GATIS UNGURS LATVIA 2015 FICTION 23 MIN

TO LIGHT Director NORA SÄRAK ESTONIA 2015 DOCUMENTARY 30 MIN

SELECTION III. COUNTRY EFFECT Allowing us to travel in space and time is one of cinema’s special powers, and through the screen we can enter the most obscure and mysterious landscapes imaginable. Landscape, however, is not just a background. It creates its own stories and places for film characters to inhabit. Many film directors have gained international recognition capturing the landscapes of their home countries, as well as their traditions and everyday life. This programme features two short films, each one revealing stereotypical features of Baltic countryside. Plenci by Latvian film director Gatis Ungurs is a story of two brothers, which merges traditional folklore with contemporary reality. Nora Särak, a young filmmaker from Tallinn, Estonia, sees landscape as a means of telling stories and recreating the atmosphere her protagonists live in. Her film To Light features black and white photographic landscape images bringing us a close-up of the lives of two Estonians living in the small Russian town of Pechory.


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BALTIC MUSIC VIDEO COMPETITION BALTIC DREAMS AND EXPERIMENTS

Music video is like a time capsule, preserving the hot and the cool, the stylish and most captivating of the moment. Unfortunately, this also means that music videos age much faster than other forms of audiovisual works. In selecting the videos for this competition, we have paid extra effort to find music videos that have content, not just those that are pleasant to look at. By doing this, we hope to achieve that this selection of 15 music videos from the Baltic states will also be interesting a couple of years later. In this competition programme we have attempted to show what’s happening in the Baltic states right now, and the results are surprising in their differences. In the programme we will see music videos that are using this genre to make peace with the Soviet past, there are visual experiments, and there are jokes about topics that are unapproachable in other genres. And then there are also music videos that portray nostalgia and sentiment for a certain type of life which might have existed or might have been just imagined some 10 years ago – a time when things were simpler, more straight-forward. To balance it all out, we also have stories about far-away lands, keeping the escapist’s dream alive. We are especially happy that a good part of the works included in this programme are in the Baltic native languages, thus signalling that there are several distinct Baltic identities. As this is the first year of Baltic Music Video Competition, we have decided to include some videos that are a bit older than the rest, and in this way to give them a chance to be seen by a larger audience. Keeping in mind that there is no sensible way in which we can show everything that is happening in this genre in this particular region of the world, we invite you to watch this programme without presuppositions, with the only expectation being to have a good time.


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BALTIC MUSIC VIDEO COMPETITION JURY

MARTA GRIGALE Marta Grigale has studied dramatic arts in London and performs on the stages of several Latvian theatres. Additionally, she works in media – on workdays her voice can be heard on radio Pieci.lv, and every Monday she presents the 360 TV talkshow “Kino domnīca” on the current events in Latvian and world film industry.

EDUARDS ZAGAINOVS Musician and film editor, Eduards Zaiganovs has worked on a number of Latvian music videos. He is also a collaborator of the Veto Magazine.

MĀRTIŅŠ RATNIKS Mārtiņš Ratniks works in the fields of media art, audio-visual performance and graphic design. As a member of the F5 artist group has represented Latvia in São Paulo (2002) and Venice (2005) Biennials. Since 2000 works in the RIXC Centre for New Media Culture and has taken part in many international projects. Since 2003 lecturer at the Department of Visual Communication of the Art Academy of Latvia.


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SHORT RIGA EVENTS

SHORT RIGA BALTIC STUDENT FILM COMPETITION JURY KEYNOTE PRESENTATIONS OCTOBER 22 AT CAFE FILM NOIR The festival jury and special industry guests will give a hands-on presentations on programming and distribution as well as film submissions and entry requirements for international short film festivals, provide practical information on script development workshops available for short film projects, and give a keynote presentation on “Changing of Genres” – a discussion on innovation and development in short film genre.

PANEL DISCUSSION “STUDENT FILM AND FESTIVAL” OCTOBER 23 AT CAFE FILM NOIR Panel discussion “Student Film and Festival” will take place in the framework of SHORT RIGA Baltic Student Film Competition and aims to gather the festival jury, participants of SHORT RIGA Baltic Student Film, International and Music Video competitions, film school students, graduates and everyone interested in filmmaking to talk about the perspective of short film genre and the role of international festivals in filmmakers’ career. Special attention will be paid to student short film festival distribution, curating and programming for short film festivals, festival circuit and networking. Discussion moderated by: LAURENCE BOYCE (Estonia), journalist, film critic Participants: Wouter Jansen (Netherlands), head of programming at Go Short – International Short Film Festival Nijmegen Niels Fonseca (Denmark), film and television script editor and lecturer SHORT RIGA BALTIC STUDENT WORK-IN-PROGRESS (WIP) PRESENTATIONS OCTOBER 24 AT KINO BIZE SHORT RIGA WIP presentations event is designed specially for students who are seeking a professional feedback, detailed film analysis and advice from the festival jury and invited experts on festival distribution for their short film projects in development. The WIP event will be open to the general public. FOR MORE INFORMATION ON PARTICIPANTS AND FULL EVENT PROGRAMME PLEASE VISIT WWW.RIGAIFF.LV OR WWW.FACEBOOK.COM/SHORTRIGA


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ARTDOCFEST/RIGA


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ARTDOCFEST IN RIGA

VITALY MANSKIY, President of the Russian documentary film festival ARTDOCFEST

Artdocfest in Riga means Latvian premieres of the most vivid and current documentaries. Most of the films in our programme are in one way or another linked to Russia, but paradoxically cannot be shown there. This is due to danger to authors and their heroes, Russian censorship, Russian legislation and also its lawlessness. The reasons behind such a circumstance reflect, in essence, the Russia of today. This is what these films tell, despite the fact that some of them have been produced thousands of kilometres away from the Russian border. Last year was the first time we presented our programme in Riga, when the Riga International Film Festival was born here in Latvia. Making up the programme of documentaries in many cases we moved in unknown direction. We did not know what people would come to our screenings. We did not feel precisely what your demand was. Also, the Latvian viewers were rather precautious. After the end of the ArsenÄ ls festival, Latvia was left almost the only European country without a real film event. This years-long silence began to take its toll on the relationship between the demanding viewer and real cinema. But cinema is alive as long as it is needed by you, the viewer. And this is why I address you. First of all, Artdocfest, still continuing its rather active life in Russia, has signed a deal according to which it becomes an equal partner and, in fact, integral part of the Riga festival. Therefore, what we must do is make a solid foundation for our history in Latvia. I must admit that when we, against all odds, organize the festival in Russia, we have a very clear idea who is our viewer. We know and feel them. We breathe the same air. We are convinced we need each other. That is why Artdocfest screenings in Moscow and St. Petersburg are filled with people all day long. Riga is where we turn a new page. And we are vitally interested in understanding our new viewer. Let us introduce ourselves! We made the first step. Now it is your turn to step over the threshold of the festival’s auditorium. This year it is the famous and luxorious Splendid Palace. We want to define the nature of our relationship. Artdocfest, like its authors, does not have any claim to the truth in its entirety. We want to offer a dialogue on equal terms. We invite you to seek for meanings together. And because of that we raise rather controversial topics that come directly from the films in our programme.


For example: Would you agree with the statement that only a dictator can keep Chechnya within the formal limits of peace and Russian borders? What is better, a dictatorship with peace or democracy with a prospect of war? This question makes sense after watching the Swiss film, “The Grozny Blues”, and relates, as we well understand, not only to current events in Chechnya. Or, does a person have a right to personal happiness notwithstanding his or her sexuality? If so, that must also apply to gay marriage and the right to raise children in such a relationship. In France hundreds of thousands of people took to streets to protest against the new legislation. Latvia is in Europe, so anything might happen… Whereas in neighbouring Russia all this will still be impossible for a long time. It is this very impossibility where tens, or even hundreds of thousands of people live. Two of them are the heroes of the film “Let Me Just Be”, whose premiere is going to take place as part of the Artdocfest/Riga programme. Raising important questions is also the festival’s hit movie, the Polish film, “Domino Effect”, which tells the story of a Russian woman and her difficult road to integration into an Abkhaz family. The same can be said of the Austrian film, “When It Blinds, Open Your Eyes”, about a family of drug addicts living in St. Petersburg and dreaming, despite the life’s logic, of a bright future, which they cannot have due to absolutely obvious reasons. There is also my film “Iconoscope” about the magic role of television, which has become a new religion for the entire population of the Earth wherever the TV signal goes. The picture became a blockbuster of the Russian documentary cinema; however it was never shown on Russian television. “Airport Donetsk”, besides being filled with tense drama, overwhelms the viewers with an amazing detail which leaves them shocked. Mortal enemies in a mortal combat even in the last minutes on their own life speak the same Russian language. Believe me, every film in the programme deserves our special attention. Unfortunately some films to be shown in Latvia will not go to viewers in Russia. But that’s another topic. A topic for a dialogue which we will be encouraging after each screening. Dialogues will be an integral part of the Artdocfest in Riga. Dialogues right after each film and dialogues as an independent part of the festival. For the first time in Riga we will hold our traditional round table debate for the magazine “Iskusstvo kino”. Its host, the chief editor Daniil Dondurey, will raise a rather provocative question: Can documentary cinema avoid being propaganda? The same can be asked of propagandistic television and the entire profession of journalism. If so, what should the State and the public be like in which mass media are not obliged to be a tool for the propaganda? In addition to this, we will also, for the first time in Riga, organize a debate and a recording of a TV version of the Radio Freedom programme “Freedom in Clubs”, together with its regular host, the Moscow poet Elena Fanaylova. In short, if you are a concerned, demanding and thinking person, you won’t be disappointed. See you at Artdocfest/Riga 2015!


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CHILDREN OF IOSIF ORIGINAL TITLE

ДЕТИ ИОСИФА DOCUMENTARY / COLOUR

DIRECTOR

DMITRY ALTSHULER-KURCHATOV, SERGEI NURMAMED

AUTHOR

EKATERINA GORDEEVA

CAMERA

ANDREI LAZAREV, SERGEI NURMAMED, ALEKSEY KREMENECKY, VADIM CHAYUKOV, ARTUR BERGART, PAVEL BAS, ALEKSEY TITOV

PRODUCER

CONSTANTIN ERNST, EKATERINA GORDEEVA

RIGA IFF SPECIAL PRE-OPENING SCREENING OCTOBER 15, AT 19:19 CINEMA SPLENDID PALACE, CAFE FILM NOIR

If Iosif Brodsky could return to today’s Russia, he would meet the people who are protagonists of this film. This is a portrait of a generation. The protagonists of the film talk about Brodsky, but they are not literary critics – just people, who have been greatly influenced by Brodsky’s life and works. Although they have never met him in person, in a certain way they are still his children – Iosif’s children.


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WHEN IT BLINDS, OPEN YOUR EYES ORIGINAL TITLE

WENN ES BLENDET, ÖFFNE DIE AUGEN AUSTRIA / 2014 / 75 MIN / DOCUMENTARY / COLOUR

DIRECTOR

IVETTE LÖCKER

SCRIPT

IVETTE LÖCKER

CAMERA

FRANK AMANN

PRODUCER PRODUCTION COMPANY SALES

RALPH WIESER MISCHIEF FILMPRODUKTION SIXPACKFILM

After the fall of the Iron Curtain, Russia experienced a drug epidemic. Zhanna and Aleksey are the survivors; they are in their thirties, living in a small Saint Petersburg apartment with Aleksey’s mother and trying to control their use of heroin. “When It Blinds” follows Zhanna and Aleksey’s everyday in a sensitive manner, testifying to the fact that in the seemingly direst of circumstances there can still be a room for tenderness, quiet joy, and humour. Ivette Löcker has studied Slavic Studies, the history of Eastern Europe, and sociology; she began her documentary work doing research for other documentary projects. This is her third feature under her own name.


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TWO DAYS IN ILOVAISK ORIGINAL TITLE

ДВА ДНІ В ИЛОВАЙСЬКУ UKRAINE / 2015 / 23 MIN / DOCUMENTARY / COLOUR

DIRECTOR

RUSLAN GANUSCHAK

CAMERA

RUSLAN GANUSCHAK

SALES

LETTER TO FEST DISTRIBUTION

This film is dedicated to the heroes fallen for Ukraine. A simple, authentic story presents the world-view of the volunteer fighters, participating in the tragic Battle of Ilovaisk in August 2014. Without a voice-over or any other embellishments, this is the film that allows one to sense what war is really like. The author of the film, Ruslan Ganuschak, is a fighter of the controversial AZOV volunteer battalion and a war reporter.


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DOMINO EFFECT ORIGINAL TITLE

ПРИНЦИП ДОМИНО GERMANY, POLAND / 2014 / 76 MIN / DOCUMENTARY / COLOUR

DIRECTOR

ELWIRA NIEWIERA, PIOTR ROSOLOWSKI

SCRIPT

ELWIRA NIEWIERA, PIOTR ROSOLOWSKI

CAMERA PRODUCER PRODUCTION COMPANY SALES

PIOTR ROSOLOWSKI ANNA WYDRA, THOMAS KUFUS, ANN CAROLIN RENNINGER OTTER FILMS, ZERO ONE FILM AUTLOOK FILMSALES

Abkhazia is one of those “frozen” conflict regions of the former Soviet Union. Its people are proud of their historical heritage and will not let such nuisances like dilapidated houses and regular power shortages to lessen their love of life. To promote his native land, the Sports minister Rafael organizes an international dominos championship; however, the number of participants is fairly low, since only a few countries have recognized Abkhazia’s independence. Meanwhile, Rafael’s wife Natalia is unhappy; she thinks the Abkhazian patriots are resentful towards her because of her Russian descent; besides, Sukhumi is not the right town to have a career as an opera singer. This is a black comedy of true life which has received prizes from the Leipzig Documentary Film Festival, as well as Vision Du Reel festival.


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AIRPORT DONETSK ORIGINAL TITLE

АЭРОПОРТ ДОНЕЦК USA / 2015 / 36 MIN / DOCUMENTARY / COLOUR

DIRECTOR

ANDREI ERASTOV

AUTHOR

SHAHIDA TULAGANOVA

CAMERA

ANDREI ERASTOV, VASILIY RUD

PRODUCER

ANTON ZOLOTYKH

PRODUCTION COMPANY

RADIO FREE EUROPE/RADIO LIBERTY

SALES

RADIO FREE EUROPE/RADIO LIBERTY

Donetsk’s airport, named after Sergei Prokofiev, was renovated in 2012, but destroyed two years later in the war between Ukrainian forces and Donetsk separatists. The atrocious battle for the airport – a more symbolic, than strategic, aim – is shown through the eyes of both sides. This is a story about the frightening human ability to adapt to constant danger. The film’s author Shahida Tulaganova is a journalist who has worked for the BBC and Radio Free Europe and authored several investigative documentaries. ARTDOCFEST/RIGA PRESENTS: CAFE FILM NOIR, OCTOBER 21, AT 13.00 Radio Svoboda round table debate “Is creative freedom possible in a country that is not free?” and the recording of the TV edition of the programme “Freedom in Clubs”. Moderated by its regular host, journalist and poet Elena Fanaylova. Supported by Friedrich-Ebert-Stiftung. Informative support by the news site Meduza.


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GROZNY BLUES ORIGINAL TITLE

GROZNY BLUES SWITZERLAND / 2015 / 104 MIN / DOCUMENTARY / COLOUR

DIRECTOR SCRIPT CAMERA PRODUCER

NICOLA BELLUCCI NICOLA BELLUCCI, LUCIA SGUEGLIA SIMON GUY FÄSSLER FRANK MATTER

PRODUCTION COMPANY

SOAP FACTORY GMBH

SALES

SOAP FACTORY GMBH

Twenty years after the unsuccessful attempt to establish independence from Russia, the life in Chechnya’s capital Grozny still verges on the fragile border between war and peace. Archaic traditions and political repression contrast with modern skyscrapers and the longing for freedom. The film’s four female characters are fighting for human rights while the situation in the country is becoming increasingly toxic. Young people are amongst those trying to capture the air of change; they frequent a blues club that is located in the same building as the human rights organization office. For them, the war is just a hazy memory from the childhood. Combining footages from different time periods into one symbolic and simultaneous reality, the director Nicola Belluci composes the Grozny Blues – a poetic, personal, and political narrative.


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ICONOSCOPE ORIGINAL TITLE

ИКОНОСКОП RUSSIA / 2012 / 104 MIN / DOCUMENTARY / COLOUR, BLACK&WHITE

DIRECTOR

VITALY MANSKIY

CAMERA

YULIA GALOCHKINA

PRODUCER

ILYA BATCHURIN, FYODOR BONDARCHUK

PRODUCTION COMPANY

GLAVKINO, VERTOV. REAL CINEMA

SALES

GLAVKINO

In the 20th century, television became not just a part of our culture and a means of entertainment, but also a powerful weapon of the Cold War propaganda. Together with the legends of American and Soviet television, the film follows through the history of television, trying to unravel the mystery of its success and influence. Vitaly Manskiy is one of the best-known Russian documentarists, with more than 30 titles under his name. His films regularly feature in international festivals, including the IDFA and the Cannes Film Festival, receiving more than 30 awards.

ARTDOCFEST/RIGA PRESENTS: CAFE FILM NOIR, OCTOBER 19, AT 13.00 Round table debate “Can documentary cinema avoid being propaganda?” Moderated by Daniil Dondurey, sociologist and editor-in-chief of the magazine “Iskusstvo kino” (Russia). Supported by Friedrich-Ebert-Stiftung.


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LET ME JUST BE ORIGINAL TITLE

МОЖНО Я ПРОСТО БУДУ? RUSSIA / 2015 / 75 MIN / DOCUMENTARY / COLOUR

DIRECTOR

MATVEY TROSHINKIN

SCRIPT

MATVEY TROSHINKIN

CAMERA

MATVEY TROSHINKIN

PRODUCER

MARIA CHUPRINSKAYA

PRODUCTION COMPANY

ФОНД ЭТНОГЕОГРАФИЧЕСКИХ ИССЛЕДОВАНИЙ

SALES

ФОНД ЭТНОГЕОГРАФИЧЕСКИХ ИССЛЕДОВАНИЙ

Zenya Tsoy is an impression artist who impersonates the grandees of Russian show business, becoming, for example, Filip Kirkorov or the singer Lolita. He is thirty-three, and for many years he has been living with Maksim, the world’s most charming bus driver. However, is it possible, in the twenty-first century Russia, to live one’s own life, do what one wants, or just love one another? “The Fund for Ethnogeographic Research” has been active since 2000, and this is the studio’s latest film. The fund’s films have travelled to festivals in Leipzig, Tampere, as well as featured in “Hot Docs” in Canada.


ARTDOCFEST/RIGA | 105

MUSEUM “REVOLUTION” ORIGINAL TITLE

МУЗЕЙ “PЕВОЛЮЦИЯ” RUSSIA, UKRAINE, AUSTRIA / 2014 / 73 MIN / DOCUMENTARY / COLOUR

DIRECTOR

NATALIYA BABINTSEVA

SCRIPT

NATALIYA BABINTSEVA

CAMERA PRODUCER PRODUCTION COMPANY SALES

DMITRY RUDAKOV, SERGEY STETSENKO, DENIS MELNIK ANATOLY GOLUBOVSKIY, DENIS BRANITSKIY KINOKI STUDIO LTD. KINOKI STUDIO LTD., BABYLON’13

A revolution changes the social and political landscape; but first it transforms the actual one. No other European capital city centre had recently looked the way Kiev’s Maidan did a short while ago, resembling a medieval carnival or a futuristic fantasy. “This is a total installation,” one artist says in the film. Just like in a carnival, in a revolution everyday objects change their meaning and suddenly become museum artefacts, like artist-painted police shields and pompous attributes of the fallen regime. “Museum ‘Revolution’” is an extraordinary view on the Ukrainian events through the prism of artists, museum workers, and curators, who try to retain the present for the future while the present is still happening before their very eyes.


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ON THE MOVE

KRISTĪNE MATĪSA, Senior Officer of the National Film Centre of Latvia

If asked to give a concise description of Latvian cinema at the moment, I would put it simply: Latvian cinema is on the move. Furthermore, it doesn’t just move slowly and painfully, as if pushed by someone else, but in a brisk manner, like a person knowing where she’s going. Just a short while ago we were used to checking its health once in two years, because there was no need to do it more often. Since December 2014, when the Latvian National film festival “Lielais Kristaps” closed in a joint accord with the Riga International Film Festival, while in a mobilizing presence of the European Film Academy, it has become clear that the pace with which Latvian cinema is traveling is gradually increasing and there’s no need to try and slow it down, which resulted in a decision from then on to organize the festival annually. It makes perfect sense to speak about the festival on the pages of Riga IFF catalogue, because this year Latvian cinema is again in a close relationship with the Riga IFF, from which it receives an opportunity to present itself and see others, in a considerably wider international context. But most importantly, this journey is not an aimless stroll. The journey itself has several goals, some of which can be reached sooner than the others. One such tangible goal is the 100th anniversary of the Latvian State in 2018 that will be celebrated with more than ten feature-length films, significant and diverse in their genres and social impact, produced specially for the occasion. Preparation works have already begun, the first round of the special funding programme has been organized, and the results, in the form of project descriptions and other informational materials, have been published on the website filmas.lv. In the beginning of December, a special jury will hold the second round and eventually name features, documentaries and animations which will receive funding, so that the public, too, can expect many cinematic presents for the big jubilee. It is important that the programme intends a significant financial support from the State budget for several years; and it is clear that Riga IFF can expect even more films competing for a spot in their Baltic film selection in the next few years. The second goal, which is farther away, is meeting the needs of the Latvian film viewer. It demands a clear understanding of how the outlook and habits of filmgoers, formats, technologies and relationships change over time. Latvian film producers make increasingly bigger effort to make films available on digital platforms, not only in cinemas, although in this sense, too, the interest in local productions has increased significantly over the last two years. In 2014, each film gathered tens of thousands of


“THIS JOURNEY IS NOT AN AIMLESS STROLL”


LIELAIS KRISTAPS. SELECTION | 109

viewers, which, together with TV screenings, reached the number of 100,000 viewers. Meanwhile, in 2015, the victorious offensive was continued by documentary cinema: the fact that two local documentaries (both included in the Riga IFF selection) in a short time became hits has no precedent in the latest history of Latvian filmmaking. The crown of the increasingly encouraging trend is the positive fuss around the new section on fi lmas.lv, “Latvian fi lms online”; no other culture-content website has experienced such active interest in the first days and weeks after opening; it’s shortly before midnight, but the website has some 300 simultaneous users. What are they doing here? Soon such questions will not be necessary; soon we’ll understand the obvious: that the viewer wants to watch Latvian films. And the journey continues.


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HI, RASMA! ORIGINAL TITLE

ČAU, RASMA! LATVIA, ESTONIA / 2014 / 38 MIN / DOCUMENTARY / COLOUR

DIRECTOR

LAILA PAKALNIŅA

SCRIPT

LAILA PAKALNIŅA

CAMERA PRODUCER

ARKO OKK LAILA PAKALNIŅA, ARKO OKK, JURĢIS KRĀSONS

PRODUCTION COMPANY

HARGLA

SALES

HARGLA

At the end of the Second World War, near an Estonian island a Latvian steamship Rasma ran onto a mine and sank. On board it had manufacturing equipment from Riga Sewing Factory, Husqvarna bicycles, crops and flour. The movie was filmed on Mohni Island, in its villages Turbuneeme, Viinistu and Pärispea during the summer of 2013, almost 70 years after the catastrophe. The authors were trying to recover not only bicycles and sewing machines but also memories and people’s stories. Laila Pakalniņa, one of the best known Latvian film directors, has been in the industry since late 1980s, working on documentaries as well as features, more than 30 titles in all. Her latest feature “Ausma” will be premiered at the end of this year.


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DOUBLE ALIENS ORIGINAL TITLE

DUBULTIE SVEŠINIEKI LATVIA, GEORGIA / 2015 / 56 MIN / DOCUMENTARY / COLOUR

DIRECTOR SCRIPT CAMERA PRODUCER PRODUCTION COMPANY SALES

UĢIS OLTE UĢIS OLTE, DARO SULAKAURI, GIVI ODISHARIA VALDIS CELMIŅŠ, ULDIS CEKULIS ULDIS CEKULIS, ANNA DZIAPSHIPA VFS FILMS, SACDOC FILM VFS FILMS

A wild terrain is like an open book where one can record one’s own story. A filmmaker from the North and a photographer from the South go to an alien land. It’s populated by people worn out by history; time tends to stand still, but any new encounter is like a broken mirror with one’s reflection. Uģis Olte is an experienced TV director and editor and the author of two short films. “Double Aliens” is his fourth documentary.


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IT’S ABOUT TIME ORIGINAL TITLE

LAIKS IET LATVIA / 2015 / 6 MIN / ANIMATION / COLOUR

DIRECTOR

IVO BRIEDIS

SCRIPT

IVO BRIEDIS

DESIGN PRODUCER

VALDIS BROŽE, ANU-LAURA TUTTELBERG SABĪNE ANDERSONE

PRODUCTION COMPANY

ATOM ART

SALES

ATOM ART

“It’s about time”, says a piece of paper stuck to a windowpane. These words encourage a lonely man to go out into town, but the old man is too slow, and dressing up takes too much time for him to leave the house before it gets dark. This happens every day: he goes to bed prepared to go out and wakes up ready to get dressed before the night comes. It is impossible to hold back the time, but it can hold us back, or can it? Ivo Briedis has written several Latvian films, been the director of a short called “The Film” and a documentary entitled “The National Touch” (together with Morten Traavik). An animation “To Swallow a Toad” (2010), directed by Juris Krāsons and based on Briedis’ idea and screenplay, received three Grand Prix at various international animated film festivals and was featured in Cannes.


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MY SIX MILLION DOLLAR FATHER ORIGINAL TITLE

MANS TĒVS BAŅĶIERIS LATVIA / 2015 / 68 MIN / DOCUMENTARY / COLOUR

DIRECTOR CAMERA PRODUCER

IEVA OZOLIŅA ALEKSANDRS GREBŅEVS GINTS GRŪBE

PRODUCTION COMPANY

MISTRUS MEDIA

SALES

MISTRUS MEDIA

Ieva Ozoliņa’s debut is a personal thriller. During 1990s, her father, a president of a bank going bankrupt, goes missing. The father has been on Interpol’s list of wanted men for the last sixteen years, until one day news arrive that a man fitting the profile has been admitted to a psychiatric hospital in Kuala Lumpur. Is he really Ieva’s father, and how did he end up in Malaysia? This is a captivating and poignant story about a person who loses himself at the time of change.


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THE MAN IN THE ORANGE JACKET ORIGINAL TITLE

М.О.Ж. LATVIA, ESTONIA / 2014 / 71 MIN / FICTION / COLOUR

DIRECTOR

AIK KARAPETIAN

SCRIPT

AIK KARAPETIAN

CAMERA CAST PRODUCER PRODUCTION COMPANY SALES

JĀNIS EGLĪTIS, JURĢIS KMINS MAXIM LAZAREV, ANTA AIZUPE, ĀRIS ROZENTĀLS ROBERTS VINOVSKIS LOCOMOTIVE PRODUCTIONS WIDE

Having ruthlessly lain off striking workers, the owner of a maritime company decides to go on a leisurely trip to Italy with his young wife. On the eve before the departure, his luxurious mansion is broken into by one of the sacked workers, a man in an orange jacket. The intruder succeeds at his murderous plans, but it turn out to be only the beginning of a chain of mysterious events that release the demons locked up within him. The young and talented director Aik Karapetian’s feature is the first horror movie filmed in Latvia in the last two decades; it was premiered at the Montreal Fantasy Film Festival in Canada.


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THE ISLE OF SEALS ORIGINAL TITLE

ROŅU SALA LATVIA / 2014 / 6 MIN / ANIMATION / BLACK&WHITE

DIRECTOR

EDMUNDS JANSONS

SCRIPT

EDMUNDS JANSONS

DESIGN

EDMUNDS JANSONS

PRODUCER

SABĪNE ANDERSONE

PRODUCTION COMPANY

ATOM ART

SALES

ATOM ART

In the middle of a grey sea there is the grey Isle of Seals. On the grey island grey hunters lead their grey lives. All here is simple and harsh. Seals and hunters cohabit in a brutal harmony. One day a photographer arrives on the island to document their environment. For him it turns out to be fatally difficult endeavour. Jansons had his debut in animation in 1995, but gained wider recognition with a film based on documentary materials “Little Bird’s Diary”. His “Choir Tour” and “The International Fathers’ Day” have also been noticed abroad, but his latest film was shown at the prestigious Annecy Festival in France. Since 2011, Jansons has been creating the increasingly popular series for kids called “The Shammies”.


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RUCH AND NORIE ORIGINAL TITLE

RUČS UN NORIE LATVIA / 2015 / 65 MIN / DOCUMENTARY / COLOUR

DIRECTOR

INĀRA KOLMANE

SCRIPT

INĀRA KOLMANE

CAMERA PRODUCER

ANDREJS VERHOUSTINSKIS JĀNIS JUHŅĒVIČS, INĀRA KOLMANE, MARTA MANNENBACH

PRODUCTION COMPANY

FILMU STUDIJA DEVIŅI

SALES

FILMU STUDIJA DEVIŅI

Norie, a Japanese anthropology student, comes to Latvia to do a Masters research of the Suiti region. There she meets one of oldest Suiti singers Marija Steimane, also known as Ruch, who doesn’t speak a word of English, but she sings. Norie learns the Latvian language and songs. An anthropological interest evolves into a sincere friendship that lasts even when she returns to Japan: Ruch thinks about Norie, how she is doing “there, far away”, and worries about every earthquake in Japan, while Norie calls Ruch her Latvian grandma, goes to Japanese football games dressed in Latvian national garments, and chants “Go Latvia!” Director and producer Ināra Kolmane has been working in the industry since the late 1980s. Her best known film to date is “My Husband Andrei Sakharov”; meanwhile, “Ruch and Norie” has become a box office hit in Latvia. Currently Kolmane is working on her second feature “Bille”, based on a popular autobiographical novel by Latvian writer Vizma Belševica.


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FACE ORIGINAL TITLE

SEJA LATVIA / 2014 / 14 MIN / ANIMATION / COLOUR

DIRECTOR SCRIPT CAMERA DESIGN PRODUCER PRODUCTION COMPANY SALES

JURĢIS KRĀSONS IVO BRIEDIS MĀRTIŅŠ VEĻA JURĢIS KRĀSONS LAILA PAKALNIŅA, JURĢIS KRĀSONS HARGLA, KRASIVO LIMITED KRASIVO LIMITED

His own reflection in the mirror seemed so important to him until he no longer saw himself in it. Jurģis Krāsons is the most awarded production designer in Latvia, who occasionally turns his efforts to animation. He was nominated as one of the best newcomers for his first film “Black Box”. Krāsons’ second animation “To Swallow a Toad” brought him not only the Latvian national award “Lielais Kristaps” as the best animation director but also a chance to take part in the Cannes Festival’s short film programme.


“COLOUR, LIGHT AND MOVEMENT ARE HIS ALLIES”


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MIKS ZVIRBULIS THE RECIPIENT OF THE LIFETIME ACHIEVEMENT AWARD FOR CONTRIBUTION TO LATVIAN CINEMA

IEVA ROMANOVA, Member of the Board, The Latvian Union of Filmmakers

The 2015 “Lielais Kristaps” Lifetime Achievement Award goes to the outstanding cinematographer Miks Zvirbulis for his work on some 40 documentaries and features, including “Kārkli pelēkie zied” (The Blossom of the Grey Osier, 1961), “Kapteinis Nulle” (Captain Zero, 1964), “Akmens un šķembas” (Rock and Breakstone, 1966), “Elpojiet dziļi” (Take a Deep Breath, 1967), “Klāvs Mārtiņa dēls” (Klāvs, the Son of Mārtiņš, 1970), “Mans draugs – nenopietns cilvēks” (My Friend Is a Superficial Person, 1975), “Tās dullās Paulīnes dēļ” (Because of That Crazy Pauline, 1979), “Akmeņainais ceļš” (Stony Road, 1983), “Bailes” (Fear, 1986), and many other classics. During his creative career he has worked with many excellent Latvian film directors, like Gunārs Piesis, Oļģerts Dunkers, Rolands Kalniņš, Jānis Streičs, Aloizs Brenčs, Gunārs Cilinskis, to name a few. Miks Zvirbulis was born in Riga in 1937 and from the last years of school he knew he wouldn’t want to be a teacher, a doctor, an agriculturist, or an accountant. Young and in love with photography, he went to study at the Film Institute in Moscow and became one of the most productive cinematographers in Latvia. In 1960, together with the film director Gunārs Piesis, he shot his first film, „Salacgrīva”. Miks Zvirbulis is a sign of quality when it comes to capturing cinematic drama, sense of style and visualization. His camera is fluent and rhythmic, sharp and playful, and always expressive. Colour, light and movement were his allies, with which the master has enriched our cinematic language. The films “Akmens un šķembas” and “Elpojiet dziļi” (both directed by Rolands Kalniņš) having spent their time on the censor’s shelf, are vivid examples of his innovative approach and expressiveness. The latter is part of the Latvian Cultural Canon as one of the twelve best features of all time. Miks Zvirbulis is an authority who has his own sense of style and a talent to find solutions to the drama of life. He is known to have been able to keep a high spirit in production teams, could encourage people to work well and with ease, making it possible sometimes with humour or an apt quote, some other times with a question, an advice, or just a look, or a delicious story from the life of fishermen. Having earned trust and honoured by his colleagues, Miks Zvirbulis has led the Latvian Union of Filmmakers for as long as 18 years (1968–1986). During this time the


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FILM STILLS – COURTESY OF THE RIGA FILM MUSEUM PHOTO: JURIS DZENIS

organization became an important player of the industry. A significant role was played by regular critical evaluations of the film production process which took place during the annual meetings and conferences. Together with the director Ansis Epners, they had the idea to establish a national award. And so in 1977, “Lielais Kristaps” was born, an award in the form of a statue made by the sculptor Mārtiņš Zaurs and which was given to the best film as a result of a vote by the members of the Union. The times have brought changes to the award’s appearance; the awarding process has grown into a national film festival and a celebration for the public as well, while “Lielais Kristaps” has become an recognized brand in the Latvian film industry, and receiving the award is a proud moment for every filmmaker. We salute Miks Zvirbulis for the life spent in the art of film, for his stand, friendship, for his films and creative energy. Thank you for “Lielais Kristaps”!


DAUKA $1,0Ă&,-$6),/08678',-$


ATTĒLS NO LKA RĪGAS KINO MUZEJA KRĀJUMA. FOTO: JURIS DZENIS

122 | RIGA IFF SPECIAL EVENT

FOUR WHITE SHIRTS (TAKE A DEEP BREATH) ORIGINAL TITLE

ČETRI BALTI KREKLI (ELPOJIET DZIĻI...)

LATVIA / 1967 / 80 MIN / FICTION / COLOUR DIRECTOR

ROLANDS KALNIŅŠ

SCRIPT

GUNĀRS PRIEDE

CAMERA

MIKS ZVIRBULIS

CAST PRODUCTION COMPANY SALES

ULDIS PŪCĪTIS, DINA KUPLE, LĪGA LIEPIŅA, ARNOLDS LINIŅŠ, PAULS BUTKĒVIČS RĪGAS KINOSTUDIJA NATIONAL FILM CENTRE OF LATVIA

In his spare time, telephone installer Caesar writes poetry and composes songs. He and his friends have formed a musical ensemble, but to be allowed performing in front of audience, the ensemble and the songs have to be officially approved and authorised. Anita Sondore, a commissioner of the Culture Committee, listens to Caesar’s songs and hastily critiques them, but later, realizing her mistake, is unable to stop the steamroller of public humiliation of the young artist. More than any of his Latvian contemporaries’ work, Rolands Kalniņš’s films are in tune with the formal, stylistic and conceptual trends of his time – the French and Czech new wave films. This, of course, is also thanks to Miks Zvirbulis sensitive camera, immortalizing the streets of the 1960s’ Riga and the contemporaries of the filmmakers – artists, poets and actual musicians, who appear in cameo roles. The playful title sequence of the film has become iconic in the context of Latvian film history.


RIGA IFF SPECIAL EVENTS


124 | RIGA IFF SPECIAL EVENTS

1977

2015

1968

2015


RIGA IFF SPECIAL EVENTS | 125

IN SEARCH OF CINEMAS LOST

ZIGMĀRS JAUJA

“One of Riga cinema, Kino 52, is expected to close soon, DB learned from a spokesperson at the theatre, Ilvars Gudrimovičs. He revealed the eventual closure was already foreseen two years ago when it became known that the first multiplex would soon open in Riga,” wrote a Latvian business daily Dienas Bizness on November 7, 2003. What this short piece in the paper actually did was mark an end of a century-long era. At the time the only single-screen cinemas left in Riga were Kinogalerija and Rīga, perhaps because of a still active financial support from the municipality and the State. The era itself was a truly great one: as early as the late Thirties there were some forty cinemas operating in various locations across Riga. After the war the number went down to 24, but in the following years of the Soviet occupation it grew again, with theatres opening in newly developed neighbourhoods, such as Ķengarags, Iļģuciems, and Sarkandaugava. In the period after the war until the reestablishment of the Free State the number of cinemas again reached forty. The local cinema often became a central meeting spot. For example, at 2 Zemitānu Square (known as Berlin Platz, during the German occupation; the Square of July 21st, during the Soviet times) there stands the building of Teika cinema, built in 1938. Despite the fact that the theatre has been closed for already ten years, and portraits of famous film stars that lined the lobby’s walls are now replaced with vending stands selling male and female underwear, its façade is still adorned with a large sign that says KINO TEIKA, almost as if these premises were still hoping to experience a rebirth. After I posted several pictures of the theatre on my Facebook page, In Search of Cinemas Lost, many visitors expressed an opinion that the cinema should be reopened; every next comment under the pictures brought back to me many long-forgotten memories of how we, the neighbourhood kids, would often go to the movies after school. The school year was coming to an end and the May sun would warm the air, so much so that we would have an irresistible urge to buy a ticket to the soonest film and, enjoying the pleasant coolness of the dark auditorium, watch yet another Soviet western or an Indian action movie. I would soon begin to recognize the names of people leaving the comments on my page as former students of the nearby Teika comprehensive – my former schoolmates; I would remember the everyday life of the neighbourhood, the local convenience store, and the milkshakes we would have there.


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Movie screens in Riga

and their distribution over neighbourhoods from the start of the 20th century until Autumn 2015

1901. A small movie theatre is built in Pushkin Boulevard, by the name of 'Illusion'

50

Mid-1910. At least 52 movie theatre projects await approval of the Riga City Construction Board. Not all are approved, but many are still built (even illegally) 1930s. Elizabetes Street is nicknamed 'the Broadway of Riga'. The city has 37 movie theatres, 6 of them are located around Elizabetes Street

1946. There are only 16 movie theatres left in Riga

2015. There are 3 multiplexes in Riga, and altogether - 30 movie Right bank, not including the Centre screens

Neighbourhoods

Left bank, not including the Centre City Centre Cinema 'Splendid Palace'

Mid-1970s. The highest number of screens in the postwar time. There are 36 movie theaters in Riga

After a long time a new art-house theatre appears: 'Kino Bize'

2003. Multiplex 'Forum Cinemas' is built. With 14 screens, it occupies the biggest share of movie screening market in Riga

0 1900

1914

1939

1976

1990

2003

2015

Meanwhile I was also thinking that other neighbourhoods in Riga had perhaps similar, yet still their very own, atmosphere; for example, in the Old Town cinemas Aina or Komjaunietis; central cinemas like 21. jūlijs, Palladium, Rīga, Spartaks, Pionieris, Lāčplēsis, Daile, Blāzma, Džerzinska klubs, or Gaisma. Or the cinemas in Sarkandaugava; or those in Āgenskalns, like Sarkanā ausma and Oktobris; the Torņkalns cinema Liesma; the ones in Jugla, Iļģuciems, or the Moscow district; in Dzirciems, Šampēteris, Čiekurkalns, or Bolderāja; as well as the seasonal open-air cinemas in the Arkādija park, Mežaparks, and the one near the Vecāķi beach. If an impatient reader were to ask me what else great there was besides the fact that one could travel across the entire the city to find in one of the many cinemas the film one was really looking for, I would say that, in addition to the pleasure of exploring different parts of the city, the viewer was to have a special cinematic experience often bearing the character of the neighbourhood he was actually in. As mentioned by many film connoisseurs of the time, it was a cinematic experience with an added value. Perhaps what added the value were people of the neighbourhood and their social environment. For instance, the quiet and polite nature of the people of Teika could also be felt in the auditorium of their cinema. Whereas according to one of the comments left on my Facebook page by some Ilze Verhaeghe, “It was in Maskachka’s cinema Udarnik that I first saw “Andrei Rublev”; there was a furnace in the corner, nothing to breathe, and the public was rather drunk.” This is the story behind the photo exhibition of 28 cinemas; it is about an era now gone, about what those cinemas look nowadays, and that they once brought a special kind of experience to their neighbourhoods; and that, along with the passing time, they can disappear not just from our life but from our memories, too.


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RIGA IFF SPECIAL PRE-OPENING SCREENING

DEPARTMENT OF AUDIOVISUAL ARTS OF THE LATVIAN ACADEMY OF CULTURE STUDENT FILM PROGRAMME AFTER HOURS OCTOBER 15, AT 19:19 CINEMA SPLENDID PALACE, BIG HALL

It does not mean that school’s over and everybody goes home. The trademark of our school is that each and every task, no matter how specific or confined by rules it might be, the students do as if shooting a small movie. During the study years, a collection of small movies is created – created voluntarily or through creative anguish, for the enjoyment of authors themselves, for their friends and classmates. This is just a small part of it. VIENA KADRA FILMA (UZ CEĻA) / ONE SHOT MOVIE (ON THE ROAD) Director and camera MĀRTIŅŠ JURĒVICS / 2013 / 4 MIN SISTĒMA / THE SYSTEM Director ARMANDS ZAČS / Camera JĀNIS REINFELDS / 2010 / DOCUMENTARY /13 MIN KK-2678 Director UĢIS OLTE / Camera JURIS ZEMĪTIS / 2006 / FICTION / 16 MIN LIFTS / THE ELEVATOR Director LIENE LINDE / Camera DAINIS JURAGA / 2012 / FICTION / 2 MIN KINONOVELE “PAGĀTNE SAUC” / CINE-NOVELETTE “THE CALL OF THE PAST” Director PĒTERIS ROZĪTIS / Camera KĀRLIS JAUNZEMS / 2015 / DOCUMENTARY / 7 MIN LOKŠĀVĒJS / THE ARCHER Director and camera RINALDS ZELTS / 2014 / DOCUMENTARY A / 13 MIN PAŠPORTRETS / SELF-PORTRAIT Director GATIS UNGURS / Camera GUNDARS JĀKOBSONS / 2013 / FICTION / 5 MIN TERITORIJA / THE TERRITORY Director VENTS GRĪNBAUMS / 2015 / FICTION / 17 MIN REBEKKA / REBECCA Director DĀVIS DREIMANIS / Camera IVO SKANSTIŅŠ / 2015 / FICTION / 19 MIN PLENČI / PLENCI Director GATIS UNGURS / Camera KRISTAPS DZENIS / 2015 / FICTION / 24 MIN


“NO ONE DISCOVERED ANYBODY. NO ONE NUDGED ANYONE. SHE DISCOVERED HERSELF.”


INGRID BERGMAN – 100 | 129

THE FATEFUL ROLE

ZANE DZENE

On November 17, 1936, Ingrid Bergman wrote in her diary, “I did not have to be so scared. The critics were all good. This time there is not one which says a bad word about me. They said of course Gösta Ekman was very good – they expected that – but the surprise and the sensation was Ingrid Bergman. I am so happy.” She had just played the role that would make the actress an international star, and however much David O. Selznick, one of the legendary Hollywood producers, would later try to own the title of having discovered her, in fact she herself was the one who discovered Ingrid Bergman. Joseph Goebbels hinted to his subordinates that Germany would possibly soon have a new film star. Her mother was German, so “the papers were fine”; however, while the Germans took time to think, Gustaf Molander had made a different decision. He would give the lead female role in the new drama “Intermezzo” to Bergman, who had proven her talent with the previous five roles, and pair her together with the star of Swedish theatre and film, Gösta Ekman, without even knowing what change this would bring to the 20-year-old actress. The story was nothing original. A world-famous violinist, losing the flame in his private life, falls in love with his daughter’s piano teacher, but soon realizes he is not ready to abandon his wife, with whom he has spent so many years together. In mid-1930s, such a melodramatic twist meant one thing – people would storm cinemas, and this was clear to both Molander and Ekman; besides there were other reasons for them to be so optimistic. Above it all was music; the main theme from “Intermezzo” would stay for entire decades with many viewers who’d seen Molander’s film, but even this gave way before the image of Ingrid Bergman as well as the topic that, according to the sensibility of the times, could melt the hardest of hearts. And yet none of the film’s episodes reveal the drama behind the production process. Each night Ekman would perform at the theatre, so the filming would only begin after midnight and continue even after the first signs of dawn. Often those involved in the production were ready to give up on everything, and each time Bergman appeared to be the saviour, having played the episode perfectly, after which Molander would finally call it a day. She, who had no formal education, had something much more valuable – an emotional intelligence, and Bergman would endow her characters with it. After the premiere, Molander confessed that the key to the success of “Intermezzo” was Ingrid Bergman. “No one discovered anybody. No one nudged anyone. She discovered


130 | INGRID BERGMAN – 100

herself,” said the director, graciously, and the viewers agreed. In 1937, the Swedes voted her the most popular actress (she left behind her fellow Swede Greta Garbo, who had already been working in Hollywood for the past ten years) and the film’s crossing of the Atlantic Ocean caused a significant interest in the young actress. “Variety” would later write that Bergman was destined to shine in Hollywood. At Selznick’s office in New York there worked one Kay Brown and her assistant Elsa Neuberger. Their duties involved searching for plays adaptable to the big screen, watching foreign films, and finding new talents for their boss. A young man, who had just returned from Sweden, told Elsa how his parents were almost crazy about “Intermezzo” and the girl who played in it. “Perhaps you need to see her,” the man suggested. Elsa was the first to go the cinema, followed by Kay, who later wired Selznick, insisting he should buy the rights to “Intermezzo” and think about an American adaptation, perhaps with Bergman in one of the lead roles. She got hold of the reviews of the young actress, her photos and the film itself, but Selznick was all immersed in working on “Gone with the Wind” and “Rebecca” and only after much persuading was ready to see the film in a company of a few colleagues. Raymond Cloon would later say that “Intermezzo” resembled a soap opera, but Bergman was excellent and everyone urged Selznick to do everything to bring her to Hollywood. The producer objected by saying that the screening was meant to decide whether to remake “Intermezzo”, not whether they should bring another actress to Hollywood, but Cloon did not concede: “Yes, of course, but we’ll remake it with Bergman.” Meanwhile, the young Swede caught some attention in London, as well as other Hollywood studios; from Brown’s reviews Selznick eventually realized that if he didn’t act quickly, someone else would sign her soon. He was in too high an opinion of himself to allow for that. So again Bergman had a chance to live through the role of Anita Hoffman, in 1939, when Hollywood’s version was made, with Leslie Howard in the leading male role. The star was born. During her long career Bergman worked with immense success in the States and Europe; she acted in films as well in the theatre and television, receiving three Oscars, four Golden Globes, two Emmies, the Volpi Cup in Venice, and a Tony. But that’s another story; a story of a Hollywood diva, and not of a simple girl from Sweden who dreamt to become an actress.


INGRID BERGMAN – 100 | 131

INTERMEZZO ORIGINAL TITLE

INTERMEZZO SWEDEN / 1936 / 93 MIN / FICTION / BLACK&WHITE

DIRECTOR SCRIPT CAMERA CAST PRODUCTION COMPANY SALES

GUSTAF MOLANDER GUSTAF MOLANDER, GÖSTA EKMAN ÅKE DAHLQVIST GÖSTA EKMAN, INGRID BERGMAN, INGA TIDBLAD SVENSK FILMINDUSTRI SWEDISH FILM INSTITUTE

A world-renowned violinist falls for his daughter’s piano teacher and invites her to accompany him in his next concert tour. Although Anita’s feelings for Brandt are deep and true, she renounces him – an affair would damage Brandt’s career and family life. Upon returning to his wife and children, Brandt realizes that his infatuation with Anita was just an intermezzo in his life. This emotionally nuanced drama by Gustaf Molander became the starting point of Ingrid Bergman’s Hollywood career – three years later she reprised the role of Anita in the Hollywood remake of the film, produced by David O. Selznick.


132 | RIGA IFF SPECIAL EVENTS

THE NORDIC COUNCIL OF MINISTERS’ OFFICE IN LATVIA PRESENTS THE SECRETS OF NORDIC NOIR

CINEMA SPLENDID PALACE, CAFE FILM NOIR OCTOBER 20, 2015, AT 16:00

Swedish crime fiction expert Kerstin Bergman talks about what Nordic Noir is, what distinguishes it from other crime fiction, and why it has become so popular all over the world. She also talks about the characteristic features of the crime fiction traditions from the different Nordic countries and presents some of the most current trends of Nordic Noir. Dr. Kerstin Bergman is a Swedish crime fiction scholar, a literary critic, and a member of the Swedish Academy of Crime Fiction. She is the author of Swedish Crime Fiction: The Making of Nordic Noir (2014), the editor of Deckarnas svenska landskap: Från Skåne till Lappland (2014, Regions of Swedish crime fiction: From Scania to Lapland), and co-author of Kriminallitteratur: Utveckling, genrer, perspektiv (2011, with S. Kärrholm, Crime fiction: Developments, genres, perspectives). She has also written numerous popular and scholarly articles on Swedish and International crime fiction (in English and Swedish). As an expert on crime fiction, a writer and lecturer, she runs CrimeGarden and blogs (in Swedish) about crime fiction at crimegarden.se. The presentation will be accompanied by the screening of “Insomnia” (1997) at cafe Film Noir at 17:00. Entrance is free to both the presentation and the film screening.


RIGA IFF SPECIAL EVENTS | 133

INSOMNIA ORIGINAL TITLE

INSOMNIA NORWAY / 1997 / 96 MIN / FICTION / COLOUR

DIRECTOR SCRIPT CAMERA CAST PRODUCER PRODUCTION COMPANY SALES

ERIK SKJOLDBJÆRG NIKOLAJ FROBENIUS, ERIK SKJOLDBJÆRG ERLING THURMANN-ANDERSEN STELLAN SKARSGÅRD, SVERRE ANKER OUSDAL, BJØRN FLOBERG, GISKEN ARMAND TOMAS BACKSTRÖM, PETTER J. BORGLI, TOM REMLOV NORSK FILM FILMPARKEN AS

Inspector Engström is investigating a murder at a Norwegian city behind the Arctic Circle. While chasing after the suspected murderer, Engström, who is suffering from severe insomnia, accidentally kills his colleague. He tries to conceal his involvement, but when he finds out that the suspect was a witness to the crime, Engström goes deeper and deeper in a dangerous downward spiral of lies. The Hollywood remake of this film, directed by Christopher Nolan in 2002, featured Al Pacino, Robin Williams and Hilary Swank.


134 | RIGA IFF SPECIAL EVENTS

CREATIVE EUROPE MEDIA LATVIA AND NATIONAL FILM CENTRE OF LATVIA OFFER WORKSHOP ON MARKETING AND DISTRIBUTION OF EUROPEAN FILMS

CINEMA SPLENDID PALACE OCTOBER 16, 2015

Every year in Europe more than 1000 feature films are produced, but most of them stay within the borders of their production countries. Also Latvia falls into this category, as very few films have travelled across our borders commercially. In the Creative Europe MEDIA workshop we will explore the present situation on distribution of European films in Latvia and other European countries, of the Creative Europe MEDIA support for film distribution, of the local distribution and marketing activities, of the chances of Latvian films to start the transnational distribution path. The key speaker of the workshop – Christian Have from Have Communications in Denmark – will share his know-how on effective marketing tools for films. Christian says this on the goals of his company: “To us, communication isn’t simply about shouting as loudly as you can in an increasingly chaotic media landscape. To us, communication is about credibility. About substance. About setting agendas. Within the world of culture, business, politics – and in society as a whole. Our client list is versatile, and our main fields of expertise are storytelling, strategic development of brands, experience-based communication, and direct media contact. Three decades’ worth of experience has made us one of the leading communications agencies in Scandinavia, and over the course of a year we handle 150 projects. We ensure that the stories of our clients have an impact in the public sphere. We popularize substance, and we ensure media interest, whether a project is high or low profile. We navigate safely and determined through the media landscape, and we guarantee visibility that creates added value – and visibility that makes a difference.” We look forward to the experience of Christian Have, as well as other speakers and we are positive Films for Latvia will travel at a speed of light! CHRISTIAN HAVE (Denmark) is the founder (in 1983), owner, former CEO (until 2010) and current Creative Director of Have Communications. Christian Have has worked on a highly extensive list of projects, including “In A Better World”, the Academy Award-winning feature film by Susanne Bier. He has written several books on communication within the cultural field, audience behavior and the celebrity culture. Associated professor at Copenhagen Business School and Aalborg University.


RIGA IFF SPECIAL EVENTS | 135

EUROPEAN SCRIPT MEETING

24 – 25 OCTOBER, 2015 CAFE FILM NOIR

“European Script Meeting” (ESM) is a creative partnership building event for film industry. The event’s aim is to foster international collaboration in the story development stage by connecting possible future colleagues: it gathers internationally acclaimed, experienced screenwriters and film producers, directors and studios from all over the world for individual meetings. Meanwhile the ESM participants are taking part in all RigaIFF networking events and take location tours around Riga and the closest neighborhood. For a wider audience there are lectures, seminars, case studies and workshops on the international convertability of stories.

PROGRAMME 24 October, Cafe Film Noir, from 10:00 – 18:00 Individual meetings. Entrance for participants only.

25 October, Cafe Film Noir, from 10:00 – 18:00 Lectures, seminars, case study and workshop. Free entrance.

Working language: English Phone: +371 26551248, e-mail: scriptmeeting@rigaiff.lv Participants list and events timetable: esm.rigaiff.lv


136 | INDEX

COUNTRIES Argentina Parabellum Austria Museum “Revolution” Parabellum When It Blinds, Open Your Eyes

33 105 33 98

The Golden Legend The Lobster Louder Than Bombs The Magic Mountain Mustang My Mother Peace to Us in Our Dreams The Summer of Sangaile Tale of Tales

83 32 53, 71 15 17 31 16 21 27

Belgium Diary of a Chambermaid The Event The Golden Legend

30 19 83

Brazil Corda

83

Bulgaria Aferim!

26

Canada The Cat in the Bag Golden Gloves Shouk

41 40 81

Greece The Lobster Schoolyard

32 75

Czech Republic Aferim!

26

Hungary Son of Saul

34

Ireland The Lobster

32

Denmark Hotel The Hour of the Lynx Louder Than Bombs Northwest Rams Estonia Hi, Rasma! House of Cards M.O.J. Secret Society of Souptown To Light

54 50 53, 71 56 14, 48 110 88 114 64 89

Finland They Have Escaped

55

France Aferim! Chronicle of a Summer Diary of a Chambermaid

26 43 30

Georgia Double Aliens

111

Germany Domino Effect Mustang My Skinny Sister Safe Space The Satanic Thicket – TWO

100 17 70 76 82

Island Rams

14, 48

Israel Shouk

81

Italy Chorus My Mother Tale of Tales Young Lions of Gypsy

78 31 27 74

Latvia Double Aliens Earth is the Lonliest Planet Face Four White Shirts (Take a Deep Breath) Hi, Rasma!

111 88 117 122 110


INDEX | 137

How Shammies Built a House How Shammies Got Well How Shammies Played Hide and Seek How Shammies Tidied-Up How Shammies Were Getting Married The Isle of Seals It’s About Time Lazarus M.O.J. My Six Million Dollar Father Plenči Ruch and Norie Six Feet Above Lithuania Dembava I’m Twenty Something Peace to Us in Our Dreams The Summer of Sangaile Montenegro Shelters Netherlands The Event The Lobster The Summer of Sangaile Among Us They Have Escaped Shipwreck New Zealand Slow West

60, 61 60, 61 60, 61 60, 61 60, 61 115 112 88 114 113 89 116 87 87 87 16 21 5 19 32 21 77 55 79 29

Norway Insomnia 133 Yes We Love 80 Karin and the Counselor 80 Out of Nature 18, 51 Operation Arctic 59 The Last Sentence 52 Morningbird and Murmelton on Winter Holiday 62 Louder Than Bombs 53, 71 Poland The Magic Mountain Domino Effect Endemic’s Greed Home Sound of My Soul Object

15 100 76 74 81 79

Qatar Mustang

17

Romania Aferim! The Magic Mountain Art

26 15 77

Russia Children of Iosif Iconoscope Let Me Just Be Peace to Us in Our Dreams Museum “Revolution” Angels of Revolution

97 103 104 16 105 20

Sweden Ingrid Bergman - In Her Own Words Intermeco What if... The Hour of the Lynx My Skinny Sister The Last Sentence Broken Hill Blues Hotel The Boy with the Golden Pants

49 131 58 50 70 52 72 54 63

Switzerland The Breath Grozny Blues

78 102

Turkey Mustang Ukraine Two Days in Ilovaisk Museum “Revolution”

17 99 105

United Kingdom 1+1 Tale of Tales Amy Slow West The Lobster

82 27 28 29 32

Uruguay Parabellum

33

USA Airport Donetsk Amy Faces USSR Enthusiasm (Symphony of the Don Basin)

101 28 42 39


138 | INDEX

DIRECTORS Ābele, Jānis Alkabetz, Gil Altshuler-Kurchatov, Dmitry Andreae, Monika Babintseva, Nataliya Bakowski, Wojciech Bareisa, Laurynas Bartas, Sharunas Bellucci, Nicola Björkman, Stig Bøe-Waal, Grethe Borowa, Agnieszka Briedis, Ivo Carpignano, Jonas Cassavetes, John Damian, Anca Dragasaki, Rinio Dziedzic, Natalia Erastov, Andrei Ergüven, Deniz Gamze Fedorchenko, Alexey Ganuschak, Ruslan Garrone, Matteo Giæver, Ole Groulx, Gilles Guedes, Tiago Hákonarson, Grímur Hambäck, Linda Hans, Willy Heidebäck, Marika Helland, Annette Saugestad Hendrikx, Guido Jacquot, Benoit Jansons, Edmunds Jude, Radu Kaiser, Fabian Kalniņš, Rolands Kapadia, Asif Karapetian, Aik Kavaïté, Alanté Kavtaradze, Marija Knibbe, Morgan Kolmane, Ināra Kragh-Jacobsen, Søren

87 82 97 80 105 81 87 16 102 49 59 74 112 74 42 15 75 76 101 17 20 99 27 18, 51 39, 41 78 14, 48 58 82 58 62 77 30 60, 115 26 78 122 28 114 21 87 79 116 50

Krāsons, Jurģis Langseth, Lisa Lanthimos, Yorgos Lemhagen, Ella Lenken, Sanna Lesmes, Carlos E. Linde, Liene Lobato, Pablo Löcker, Ivette Loznitsa, Sergei Maclean, John Manskiy, Vitaly Molander, Gustaf Moreno, Dotan Moretti, Nanni Morin, Edgar Nemes, László Niewiera, Elwira Noer, Michael Norlin, Sofia Nurmamed, Sergei Olte, Uģis Ozoliņa, Ieva Paju, Margus Pakalniņa, Laila Riekstiņš, Kristians Rinner, Lukas Valenta Rosolowski, Piotr Rouch, Jean Rux, Zora Salatic, Ivan Särak, Nora Sitaru, Adrian Skibinska, Paulina Skjoldbjærg, Erik Smolders, Oliver Trier, Joachim Troell, Jan Troshinkin, Matvey Ungurs, Gatis Valkeapää, J.-P. Vertov, Dziga Vold, Marte Witzo, Hallvar

117 54 32 63 70 88 88 83 98 19 29 103 131 81 31 43 34 100 56 72 97 111 113 64 110 88 33 100 43 76 75 89 77 79 133 83 53, 71 52 104 89 55 40 18, 51 80


INDEX | 139

FILM TITLES 1+1 82 Aferim! 26 Airport Donetsk 101 Among Us 77 Amy 28 Angels of Revolution 20 Art 77 Broken Hill Blues 72 Children of Iosif 97 Chorus 78 Chronicle of a Summer 43 Corda 83 Dembava 87 Diary of a Chambermaid 30 Domino Effect 100 Double Aliens 111 Earth is the Lonliest Planet 88 Endemic’s Greed 76 Enthusiasm (Symphony of the Don Basin) 39 Face 117 Faces 42 Four White Shirts (Take a Deep Breath) 122 Golden Gloves 40 Grozny Blues 102 Hi, Rasma! 110 Home 74 Hotel 54 House of Cards 88 How Shammies Built a House 60, 61 How Shammies Got Well 60, 61 How Shammies Played Hide and Seek 60, 61 How Shammies Tidied-up 60, 61 How Shammies Were Getting Married 60, 61 I’m Twenty Something 87 Iconoscope 103 Ingrid Bergman - In Her Own Words 49 Insomnia 133 Intermeco 131 It’s About Time 112 Karin and the Counselor 80 Lazarus 88 Let Me Just Be 104 Louder Than Bombs 53, 71 M.O.J. 114 Morningbird and Murmelton on

Winter Holiday Museum “Revolution” Mustang My Mother My Six Million Dollar Father My Skinny Sister Northwest Object Operation Arctic Out of Nature Parabellum Peace to Us in Our Dreams Plenči Rams Ruch and Norie Safe Space Schoolyard Secret Society of Souptown Shelters Shipwreck Shouk Six Feet Above Slow West Son of Saul Sound of My Soul Tale of Tales The Boy with the Golden Pants The Breath The Cat in the Bag The Event The Golden Legend The Hour of the Lynx The Isle of Seals The Last Sentence The Lobster The Magic Mountain The Satanic Thicket – TWO The Summer of Sangaile They Have Escaped To Light Two Days in Ilovaisk What if... When It Blinds, Open Your Eyes Yes We Love Young Lions of Gypsy

62 105 17 31 113 70 56 79 59 18, 51 33 16 89 14, 48 116 76 75 64 75 79 81 87 29 34 81 27 63 78 41 19 83 50 115 52 32 15 82 21 55 89 99 58 98 80 74


140 | INDEX

LATVIAN PRODUCTION COMPANIES A.Bley Film Studio +371 29455955 aija@bley.lv Air Productions +371 29299353 liga.gaisa@airproductions.lv Animācijas Brigāde +371 67520770 ab.studija@apollo.lv Anša Epnera Studija AVE +371 67370087 z.ivars@gmail.com Art Novo +371 29464262 info@artnovofilmproduction. com Atom Art + 371 67612709 sabine@atomart.lv Avantis Promo +371 67317464 inga@avantis.lv Balti +371 67804160 info@balti.lv Baltic Film Services +371 6 7790390 info@bfs.eu.com Baltic Pine Films +371 67888502 info@balticfilms.com Biedrība “Jaunās demokrātijas centrs” +371 29195876 antra.gaile@gmail.com

Boheme International +371 67313510 Brox Media +371 67704191 rita@brox.lv Camera Obscura +371 26306688 camera.obscura@inbox.lv Deviņi +371 67241688 devini@parks.lv Ego Media +371 67291720 guntis@egomedia.lv Eiropas Dokumentālā Kino simpoziji +371 67210022 pipars@mailbox.riga.lv

Forma Pro Films +371 27775814 info@formaprofilms.com FreshStep Productions +371 27108152 info@freshstep.lv Ģilde +371 67210022 pipars@mailbox.riga.lv Hansa Media +371 67217092 info@hansamedia.lv Happy Plum’s Trust +371 29484838 meirans@gmail.com Hargla +371 29235618 laila.pakalnina@inbox.lv

Elm Media +371 28366800 elmmedia@elmmedia.lv

Jura Podnieka Studija +371 67216967 jps@jps.lv

FA Filma +371 26995300 fafilma@fafilma.lv

Kaupo Filma +371 67217722 arvi@btv.lv

Fenixfilm +371 29475390 fenixfilm@inbox.lv

Kinolats +371 26440907 art.is@apollo.lv

Film Angels Studio +371 67331921 studio@angels.lv

Klipu filmu darbnīca +371 26480909 kfd@kfd.lv

Fly for Film +371 29466250 kaspars.brakis@gmail.com

Krasivo Limited +371 29725013 jurgis@department.lv

F.O.R.M.A. +371 29219041 s.forma@studioforma.lv

Krukfilms +371 22051060 info@krukfilms.com


INDEX | 141

Labvakar +371 67521414 birojs@labvakar.lv

Rīgas Kinostudija +371 67790303 office@studio.lv

Subjektiv Filma +371 29299564 subjektivfilma@inbox.lv

Locomotive Productions + 371 29298667 office@locomotive.lv

Rija +371 67362656 info@rijafilms.lv

Tanka +371 26156356 alise@tanka.lv

Lunohod +371 29141832 vl@lunohod.lv

Screen Vision +371 29293688 laima@screenvision.lv

TAL FILM +371 27775814 maxims.pavlovs@gmail.com

SCUBA Films +371 29449464 sandijss@hotmail.com

Tarhun Sisters +371 26569418 zane@tarhunsisters.lv

Sibīrijas Bērni +371 67629960 dzintrag@inbox.lv

Tasse Film +371 26156356 alise@tasse.lv, aija@tasse.lv

Mistrus Media +371 67313314 birojs@mistrusmedia.lv Nida Filma +371 29296914 office@nidafilma.lv Nomadi +371 29637192 kristaburane@inbox.lv PARUS Studio +371 29462055 info@parusstudio.com Platforma +371 27222009 alina.sikstule-talarova@ platforma.lv Red Dot Media +371 67188440 rdm@reddotmedia.lv Riverbed +371 29473007 info@riverbed.lv

Studija 2 +371 29231357 studija.divi@gmail.com Studija Centrums +371 29457957 bruno.ascuks@ studijacentrums.lv Studija NPGD studijanpgd@gmail.com Studija Ruuk +372 53433032 studija.ruuk@gmail.com

Terra Europa +371 29299564 terra.europa@inbox.lv Urga +371 29107124 viesturs@2annas.lv Vides Filmu Studija +371 67503588 vfs@vfs.lv Vilks Post Production +371 66018014 denis@vilks-post.com

Studija Trīs +371 67537996

Visio +371 67505470 visio@versija.lv

Style Masters Studio +371 67814241 sms@stylemasters.lv

Vizuālās Kultūras klubs +37129722602 info@vkklubs.org


142 | INDEX

INTERNATIONAL SALES 29th February Film Company Ekaterinburg, Russia +7 343 2571661 A-One Films Baltic Vilnius, Lithuania +370 67340590 giedre@a-onefilms.lt ACME Film Latvia Riga, Latvia +371 67338027 info@acmefilm.lv ACME Film Lithuania Kaunas, Lithuania +370 37333433 film@acmefilm.lt Atom Art Riga, Latvia + 371 67612709 sabine@atomart.lv ATOMS & VOID Den Haag, Netherlands +31 70 3509292 atomypustota.info@gmail.com Austrian Film Museum Vienna, Austria +43 15337054 kontakt@filmmuseum.at Autlook Filmsales Vienna, Austria +43 720 346934 peter@autlookfilms.com Babylon’13 Kiev, Ukraine info@babylon13.com Beta Cinema GmbH Munich, Germany +49 89 673469828 beta@betacinema.com

Danish Culture Institute Copenhagen, Denmark +45 33135448 dankultur@dankultur.dk

Latvijas Kultūras Akadēmija Riga, Latvia +371 67809532 zirgupasts@lka.edu.lv

Danish Film Institute Copenhagen, Denmark +45 33743400 dfi@dfi.dk

Letter To Fest Distribution

Filmparken AS Oslo, Norway +47 67525300 email@filmparken.no Filmu studija Deviņi Riga, Latvia +371 67241688 devini@parks.lv НО Фонд этногеографических исследований Moscow, Russia +7 916 6740654 ethnofund@mail.ru Glavkino Moscow, Russia +7 495 2255883 info@glavkino.ru Hargla Company Riga, Latvia +371 29235618 laila.pakalnina@inbox.lv Kino Bize Riga, Latvia maris.prombergs@kinobize.lv KinoKi Krasivo Limited Riga, Latvia +371 29725013 jurgis@department.lv

Mistrus Media Riga, Latvia +371 67313314 birojs@mistrusmedia.lv Nacionālais Kino centrs Riga, Latvia +371 67358875 zigita.saulite@nfc.gov.lv Nafta Films Tallinn, Estonia +372 6836660 info@nafta.ee National Film Board of Canada Montreal, Canada distribution@nfb.ca NonStop Entertainment Stockholm, Sweden + 46 8 40010000 info@nonstopentertainment.com Norwegian Film Institute Oslo, Norway + 47 22474500 post@nfi.no Pascale Ramonda Paris, France +33 6 62013241 pascale@pascaleramonda.com Patra Spanou Dusseldorf, Germany patra.spanou@yahoo.com


INDEX | 143

Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty Prague, Czech Republic +420 221121111 levisonj@rferl.org Riga International Film Festival Riga, Latvia info@rigaiff.lv Rusreport Moscow, Russia +7 499 157-90-51 roman@rusreport.com Sixpackfilm Vienna, Austria +43 152609900 office@sixpackfilm.com

soap factory GmbH Basel, Switzerland +41 616320050 film@soapfactory.ch

Tony Lytle Media Sales London, United Kingdom +44 0 208 892 4265 tony@tonylytlemedia.com

Spektrs Riga, Latvia +371 26033995 moosatov@gmail.com

Tamasa Distribution Paris, France +33 1 43590101

Studija Kinema Vilnius, Lithuania +370 65388512 studija@kinema.lt

VFS Films Riga, Latvia +371 67503588 vfs@vfs.lv

Swedish Film Institute Stockholm, Sweden +46 8 6651100 registrator@sfi.se

WIDE Paris, France +33 1 53950464 infos@widemanagement.com

Swedish Institute Stockholm, Sweden +46 8 4537800 si@si.se

The Yellow Affair Helsinki, Finland +358 50 3600350 sigrid@yellowaffair.com


Profile for Riga International Film Festival

Riga IFF catalogue 2015 (ENG)  

This is the digitised English print version of the festival catalogue, 2015. All of the films, all of the programmes, events, indexed inform...

Riga IFF catalogue 2015 (ENG)  

This is the digitised English print version of the festival catalogue, 2015. All of the films, all of the programmes, events, indexed inform...

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