With such titles as Bartosz M. Kowalski’s Playground, Andrius Blaževičius’ The Saint and Hana Jušić’ Quit Staring At My Plate, Warsaw Film Festival puts spotlight on new filmmakers. Judging by their features, the future of cinema looks bright.
PARK, dir. Sofia Exarchou (Greece, Poland) Eastern European Premiere
PLAYGROUND/PLAC ZABAW, dir. Bartosz M. Kowalski (Poland)
THE SAINT/SVENTASIS, dir. Andrius Blaževičius (Lithuania, Poland) World Premiere
ANISHOARA/ANISOARA, dir. Ana-Felicia Scutelnicu (Germany, Moldavia) Eastern European Premiere
Anishoara is 15 years old and lives in a beautiful old village in Moldova. Alone with her old grandfather Petru and her little brother Andrei life is calm but archaic. In summer she and her friends make a trip to the melon harvest, where she feels for the first time the overwhelming sensation of first love.
Ana-Felicia Scutelnicu (Chișinău, 1978) is a Moldovan film director. After living four years in Benin, West Africa, she moved to Berlin and enrolled at the German Film and Television Academy Berlin. Her short films BETWEEN WALLS/ÎNTRE ZIDURI and BACKYARD/HINTERHOF screened at international festivals and won numerous awards. ANISHOARA/ANISOARA is her graduation film.
FRAGMENTS OF LUCÌA/FRAGMENTOS DE LUCÌA, dir. Jorge Yacoman (Chile) International Premiere
A young woman suffering from bipolar disorder receives a letter from the biological mother she has never met. She decides to look for her and the jigsaw puzzle of her unknown family history finally starts to come together.
Jorge Yacoman (Santiago de Chile, 1988) is a Chilean director and screenwriter. He has written seven screenplays, three books, two short story collections and a book of poems. In 2013 he made his first film, THE COMFORT IN THE DISTANCE/LA COMODIDAD EN LA DISTANSIA. FRAGMENTS OF LUCÌA/FRAGMENTOS DE LUCÌA is his second feature.
GOOD OLD DAYS/SAN XIAN QING NIAN, dir. Fang Liu (China) International Premiere
A young man tries in vain to go back to the village where his ancestral home was once located. He and some former classmates, who years ago used to be his closest friends, try to enter the village by digging a tunnel.
Fang Liu (Liao Ning, 1979) is a Chinese director and screenwriter. After studying at Chongqing University, he has been working in Western Film Group in Xian as a screenwriter and assistant director. GOOD OLD DAYS/SAN XIAN QING NIAN is his feature debut.
GUILTY MEN/PARIENTE, dir. Iván D. Gaona (Colombia) Eastern European Premiere
Mariana is Willington’s only love, but she is marrying his cousin Rene. Things take an unexpected turn and soon Rene’s life depends on Willington. A gripping crime story about ordinary people caught in a situation that rapidly slips out of their control.
Iván D. Gaona (Güepsa, 1980) is a Colombian director. He studied Film and Television at the National University of Colombia. He has directed the shorts PORTRAITS/LOS RETRATOS, awarded at Locarno Film Festival, THE TIPLE/EL TIPLE and ORANGES/NARANJAS, which were both presented at Warsaw Film Festival. GUILTY MEN/PARIENTE is his feature debut.
GUKOROKU – TRACES OF SIN/GUKOROKU, dir. Kei Ishikawa (Japan) Eastern European Premiere
Tanaka is going through a tough time trying to support his younger sister Mitsuko, recently arrested and on hold in jail. An investigative reporter, he immerses himself into a story about a shocking murder case gone cold.
Kei Ishikawa (Toyohashi, 1977) is a Japanese director. Ishikawa studied Physics at Tohoku University and Film Directing at the Łódź Film School in Poland. He has made several short films that have been screened at film festivals worldwide including DEAR WORLD, which received the Special Prize from the Akira Kurosawa Foundation and IT’S ALL IN THE FINGERS. GUKOROKU – TRACES OF SIN/GUKOROKU, presented at Venice Film Festival, is his first feature.
HRISTO, dir. Grigor Lefterov, Todor Matsanov (Bulgaria, Italy) International Premiere
18-year-old Hristo has been living on the streets for as long as he can remember. His biggest goal, for which he’s willing to pay any price, is to live like a “normal” person: to have a job, a place to live, and a family. Or so he thinks.
Grigor Lefterov (Ruse, 1963) is a Bulgarian director, screenwriter and producer. He studied medicine and directing at the National Academy for Theatre and Film Arts. In 2009 his short film THE DESERT RUNNER/PUSTINNIAT BEGACH was presented at Warsaw Film Festival. HRISTO is his feature debut.
Todor Matsanov (Velingrad, 1967) is a Bulgarian director, screenwriter and producer. He studied in Rome and at the National Academy for Theatre and Film Arts in Sofia. Since 1998 he has been working as a director and screenwriter on many TV shows. HRISTO is his feature debut.
IN VIEW, dir. Ciarán Creagh (Ireland) European Premiere
Ruth’s life is one of burgeoning guilt dominated by rage, alcoholism, depression and self-loathing. Having lost all that was dear to her, Ruth is still trying to seek out help but is coming to realise that there is only one course of action that may placate her soul.
Ciarán Creagh (Dublin, 1965) is an award-winning screenwriter and director from Dublin, Ireland who works in film and TV. As a screenwriter his works include the independent feature film PARKED presented at Warsaw Film Festival in 2011. He directed two short films THE PICNIC and THE NOTE, also presented at Warsaw Film Festival. IN VIEW is his feature debut.
JULIE, dir. Alba González de Molina (Spain) International Premiere
Julie suddenly decides to run away from Madrid, leaving everything behind. She ends up in a remote town where nobody can find her. Or so she thinks. The inhabitants seem to accept her, but no one knows who Julie really is and what hides behind her evasive eyes.
Alba González de Molina (Las Palmas, 1989) is a Spanish director. She graduated from the Complutense University of Madrid. Along with Blanca Ordóñez she directed STOP! SHOOTING THE CHANGE/STOP! RODANDO EL CAMBIO, a documentary presented at various film festivals. JULIE is her feature debut.
LAND OF THE LITTLE PEOPLE/MEDINAT HAGAMADIM, dir. Yaniv Berman (Israel) European Premiere
Four young kids from military officers’ families form a gang. A troubling social portrait that raises questions and doubts about seemingly obvious things, it’s a film that isn’t afraid to touch sensitive places.
Yaniv Berman (Haifa, 1977) is a graduate student from the Film and Television Department at the Tel-Aviv University. His short film EVEN KIDS STARTED SMALL/GAM YELADIM HETHILU KTANIM was presented at Cannes Film Festival in 2006. He also made a documentary THE ALPHA DIARIES/SHALOM PLUGA ALEPH, which he shot for 6 years. LAND OF THE LITTLE PEOPLE/MEDINAT HAGAMADIM is his feature debut.
LIVE CARGO, dir. Logan Sandler (USA) European Premiere
A grieving couple retreats to an island in the Bahamas where they become entangled in a dangerous turf war between the island's mayor and a greedy human trafficker. A meditation on love, loss and healing in a post-colonial world.
Logan Sandler (Miami, 1989) is an American filmmaker. In 2014, he obtained his M.F.A. from the American Film Institute in Film Directing. He is a recipient of the American Film Institute's Franklin J. Schaffner Fellow Award. His graduation film, TRACKS, was shown at various film festivals. Starring Dree Hemingway, Keith Stanfield and Robert Wisdom, LIVE CARGO is his feature debut. It premiered at Tribeca Film Festival.
OUR LOVE STORY/YEON-AE-DAM, dir. Lee Hyun-ju (South Korea) Eastern European Premiere
Yoon-ju is a graduate student of fine arts and is working on her graduation exhibition. One day, she runs into Ji-soo and immediately finds herself drawn to her. After their initial encounter, Yoon-ju once again runs into Ji-soo at a convenience store and the two eventually start dating. Never having enjoyed dating men, Yoon-ju finds Ji-soo fascinating and becomes completely infatuated with her.
Lee Hyun-ju (Seoul, 1981) is a Korean director. She graduated from the Dankook University and the Korean Academy of Film Arts. Her short films include PRIVATE LESSON, MARRY ME and ORDINARY FAMILY, awarded the Grand Prize in Korean Competition at Asiana International Short Film Festival. OUR LOVE STORY/YEON-AE-DAM, presented at San Sebastian Film Festival, is her feature debut.
QUIT STARING AT MY PLATE/NE GLEDAJ MI U PIJAT, dir. Hana Jušić (Croatia, Denmark) Eastern European Premiere
Marijana’s life revolves around her family, whether she likes it or not. They live on top of one another in a tiny apartment, driving one another crazy. Driven to the edge, Marijana finds comfort in seedy sex with random strangers. But what if it turns out you are better off at home after all?
Hana Jušić (Sibenik, 1983) studied Film Directing at the Academy of Dramatic Art in Zagreb. She has written and directed several short films such as CHILL/ZIMICA and TERRARIUM/TERARIJ, which have been screened at both students and prominent European film festivals. QUIT STARING AT MY PLATE/NE GLEDAJ MI U PIJAT, which debuted at Venice Film Festival, is her feature debut.
TORIL, dir. Laurent Teyssier (France) European Premiere
Philippe, a former drug dealer, is released from prison. He finds out that his father, Jean-Jacques, is sick and crippled by debt. Having been a farmer for generations, Jean-Jacques cannot bring himself to accept the idea of selling his land. Seeking to win back the respect of his loved ones, Philippe decides to take over his father’s business during his convalescence.
Laurent Teyssier is a French director, editor and cinematographer. He studied at the University of Montpellier and in Montreal. Teyssier worked as cameraman-assembler and then director of photography on documentaries and advertising spots. He directed his first short film, JUST OVER EIGHT/8 ET DES POUSSIÈRES, in 2009. TORIL is his debut feature.
Warsaw Film Foundation /32nd Warsaw Film Festival, October 7-16, 201612th CentEast Market Warsaw, October 14-16, 2016