Karlovy Vary Open Eyes - the best of the Cannes festival

    Open Eyes - the best of the Cannes festival

    Waltz with Bashir, Open Eyes 2008

    The Open Eyes section of the program at the 43rd KVIFF will present moviegoers with 13 films that were screened at this year's Cannes IFF.

    At the recent festival in Cannes, director Matteo Garrone's Gomorra was awarded Grand Prix of the Festival. This brutally raw fresco, about the ways in which Naples's Camorra controls people's everyday lives, is based on Roberto Saviano's 2006 instant bestseller. Another Italian movie became a cinematic event at Cannes, taking the Jury Prize: Il Divo is a brilliant, ironic portrait of Italian politician Giulio Andreotti. The film was shot by Paolo Sorrentino, whom Karlovy Vary audiences know from The Family Friend (2005).

    In recent years, Karlovy Vary has screened two notable films by Turkish filmmaker Nuri Bilge Ceylan: Distant (2002) and Climates (2006). This year, the festival will present Three Monkeys (Üc maymun), another film from this original director; it received the Award for Best Director.

    The animated documentary Waltz with Bashir promises to become a hit of the Open Eyes section. The director, Ari Folman, is coming to sit on the Grand Jury of the 43rd KVIFF.

    Lorna's Silence, Open Eyes 2008

    The Dardenne brothers' raw drama Lorna's Silence (Award for Best Screenplay) focuses on outsiders living on the fringes of rich Western society. Also selected from this year's Cannes festival, it tells the story of a young Albanian woman living in Belgium who seeks to gain the means to realize her dreams via a fake marriage.

    O'Horten was one of the most interesting films to be screened in the Un certain regard section of the 2008 Cannes IFF. It has everything for which the films of director Bent Hamer have won the favor of viewers and critics alike: gentle humor, and original script, and above all an unforgettable atmosphere.

    Shown in the competition at this year's Cannes IFF, Lion's Den (Leonera), the most recent offering from highly-talented Argentine filmmaker Pablo Trapero, offers a detailed description of life in a women's prison. Authentic acting performances, a convincingly conveyed atmosphere, and the opportunity of seeing the prisoners at the most intimate times: these features lure viewers into believing that they have become part of the condemned women's lives.

    Film screenings:
    5P3 - 8.7., 16:30, Cinema GH Pupp
    Cloud 9 | Wolke 9
    Director: Andreas Dresen
    Germany, 2008, 98 min

    Inge is on her way to return a pair of mended trousers to her customer, Karl, and the delivery ends up in a sudden passionate embrace followed by sex. Inge lives with her husband Werner and so she initially avoids having a relationship with Karl, but mutual attraction (and not only sexual) gets the upper hand. Love blooms at every age - even in retirement, as the protagonists discover themselves.

    Discussion My Program
    Film screenings:
    2D2 - 5.7., 11:00, Theatre Karlovy Vary
    6P5 - 9.7., 22:00, Cinema GH Pupp
    9K5 - 12.7., 22:00, Panasonic Cinema
    Delta | Delta
    Director: Kornél Mundruczó
    Hungary, Germany, 2008, 92 min

    A quiet young man returns to his native region, the wild Delta, where the villagers live cut off from the world around them, and where he and his sister become closer than social convention permits. The isolated environment of the village in the middle of the water helps build a strong, minimalist drama experienced more inwardly than outwardly.

    Discussion My Program
    Film screenings:
    2E1 - 5.7., 10:00, Espace Dorleans Cinema
    4R3 - 7.7., 16:30, Richmond Cinema
    7P3 - 10.7., 16:30, Cinema GH Pupp
    The Desert Within | Desierto adentro
    Director: Rodrigo Plá
    Mexico, 2008, 112 min

    A film saga about an imagined family curse, set against the backdrop of a politico-religious conflict. Elías, who has committed a sin against God, undertakes to try to avert His wrath, a pledge which affects the lives of those closest to him. The film was selected for the closing of the International Critics' Week in Cannes 2008.

    Discussion My Program
    Film screenings:
    313 - 6.7., 14:00, Grand Hall
    821 - 11.7., 9:30, Small Hall - Thermal
    9D9 - 12.7., 22:00, Theatre Karlovy Vary
    Gomorrah | Gomorra
    Director: Matteo Garrone
    Italy, 2008, 135 min

    This brutally raw fresco relates the ways in which the Neapolitan Camorra controls day-to-day life. We are in a world where the only law is violence, the only value power and the only language the roar of gunfire. The goal is domination of the markets for narcotics, hazardous waste, and even the tourism and clothing industries. The film is based on a book by journalist Roberto Saviano which became an overnight bestseller in 2006. Gomorrah received the Grand Prix at the recent Cannes Film Festival.

    Discussion My Program
    Film screenings:
    2D9 - 5.7., 22:00, Theatre Karlovy Vary
    411 - 7.7., 9:00, Grand Hall
    9D4 - 12.7., 14:00, Theatre Karlovy Vary
    Il Divo | Il divo
    Director: Paolo Sorrentino
    Italy, 2008, 118 min

    A brilliant portrait of a man who stepped onto the Italian political stage in 1946 and hasn't altogether left it since. The subject of the filmmaker's antipathy and fascination is the nearly ninety-year-old Christian Democrat Giulio Andreotti, who stood at the head of the Italian government seven times and never found himself in the crosshairs of the mafia (as opposed to many of his colleagues and companions). Superbly portrayed by Tony Servillo, the "divine Giulio" is an enigmatic figure, even physically reminiscent of a puppet willing to sacrifice his conscience for the sake of his infinite ambition.

    Discussion My Program
    Film screenings:
    238 - 5.7., 22:00, Congress Hall - Thermal
    4D2 - 7.7., 11:00, Theatre Karlovy Vary
    9E5 - 12.7., 22:00, Espace Dorleans Cinema
    Involuntary | De ofrivilliga
    Director: Ruben Östlund
    Sweden, 2008, 98 min

    Two blond teenage girls have affected chats, a group of young men experiments with sex, a young teacher tries to resolve a case of bullying and a group of passengers are held prisoner by a bus driver. With his bizarre sense of humour, together with its uncanny talent for observation, the filmmaker examines the herd mentality and the urge to overstep taboo.

    Discussion My Program
    Film screenings:
    212 - 5.7., 11:30, Grand Hall
    5P2 - 8.7., 13:30, Cinema GH Pupp
    925 - 12.7., 18:30, Small Hall - Thermal
    Lion's Den | Leonera
    Director: Pablo Trapero
    Argentina, 2008, 113 min

    Julia wakes up in an apartment that is covered in blood, with the dead body of her lover by her side and another man who is unconscious. Julia can allegedly remember nothing... In this, his latest film, which appeared in competition at this year's festival in Cannes, the great talent of Argentine film, Pablo Trapero, focuses on a detailed description of life in a women's prison. The authentic performances, convincing atmosphere and the opportunity to see the prisoners even in their most intimate moments give the viewer the feeling they have become a part of the lives of the condemned women. Martina Gusman excels in the lead role as Julia.

    Discussion My Program
    Film screenings:
    2K4 - 5.7., 19:00, Panasonic Cinema
    511 - 8.7., 9:00, Grand Hall
    8P3 - 11.7., 16:30, Cinema GH Pupp
    Lorna's Silence | Le silence de Lorna
    Director: Jean-Pierre Dardenne, Luc Dardenne
    Belgium, France, Italy, 2008, 105 min

    Lorna, a young Albanian woman living in Belgium fakes a marriage with drug addict Claudy. Now a Belgian citizen, she wants to fake yet another marriage with a Russian mafioso to get the money for the snack bar she dreams of having. Another raw drama from the Dardenne brothers with outsider protagonists living on the outskirts of affluent Western society.

    Discussion My Program
    Film screenings:
    236 - 5.7., 19:00, Congress Hall - Thermal
    3R1 - 6.7., 10:30, Richmond Cinema
    8K1 - 11.7., 10:00, Panasonic Cinema
    Moscow, Belgium | Aanrijding in Moscou
    Director: Christophe van Rompaey
    Belgium, 2008, 102 min

    Embittered postwoman Matty is facing the start of a middle-age crisis with the departure of her husband for a younger woman, the burden of three pubertal children, and a new romance with Johnny, a truck driver ten years her junior. This romantic but not slushy film follows its charismatic heroine on a journey towards happiness and late romance.

    Discussion My Program
    Film screenings:
    1C6 - 4.7., 18:30, Čas Cinema
    2K5 - 5.7., 22:00, Panasonic Cinema
    8K3 - 11.7., 16:00, Panasonic Cinema
    Of Time and the City | Of Time and the City
    Director: Terence Davies
    United Kingdom, 2008, 74 min

    Renowned British director Terence Davies returns to his childhood haunts in Liverpool, reconstructing them with authentic footage from the period. A riveting documentary film that reflects not only the poetic style of Davies's previous work but also the delicate treatment he affords the musical accompaniment.

    Discussion My Program
    Film screenings:
    8P2 - 11.7., 13:30, Cinema GH Pupp
    O'Horten | O'Horten
    Director: Bent Hamer
    Norway, Germany, France, Denmark, 2007, 90 min

    One of the most interesting films shown in the Un certain regard section of this year's Cannes Film Festival, which encompasses everything that audiences and critics admire Bent Hamer's for: mild humour, an original screenplay and particularly an unforgettable atmosphere. Odd Horten has worked his whole life as an engine-driver. The time has come to start retirement, and tomorrow Horten will be setting off on his regular Oslo-Bergen route for the last time. But for the first time in forty years on the tracks, he is late for work... A charming film that is not just for train aficionados.

    Discussion My Program
    Film screenings:
    312 - 6.7., 11:30, Grand Hall
    8P4 - 11.7., 19:00, Cinema GH Pupp
    Three Monkeys | Üc maymun
    Director: Nuri Bilge Ceylan
    Turkey, France, Italy, 2008, 109 min

    Employed by an influential politician, Eyup takes the blame for his boss's traffic accident and goes to jail in his place. His wife, Hacer, is left alone with their adolescent son. To get the boy the money he needs for the car he's always wanted, she goes to the politician for help. But she ends up getting more involved with him than she would have wanted. A minimalist family drama filmed in a polished visual style.

    Discussion My Program
    Film screenings:
    6D4 - 9.7., 14:00, Theatre Karlovy Vary
    Waltz with Bashir | Waltz with Bashir
    Director: Ari Folman
    Israel, Germany, France, 2008, 85 min

    The autobiographical protagonist Ari sets out to find old friends and other people who can tell him whether he had once witnessed the brutal massacre in the Palestinian refugee camps of Sabra and Shatila. In the steps of Persepolis, this unconventional documentary is another animated film about recent history in the Near East - and every bit as absorbing, moving and horrific.