Ji.hlava celebrates 25 years with 300 films


– The environment and the relationship between man and nature are in the spotlight of the next edition of the Czech documentary gathering

Lines by Barbora Sliepková

The Ji.hlava International Documentary Film Festival will celebrate its 25e-Anniversary edition from October 26 to 31, with nearly 300 films distributed in a refined structure. “In 25 years of existence, Ji.hlava IDFF has confirmed its position as the leading European documentary festival, known for its pioneering approach and innovative programming. Therefore, we have improved the competitions as well as the price structure in order to highlight the complexity of documentary cinema ”, explains the festival director. Marek Hovorka.

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The main Opus Bonum competition will host 15 films in world and international premieres. Among them are Sebastian mihăilescuthe collective portrait of contemporary Romanian youth, You are Ceaușescu for me; the Belgian audiovisual letter to an unborn child Letter to Nicolas through Hara kaminara; the czech time-lapse movie In strength through Martin Mareček, described as “the portrait of an intellectual at the end of his rope” while reflecting on the changes and forms of masculinity at the 21st century; and the debut feature from the emerging Slovak director Barbora sliepkova, Lines (see the news).

National films will compete in the separate Czech Joy section. The docudrama Eye-witness through Jiří Havelka, which the director calls “a documentary anatomy of a mass murder for a monitor and 34 talking heads”, will be shortlisted for the award for best Czech documentary alongside Vera Lackovapersonal film on historical memory How I became a supporter [+see also:
interview: Vera Lacková
film profile
]
, Petr hatlethe portrait of an inclusive school that supports the integration of young migrants into Czech society, One-room school, and Zuzana Piussithe latest investigative documentary project by, Torment, reflecting on the long-term crisis of the Slovak judicial system (formerly known as the In the fog – see the news).

The Exprmntl.cz. The competition for Czech experimental documentaries will present a selection in which “layered test formats meet exploratory miniatures, and films by established filmmakers sit alongside the playful inventiveness of the works of an emerging generation of experimental filmmakers, and even of ‘students of film and art schools’, as revealed by the programmer Andrea Slovákova.

Summarizing the themes for this year’s selection, Hovorka says: “Special emphasis is placed on the environment and the relationship between humans and nature. […] Across continents, filmmakers are increasingly confronted with these issues, following protests and trials, and even observing the lives of animals. But the previous alarmist tone is now being replaced by motivation for action and positive activism.

The non-competitive Constellations section will feature a carefully curated selection of documentaries from the festival circuit, including Andrea Arnoldthe time-lapse doc of Cow [+see also:
film review
trailer
film profile
]
; Charlotte gainsbourgthe directorial debut of, Jane by Charlotte [+see also:
film review
trailer
film profile
]
, a portrait of his mother; Marta Popivoda‘s Resistance Landscapes [+see also:
film review
trailer
interview: Marta Popivoda
film profile
]
; and Flore Vasseurdocumentary on adolescents who fight for human rights, the survival of the planet and freedom of expression, Bigger than us [+see also:
trailer
film profile
]
.

The complete program of the 25e Ji.hlava International Documentary Film Festival is available here.

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