Although the heroines of the film come from two different places - Bangladesh and Ethiopia - their lives are similar. Both have difficult experiences behind them - they grew up in the countryside, struggled with poverty, were victims of violence, and had to decide to flee their homelands. Paradoxically, in spite of the many problems that have affected them, they have become strong women who look forward to the future.
The film presents the conflict between tradition and modernity. The population of Faroe Islands has been hunting whales for centuries. Nowadays, various organizations representing Western civilization raise objections to their non-commercial activity. The film tells the story of man and nature, their coexistence and actions which pose a challenge to it. Could it be that the clash of two opposing views on ecology will change the archipelago forever?
This film enables us to explore both the beauty of a landscapes surrounding the biggest lake in Hungary – Balaton, and the exciting young music scene of this country. This is a series of concerts recorded during different times of day, in different places (ports, ships, cafes, hotel balconies and churches). Every shot gives us a glimpse of the atmosphere in a given place. This beautiful, intriguing musical documentary with a lot energy cannot be clearly classified. The quality of modern Hungarian bands is surprising. These world class compositions are virtually unknown in Poland.
The film follows Red Cross workers from Liberia who collect the bodies of people who died from hemorrhagic fever caused by Ebola virus. They work during the peak of the outbreak in West Africa. Garmai Sumo, a nurse and the only woman in the team, helps to explore the story of their dangerous mission. Her courage and strength allow her to perform this terrifying task. The film was nominated for the Academy Award for Best Documentary (Short Subject).
A poetic portrait of which the protagonist is Max – a Swiss farmer living and working on a secluded farm in the Jura mountains. When winter comes time drags on and gets the imagination going. Especially in a place like Fairy Hill.
The film uses careful framing and calm, rhythmical editing to introduce us to the world of almost complete silence. ‘Budzik’(‘The Alarm Clock’) is a clinic founded by Ewa Błaszczyk, in which children in a coma wait for the day when they wake up. Their beds are attended continuously by their parents, who rarely leave the clinic. They sleep on the camp-beds, next to their children, as they are determined to help the young ones return to life. The movie tells a touching story of people, who do not surrender after facing a personal tragedy. Hope is their weapon in the battle for the lives and health of their children.
Casa Blanca is a tiny fishing village in Cuba. Nelsa and her son Vladimir live in a small flat in an overcrowded, multi-family tenement. Vladimir suffers from Down syndrome, however he is the only caretaker of ailing Nelsa, while she is the only guardian of the boy, who easily gets into trouble. Their life is characterized by both conflicts and moments of touching affection; the woman tries to control her son, while he prefers to spend time with fishermen, helping them work, frolicking about and drinking rum. Almost every day Nelsa wanders the streets of Casa Blanca, looking for her only child who doesn’t want to come home. One day the condition of the woman deteriorates.
A film about a family of miners, the Cruzes, who extract the remnants of silver, zinc, and lead from the surface of the famous Cerro Rico mountain in the Andes of Bolivia. The hardships of their work have remained unchanged for centuries. Unique cinematography allows the filmmakers to record the everyday labour of those miners as they work at 4100 metres above sea level.
Chau is a sixteen-year-old disabled teenager who lives in a Ho Chi Minh care centre. He is a victim of lethal herbicides “Agent Orange” sprayed by the US military during the war in Vietnam. Despite his disability, the boy dreams of becoming a professional fashion designer. The film, directed by David Darg, was nominated for an Oscar this year.
A story of a young girl whose parents do not accept her homosexuality. Sixteen-year-old Ana is admitted to psychiatric hospital, where she is to receive treatment for her tendencies. After the hospital stay, she finds it difficult to cope with such traumatic experiences. Her past is an obstacle in having a true connection with her new love – Martina. “Sick” tells the story of emotions, betrayal, revenge, and forgiveness.
A boy spends his vacation on the seaside. He participates in a summer camp for people with Down syndrome. We observe his efforts to find a girlfriend or listen to his conversations with his friends and witness the creative moments in which he writes his poems. These young people perceive reality in slightly different way than the rest of society. Despite certain dysfunctions, the world we experience in this film, touches us with its honesty and unpretentiousness. Is it possible that in the process of adapting to the society we have lost the ability to feel the world and to express ourselves in a simple and moving manner?
Jurij walks on hot coals barefoot, mesmerizes people and puts them in deep sleep. However, when he rests from his profession of a bioenergy therapist and a spectacular Fidini filmmaker, he assumes the role of a memorable, reflective son who tries to figure out his life with his old father while mourning his mother's death. Who is Jurij when he enters the stage among the enchanted audience and who does he become when he returns to his Ukrainian family home in the centre of the Orthodox world?
“The Good Life” is a story about the town of Tamaquito in the forests of northern Colombia and its inhabitants who make up the Wayúu community. For centuries they have lived on what nature could provide. They hunt in the mountains, pick fruit, and keep cattle. Their lives change dramatically because of the expansion of a coal company which provides this valuable raw material to power plants around the world. People of the town decide to fight for their survival. A young man, Jairo Fuentes, leads them in their struggle for independence.
Intense, colourful, beautiful photos form an intimate portrait of a miner. After hard work in a deep, hot, claustrophobic mine, he goes home, where he can pursue his true passion…
This experimental documentary presents the influence of humans on the environment. Households produce tons of trash impossible to process. Nature becomes humans’ victim - is it a deliberate act or mere neglect? There are many questions of this kind that the viewer has to find answers to,
Twelve-year-old Laura lives with her deaf parents. The girl guides them in everyday life –she translates to sign language the information necessary to understand what is being said at meetings, parent-teacher nights or formal conversations in which they participate. Viewers observe the everyday life of a child who is exceptionally mature for her age, far more aware of reality than her peers.
Every year thousands of Hassids from 70 states visit the grave of Reb Nachman in Uman, Ukraine. The tzadik promised the salvation for every Jew, who would prey, dance and sing on his grave during Rosh Hashana – the Jewish New Year. Nachman encouraged his students to speak to God as to a friend, to prey joyfully and honestly. The Hasids follow the will of their beloved tzadik happily – they celebrate their rites enthusiastically and vigorously. The crowds of Hasids that visit Uman every year are the pillars of local economy, but not everyone is happy with their presence. The right-wing residents act against the outlanders and accuse local authorities of corruption and selling out to Hasids. A huge crucifix, the symbol of their discontent, rises on the slope, over the pond in which numerous Hasids perform a ritual cleansing every year.
Through the fates of women living in distant cities, the director of this film, Ester Gould, tells the story of her older sister, Rowan, a woman who moves from a small Scottish town to study art in London. She is fascinated with Rowan’s outgoing, ambitious nature, which hides the tragedy and narcissism like a façade. There is a price for wishing to be in the centre of everybody’s attention. “Strange Love Affair with Ego” is a remarkable study of fears that accompany today’s celebrities.
The film shows the life of footmen from Pakistan and Sherpa from Nepal. It presents both the everyday labor of these anonymous climbers and the magic of the majestic mountains lying on the border between Pakistan and China. The expedition organized 60 years after the first climber reached the summit of K2, the second highest peak on the Earth, provides an opportunity to tell their story. The mountain has become infamous, as it has claimed the lives of many alpinists throughout the years.
Four people are on their way up the K2 mountain. They take the same path their parents did many years ago. They try to understand the force that compelled their parents to climb the mountain which finally took their lives in 1986. That year is known as ’the black summer’. Tadeusz Piotrowicz, Dobrosława Miodowicz-Wolf and Julie Tullis, the acknowledged climbers, died tragically during an expedition to K2. 30 years later their children: Hania Piotrowska, Łukasz Wolf, Lindsay Tullis, and her brother Chris, embark on a journey to this dreadful mountain. They follow their parents’ footsteps in order to answer the most vital questions… The breathtaking landscapes of Karakorum serve as the background for one of the hardest journeys of their lives.
Monika is one of very few women who compete on European racing tracks with men. Sometimes she is the only girl on the start line. She was born deaf, nonetheless she passionately plays her beloved sport – motorbike racing. The hearing loss doesn’t prevent her from taking risky challenges on a race track. This is a story of a disability which is defeated by a strong character.
The protagonist is a protestant priest living in the far Russian countryside. The grey monotony of his lonely existence is brightened up by the friendship with a white cat, which sometimes has to be taken down from a tall ladder, and sometimes left alone for two long weeks. The titular Kis doesn’t leave the priest’s side and God forbid if anything were to happen to him…
When adults play house, children must grow up quickly. Fourteen-year-old Ola looks after the house, her father as well as a disabled brother and works on her relationship with her mother who lives elsewhere; but most of all, she tries to reunite her family. "Communion" discovers beauty in the rejected and strength in the weakest. This is a speedy lesson in maturity which teaches us that no failure is final. Especially where love is involved.
Several stories, voices and people meet up during a certain night. That night, inhabitants of a big city, who feel lonely, get the urge to talk to someone. Some of them – often needlessly – call an ambulance. Others call the radio, after its host asks the crucial question: ‘What does the end of world mean to each of us?’ They tell painful, tragic stories and amuse us with trivia, on the other hand. We listen to the programme while driving the ambulance, or while observing the city through countless surveillance cameras. The radio binds the film and is the source of the most important questions.
The story of Saar, a young homosexual Jew living in London whose passion is singing in a male choir. Saar had to leave Israel because of his sexual orientation. He wanted to live his own life. However, the protagonist did not cease to fight for acceptance and keeping his ties with his very religious family, which remains in Israel. Life faces him with another very difficult challenge. During a conversation with his mother, his father and siblings try to name the problem that divides them, so that he can become a part of the community again and still be himself.
The film’s heroines are retired burlesque dancers. Stories full of nostalgia and distance to their own work about their professional experience and personal life are interwoven with reflections on feminism, transience and the way people approach sex. Viewers also watch the heroine's daily life and their preparation for the solemn gala of former burlesque dancers.
The story is set in the Siberian part of the Altay Mountains. The viewer’s eyes are met with scenic views and monumental nature in photographs. Although life is not easy for the inhabitants of this place, as a lot of effort and determination is required of them, consorting with nature brings them answers to questions that trouble them.
A tragicomic depiction of the place where truck drivers from Eastern Europe rest. Every weekend they gather in parking lots such as the titular "Little Bucharest". Together they try to overcome their homesickness and share their problems. They are brought together by their hard work and difficult living conditions away from loved ones for whom they seek to ensure a better future.
Samira says with sincere regret that she finally understands what her daughter wanted to tell her between the lines before leaving. Nora left Belgium for Syria in May 2013 to join the jihad. Her mother Samira does her best to bring her daughter back home. She takes off to Syria...
A film about the conflicting experiences of freedom and instability. A story of two captains who share their love for the sea and a fisherman’s profession, that is becoming redundant. The creators accompany the crew of a small fishing boat where the feeling of romanticism connected with sea voyages is bound to observing the rawness of fishermen’s everyday life.
Marianna is an attractive, 40-years old woman. She decided to leave her wife and children, whom she had loved. She was forced to sue her own parents. She did all that in order to change sex. As it turns out, life has prepared a scenario that couldn’t be foreseen, while the price of freedom and coveted womanhood stays very high. Andrzej Wajda: "Karolina Bielawska made a movie about freedom which is the highest value in every human’s life with great sensibility. The film's character fought a moving battle with her environment and she won that battle, despite grave difficulties. The film is daring, not only because of its theme, but also the exceptional protagonist. (…) It is made with great dose of sensitivity and respect for another human being. It’s wonderful that such young directors are able to make films so mature and lively."
A portrait of a rebellious teenager from a small Hungarian village. Ricsi lives on the edge. Each day brings him trouble. Running from the police, thievery, driving without licence; all of this is just the beginning. But cars are his great passion – he prepares them for races. The filmmakers have followed Ricsi for five years and created a story of an exceptional young man who took life into his own hands despite his turbulent ways.
An animated movie about the hardships of an 8 year old who has an alcohol-addicted mother. Wally fights for her life every single day as it becomes increasingly completed. The girl does her best to maintain her family’s normalcy. Overwhelming demands, helplessness and despair shape her childhood.
This short, somewhat surreal, non-fiction animation tells the story of the mass deportations of the Kalmyk population inhabiting the Soviet Union. When in 1943 the Kalmyk Autonomous Soviet Socialist Republic was dissolved, its inhabitants had to abandon their previous lives. Many of them failed to return after the war.
Black and white, simple and modest line – this movie tells us a story of a man, who is waiting for the execution of his death sentence. The graphic, artistic form shows a record of a life.
This animated picture touches upon extremely important social issues of our times: access to criminal justice, care for war veterans, and mental health. The film explores the story of a man who commits a crime as seen from the perspective of his brother. In his own narrative, Bill Babbitt explains his motives and the change of heart towards the issue of death penalty. The film was nominated this year for the Academy Award for Best Documentary (Short Subject).
The devotion of a 92-year-old family doctor who has, unchangeably, for almost 60 years taken care of his sensitive patients. He advises them on the phone on a daily basis and pays visits to the sick in their flats. His biggest enemies are medical insurers who pressure the elderly doctor, criticizing his old-fashioned methods. Supported by his wife he fights everything he thinks of as wrong in the modern health system.
Antonetta Mischenko, a student of the Kyiv Conservatory, rescued a piano that was going to be used as a building block for barricades. The instrument became a symbol of nonviolent revolution and resistance against authoritarian rules in Ukraine. Soon, the piano united the Maidan’s protesters, who tirelessly sang Ukraine’s national anthem and folk songs to its accompaniment, ignoring the frost and snow. The instrument proved to be more efficient a weapon than Molotov’s cocktail… The authorities called the singing protesters ‘the piano extremists’.
The protagonists of the film are three unusual artists. Male Romanian immigrants create unique sand sculptures on the streets of London. They tell their stories to the audience: they have come to the UK in search of a better life, driven by poverty and lack of perspective. Creating sand sculptures gives them a sense of purpose and allows them to forget unpleasant experiences for a moment.
Kazimierz Błaszczak is a dreamer. In Cieszęcin, in the county of Wieruszów, he installed a huge radio telescope to observe alien planets. He has submitted his candidature to the Mars One program and proceeds to the next selection stages. If he succeeds in qualifying he will be the first Pole in history to land on Mars and will never return.
The airport in Donetsk, rebuilt in 2012 for European Football Championship, was entirely destroyed during the armed conflict between Ukraine and Russia. Rather symbolic than strategic in its meaning, the defense lasted several months. The film aims to tell the story from the perspective of soldiers fighting for both sides of the conflict. The authors demonstrate how mysterious human nature actually is and explore human ability of adapting to extreme conditions when one’s life is constantly on the line.
The main character of this autothematic document is an older man who goes to the mountains in search of music. He takes with him a camera on which he records both the monumental nature surrounding him with its innate sounds and the people he meets on his way. Film critics who watch and evaluate a man's work are inclined to reflect on the sensitivity of the film operator.
A documentary essay on the waves of protests and demonstrations, homeless dogs and their caretakers. It takes place in the heart of the birthplace of democracy on the streets of Athens. A story of love and loyalty as well as the eternal aspirations and the longings of animals and people for democracy.
On the day of his thirtieth birthday Tom Fassaert, the director of this film, receives a surprising invitation from his 95-year-old grandmother living in South Africa. He has never met her, only heard of her through stories shared by his father, which were full of resentment and criticism. Marianna was a famous model in the 1950s, a true femme fatale surrounded by lovers. The director’s father and uncle were raised in an orphanage. His trip to South Africa brings unexpected emotional reactions and complications.
A father, two sons and the love for football are the protagonists of this unpretentious, cheerful film. It is also a story of serious plans, dreams and life decisions. Two brothers live in one of the countless villages of southern Poland. 14 year-old Mateusz and 13 year-old Łukasz train football under observant, protective and sometimes controlling eye of their father, who is a coach in a local football club. They start professional tests in a renowned, metropolitan team. It may be the first step in fulfilling the dream of playing in Ekstraklasa…
Can a horse save the life of a young man? The story of an incredible friendship between 14-year-old Dylan and wild mare Shelly, which takes place on the streets of one of Dublin’s districts. Despite the ban on taming wild horses and numerous adversities, the close relationship between man and horse gets even closer. Dylan becomes an urban cowboy and escapes criminal dangers typical of this part of Ireland.
One day, Wiesław Koneczny did not appear in the mine, and that day a tragic accident occurred at his workplace. Since then, the protagonist of the film has been collecting and documenting folk legends, penning his neighbours’ personal stories, looking for ghosts and gathering witness accounts of contact with the supernatural world. His wife, Genowefa, helps him on this mission. A witty story about passion and mystery.
A musical road trip film about Piotr Klimek, a composer from Szczecin. The composer spends his time on the road executing various musical projects. We get to see what his work consists of and the diversity of styles in the music composed by him.
An extremely warm and moving documentary confirming the maxim that life itself writes the best stories. When at the age of three Owen Suskind began to lose the ability to walk and talk, modern medicine was unable to help him. His future looked quite bleak. Walt Disney Animations came to the rescue, thanks to which the boy began to gradually react to the stimuli reaching him from the TV screen and communicate with his immediate family. The film was nominated for this year's Oscars.
A beekeeper from Belgium shares his concerns about the future of his apiary. Beekeeping, his passion, has a purpose – it is supposed to keep our natural environment alive. The director shot the entire film within a single day to highlight the need for preserving this underrated profession.