2020 Screening Selection
Katalin Moldovai (Hungary) Hope is what brings us forward. All the characters in the movie – the main character Margit, and her daughter Judit – become part of a hope-giving lie. Margit suffers from a serious skin cancer, but her daughter arranges that her mother be treated. She goes to the treatments alone, and her life becomes more active and the relationship with her daughter seems to get better.
Nora Kirkpatrick (USA) When the reigning queen of the Home Shopping Network is killed live on-the-air during a hair drying demonstration gone wrong, her three venomous, power-hungry disciples enter into a cutthroat competition for her coveted time slot.
Thomas Buisson (France) 65-year-old Claude zooms about on her little motorbike, scratching scratch cards and living off bogus cheques. But the local population has had enough. The old lady must either settle down or disappear.
Leonard Rääf (Denmark) 20-something year old Agnes, seeks independence in traveling to Iceland on her own. With a promising job as an au pair for two twin girls, she seems to have found the perfect base for her search in personal reinvention.
Loris Lamunière, Charles Mercier (France) This fictional animal documentary places us in a distant imaginary future where life underwater as we know it today has been completely replaced by a new generation of species, made of plastic. The massive human pollution of the oceans has led to a profound disruption of our eco-systems, the laws of evolution have been jostled and led to the creation of new submarine mutants, observed in their natural environment.
August Aabo (Denmark) A young woman's friend dies in an accident, but she doesn't cry. She finds a bag full of money and is more affected by the joy of the money, than she is troubled by the sorrow of her loss. In her dreams she is haunted by her dead friend, who asks her why she isn’t crying.
Albert Sverrisson (Denmark) Kasper is hurt when his father almost misses out on seeing his new-born granddaughter simply because he refuses to set foot in the same room as his ex-wife – Kasper’s mother – is in. He decides to make an ultimatum towards his father, demanding that he participate unconditionally in his grandchild’s life – now and forevermore, whatever it takes.
Baptiste Petit-Gats (France) It is All Saints’ Day. Bérénice wanders through the city. She must find flowers for the grave. Sacha, her son, has other plans. Too bad. She must find flowers for the grave.
Martin Sandin (Sweden) Stockholm 2018. In a time where social media gives us performance anxiety and confirmation is becoming increasingly important, Clara meets Peter. Clara wants the world. Peter wants nothing but to be loved. Foggy Days is a modern love story that questions how we live today and what happens when we only focus on ourselves and ignore everybody else.
Teddy Cherim (Netherlands) The stylised fashion documentary Goodwill Dumping brings the enormity of the industry surrounding donated secondhand clothing to light. The film showcases the journey that discarded pieces of clothing make and what kind of impact this has on local industries.
Savas Ceviz (Germany) Markus, a good-looking, likable and respected architect, is a paedophile. Bodies of little boys excite him. He suffers tremendously because of this inclination. He tortures himself for it and is disgusted by himself. Nevertheless, the arousal is there. And there is nothing he can do about it. He struggles the most when he is about to become sexual with a boy for the first time. That is when he senses that he will not be able to keep his desire under control for much longer
Talia Abel, Xenia Bernal, Ian Kim, Alejandro Moses, Hank Schoen, India Spencer, Eva Suissa, Michael Zambrano (USA) Mixed media animation and personal testimony illustrate the story of a child survivor of the Holocaust. Created by students in the Righteous Conversations Project, a collaboration of Holocaust survivors and teens, during Harvard-Westlake Summer Film.
Eric Boadella (Spain) Ketchup Brothers is the “blood” oath between two lost souls united by destiny: Vero, who has just escaped from jail with a stolen car, and Samuel, a child who wanders through the streets of Barcelona stealing wallets.
Liva Lervig Haue, Alexander Sørensen (Denmark) Marcus is the guitarist and leading force behind struggling rock band, Killing Stacy. On the night of their biggest gig yet, everything is falling apart and Marcus is desperately trying to save the show.
Carol Dysinger (USA) This film tells the story of young Afghan girls learning to read, write - and skateboard - in Kabul. After years of conflict, and with Afghanistan still dubbed 'one of the worst places to be born a girl', an organisation called ‘Skateistan’ recruits kids from poor neighbourhoods and teaches them skills so they can return to public school and get a start in life.
Marco Molinelli (Italy) Often considered to be untranslatable, the Japanese term MONO NO AWARE refers to the bittersweet realization of the ephemeral nature of all things. It is the awareness that everything in existence is temporary. The fleetingness of youth, the fading of romance, and the changing of seasons are not to be mourned, but cherished and appreciated in their impermanence, for that is where their beauty comes from.
Emily Mkrtichian, Jesse Soursourian (Armenia) What if fighting for your country meant going against some of its most traditional values? Motherland is a documentary about the women who shake tradition to rid their country of landmines leftover from a devastating ethnic war. Individually outcast; together, a collective - the deminers support each other as they take on the dangerous role of breaking stereotypes and securing the future of their war-torn republic.
Ross Lai (Canada) El Salvador has some of the most extreme anti-abortion laws in the world. It is one of a handful of countries in the world where abortion is banned under all circumstances, including cases of rape and when a pregnancy poses a clinically verifiable risk to a woman’s health. As an extreme consequence of the law, women who have naturally occurring obstetric emergencies are routinely imprisoned on homicide charges.
Liza Koifman (Netherlands) After her parents passed, Janna took over the family farm where she lives with her disabled brother. The daily care for her brother takes a toll on Janna. Watching her peers moving on in life and building relationships makes the situation even more unbearable. Will she ever be able to leave her nest?
Alex Helfrecht, Jörg Tittel (UK) Boris (Dimitri Gripari) and Olga (Gabriella Moran) have travelled across Europe to the port of Dover with precious cargo from Russia. When Border Control guards Steve (Garry Mountaine) and Liz (Beatie Edney) unearth far more than they were expecting, an interrogation ensues, overseen by the formidable Head of Border Control Mrs. Pyke (Olivia Williams). Her strong and stable methods uncover truths hidden - quite literally - within our protagonists.
Michael Dichter (France) No summer camp this year for 13-year-old Vivian and Max because of the imminent closure of the factory where their parents are working. But Vivian has a plan to make money and allow them to go to the camp anyway. Accompanied by Tom, their childhood friend, they will run into a race against time.
Svend Colding (Denmark)
Jie Weng (China) Ray is a little monster who lives on the edge of a volcano that is about to erupt, which pushes him to find a way to move his house. From being accustomed to earthquakes to wishing to take away all his beloved objects, Ray experiences a painful struggle in his heart. In the end, with his wisdom and hands, he transformes his wooden house into a small boat and embarkes on the adventure of a long road. In this poem-like short film, the simple and lovely Ray not only brings us laug
Alex Ströbeck (Sweden) A father and son get into a disagreement over the fate of an animal on their farm.
Edouard Paquet (UK) Fascinated by remote, isolated places and why people live there, I set off to Bardsey Island; home to just 4 permanent residents.
Loli Menezes (Brazil) Selma is a trans woman who built her life away from the family. One day she gets a call to go to her elderly mother, who suffers from Alzheimer's and needs treatment. In this encounter, lost in confused memories, the two women remember forgotten pains and desires, and revisit lost guilt and affection.
Georgi M. Unkovski (Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia) After an unsuccessful attempt to renew his car registration, Dejan (37) falls in a bureaucratic trap that tests his determination to be a responsible father.
Carla Malling Agger (Denmark) The 7-year-old girl, Solvej, lives alone with her mentally ill mother in a messy apartment. Her mother is sick, but Solvej cannot see why, because the sickness is inside her mothers head. Solvej eats canned food and goes to school in her dirty clothes. Amidst all the mess, Solvej dreams herself away in her drawings, which come alive to take her away from the world, she's been placed in. In her troubled daily life, there are only small beams of hope.
Noor Alasswad (State of Palestine) In this documentary, we spend a day under the shade of a lemon tree with a Palestinian woman named Khaldieh who was abruptly exiled from her hometown of Tulkarem in the year 1967. Preparing herself a humble breakfast of za’tar and inhaling the smell of sage, she recreates her homeland through an assemblage of simple elements.
Jia Shijun (China) Under the Moonlight (2019) is a music video based on a Yi ethnic poem, “阿莫尼惹”. Sung only in Yi ethnic language, this poem is about mother-daughter relationships in Yi heritage. The story in Under the Moonlight (2019) is a third-person narrative about a girl born in the Daliang Mountains. She visualizes her past growing up in the village. Even though she feels blessed about her roots, she reflects on how she had longed for a better future.
Phoebe Arnstein (UK) In this short documentary, fourteen people from across the world reveal their unique connection to water. We the Bathers holds up an intimate lens to a series of disparate lives, leading us to consider how our bathing rituals might be shaped by our identities.