Cottbus Film Festival 2021 presents Spotlight: Slovensko
During the first week of November, audiences at the Cottbus Film Festival in Germany (2 – 7 November 2021) will have the opportunity to discover Slovak cinema. The 31st festival edition will feature a major retrospective Spotlight: Slovensko, which will present inspiring double bills of cult films from the 1960s and current productions. Three new Slovak films will be screened in two competition sections of the festival, and we will also have representatives in two festival juries.
The Cottbus Film Festival is one of the most important events focusing on Eastern European cinema. In the Feature Film Competition, Peter Kerekes' film 107 Mothers and Václav Kadrnka's drama Saving One Who Was Dead will be presented, while Roman Pivovarník's student film Views will compete for the prize in the Short Film Competition.
Among contemporary films, the audience will also see Olmo Omerzu's new film Bird Atlas and Vera Lackova's documentary debut How I Became a Partisan. Both films will be screened at the festival on the occasion of the directors' participation in the festival juries. The children's festival programme will include the family film Martin and the Magical Forest by Petr Oukropec. Slovakia will also be represented in the Industry programme connecting cottbus, with the projects The White Mare by Theodor Kuhn and The Word by Beata Parkanová.
On the occasion of the centenary of Slovak cinema, the festival will present retrospective programme Spotlight: Slovensko, curated by Rastislav Steranka, Director of the National Cinematography Centre of the SFI and curator of the Filmoteka of Kino Lumière, and Bernd Buder, Programme Director of the Cottbus Film Festival. Together, they have put together seven double bills.
The Cottbus Film Festival will screen five double programmes with ten films. The double bill entitled For a Better Future thematically links the journey to work with the belief in a better future and is represented by the films Beware...! (1946) by Martin Frič and Made in Ash (2012) by Iveta Grófová. The double programme Dare or Die - Surviving the Holocaust? consists of The Boxer and Death (1962) by Peter Solan and The Auschwitz Report (2020) by Peter Bebjak, Night Bar Fatale - Urban Microcosm features short Fifi Fatale (2018) by Mária Kralovič and Before Tonight is Over (1965) by Peter Solan, Life as an Existential Battle will present the titles The Bells Toll for the Barefooted (1965) by Stanislav Barabáš and My Dog Killer (2013) by Mira Fornay, the double bill Unfortunate Returns will show short Are You Feeling Good? (2011) by Matúš Krajňák and Dragon‘s Return (1967) by Eduard Grečner. In total, the curators have prepared seven pairs, two of which - composed of documentary titles - were already presented during the previous two months in Berlin, in the form of "warm up" screenings. In the Czech Centre in September, the audience saw the double bill Worlds Beyond Light with Štefan Uher's Marked by Darkness (1959) and Juraj Lehotsky's Blind Loves (2008); in October, the Slovak Institute in Berlin screened a double bill Images of Stark Reality, which presented Marek Moučka's In Shallow Water (2020) and Dušan Hanák's Pictures of the Old World (1972).