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You can watch world-class documentaries online until April 11

2020 was a challenging year, but also rich in important titles in the world of documentary cinema from around the world, say the organizers of the 25th Sofia Film Fest. You can watch their special selection online at online.siff.bg.

The poster contains a total of 12 titles with Mexican, Romanian, German, Czech, Russian, Irish and American productions from the documentary competition of the jubilee edition of the festival:

“Akasa, my home” by director Radu Chornichuk (Photo: Sofia Film Fest)

“Akasa, my home” by director Radu Chornichuk (Photo: Sofia Film Fest)

Romanian-German co-production “Akasa, my home” to the director Radu Chornychuk get The award for best documentary at the 25th SFF. Last year, he was honored for the mastery of his cameraman in Sundance, received a special award in Thessaloniki and a prize for best film in Transylvania.

The story is about the life of a family – parents with nine children who have lived for 20 years in a shack in the delta near Bucharest – an abandoned body of water that has become an urban nature reserve. In the course of the story, even Prince Charles himself appears in a documented visit to the southeastern part of this unique suburb of the Romanian capital.

“499” by Rodrigo Reyes (Photo: Sofia Film Fest)

“499” by Rodrigo Reyes (Photo: Sofia Film Fest)

The Mexican film “499” on Rodrigo Reyes was awarded three international prizes – the Special Jury Prize at the Hot Docs Festival in Canada, the award for best cinematography in the Tribeca Documentary Competition, and the Golden Frog for Best Documentary in Camerimage.

The story is about a 16th-century conquistador who set out on a journey along the destructive path of the Spanish army to Tenochtitlan, now known as Mexico City. According to Jim Jarmusch, “Rodrigo Reyes has created a strong, beautiful and shocking film that can be characterized as a separate genre!”

“Ani” by Helene Trsheshchikova (Photo: Sofia Film Fest)

“Ani” by Helene Trsheshtikova (Photo: Sofia Film Fest)

The film by the famous Czech director Helena Tršeštikova “Ani” was awarded an honorary diploma in the Documentary Competition of the 25th SFF and traces the story of a former prostitute who started selling sex at the age of 46, whose life has been documented for years – from 1996 to 2012.

The work of Helena Trsheshchikova, among which is “Foreman vs. Foreman”, is well known to the Bulgarian audience as Sofia Film Fest has presented most of her works.

“Vim Wenders: Desperado” by Eric Friedler and Andreas Frege (Photo: Sofia Film Fest)

“Vim Wenders: Desperado” by Eric Friedler and Andreas Frege (Photo: Sofia Film Fest)

Quite by accident “Vim Wenders: Desperado” was included in the official program of the Cannes Film Festival – this is a unique documentary film by directors Erik Fridler and Andreas Frege, famous as Campino, frontman of the famous German band “Die toten Hosen”, and also an actor who starred in several films by Wenders.

With unprecedented archival footage and unusual encounters and stories about Wenders by his colleagues in cinema – such as Francis Ford Coppola, William Defoe, Andy McDowell, Patti Smith, Werner Herzog, the film traces in a unique way the life and work of one of the most impressive contemporary masters of cinema.

From Düsseldorf to Paris and all the way to the Texas desert, the film tells the story of iconic places and key moments in Wenders’ work as a director, producer, photographer and screenwriter.

“Captured by the Network” by Barbora Halupova and Vit Klusak (Photo: Sofia Film Fest)

“Captured by the Network” by Barbora Halupova and Vit Klusak (Photo: Sofia Film Fest)

“Captive of the network” of Czech directors Barbora Halupova and Vit Klusak (director of the 2004 hit “Czech Dream”, featured in the SFF program) explores the world of online sexual abuse of children, succeeding in turning the film experiment into an act of social intervention.

The story is immersed in the dark waters of pedophilia and opens the eyes of every viewer ready to face the uncomfortable truth. The film’s team, including a sexologist and a legal adviser, reveals to viewers a brutally crude but terribly real story that could happen before the eyes of any of us…

“Lift Like a Girl” by Maye Zayed (Photo: Sofia Film Fest)

“Lift Like a Girl” by Maye Zayed (Photo: Sofia Film Fest)

“Lift like a girl” on Maye Zayed, a co-production between Egypt, Germany and Denmark, is an intimate journey into the inner world of an ambitious athlete. For more than 20 years, Captain Ramadan has coached world-class weightlifters in Alexandria.

A lifelong hero himself, Ramadan coached his daughter, Nahla Ramadan, one of Egypt’s most famous athletes, to become world champion and trained Abir Abdel Rahman, the first Arab woman to win two Olympic medals. This story follows the path to success of the new student of Ramadan, the determined Zebiba (her name means “raisins”) and her dream to be like the other stars of the captain.

“Gunda” by Victor Kosakovski (Photo: Sofia Film Fest)

“Gunda” by Victor Kosakovski (Photo: Sofia Film Fest)

Gunda on Victor Kosakovski received an honorary diploma in the Documentary Competition of the 25th SFF. The film is a silent documentary about the daily lives of several farm animals – a sow, two cows, a chicken with one leg. The camera presents footage of the animals in rather unusual shots, making them almost alien characters. Gunda is not just a documentary about observation, but a work with a message about cruelty to animals.

It is no coincidence that the team of executive producers also includes Oscar winner Joaquin Phoenix. Kosakowski’s documentary, which won the prize for best film in Stockholm, is a reflection on the brutal attitude of humanity towards animals, to the living nature of our planet.

“About the Moon” by Taiga O “Sullivan (Photo: Sofia Film Fest)

“About the Moon” by Taiga O “Sullivan (Photo: Sofia Film Fest)

“About the moon” of the Irish director Taiga O ”Sullivan is a contemplative, poetic and sincere film, an impressive cinematic love letter to the Moon celebrating in the night sky during the lunar month. With extraordinary shots from around the world, achieving a mesmerizing effect, director O’Sullivan examines the place of the moon in the literature, culture and stories that are told.

“Extraordinary Man” by Aislin Chin-Ye and Chase Joint (Photo: Sofia Film Fest)

“Extraordinary Man” by Aislin Chin-Ye and Chase Joint (Photo: Sofia Film Fest)

“Extraordinary man” on Aislin Chin-Ye and Chase Joint tells an extremely curious story – about the life and work of the American jazz musician and legend in the transsexual movement Billy Tipton. Born Dorothy Lucille Tipton in 1914, he left home in the 1930s to pursue a career in music.

Until his death in 1989, at the age of 74, Tipton managed to keep his secret and no one knew that a woman had been born – even his wife and their adopted children. “The Extraordinary Man” is a charming and exciting film with impressive archival footage, “The Hollywood Reporter wrote in its review.

“X-ray of a family” by Firuze Khosrovani (Photo: Sofia Film Fest)

“X-ray of a family” by Firuze Khosrovani (Photo: Sofia Film Fest)

The world premiere of “X-ray of a family” was at the International Documentary Film Festival in Amsterdam, where he received the award for best film, as well as a prize for creative use of archival materials. In her new work, the Iranian director Firuze Hosrovani turns to his own family to answer the question of what causes the division of society in their country.

Comprised of archival footage, old letters and 140 photos from the family album, the co-production between Norway, Iran and Switzerland presents the connection between progressive and traditional Muslims in Iran’s ever-changing reality.

“Notes on Hitler” by Petra Eperline and Michael Tucker (Photo: Sofia Film Fest)

“Notes on Hitler” by Petra Eperline and Michael Tucker (Photo: Sofia Film Fest)

The film of the directors Petra Eperline and Michael Tucker Notes on Hitler, successfully screened at the New York Documentary Film Festival, shatters illusions that evil cannot rise again. At the heart of the work is Sebastian Hafner’s best-selling book, Notes on Hitler, published in 1978 and published in Bulgaria by Kolibri Publishing House.

The documentary deconstructs the “legend” of Hitler by directing categorical warnings from Hafner’s book to contemporary nationalist leaders who have seized power around the world.

“Hey! Teachers! ” of Julia Vishnevets (Photo: Sofia Film Fest)

“Hey! Teachers! ” of Julia Vishnevets (Photo: Sofia Film Fest)

“Hey! Teachers! ” is the work of a Russian director Julia Vishnevets. Unlike the legendary Pink Floyd song, the eponymous line is not an accusation against the teachers. On the contrary – two young idealists, Katya and Vasya, start working in a school that they really want to change.

Every day, young educators need to gain the trust of teenagers, to stimulate their interests, to educate them to be better people, by confronting nationalism, sexism, homophobia, as well as the resistance of the institution and the whole system. Will they be able to endure their mission?

A TICKET in KEN is in the trade network, the organizers inform.

Don’t miss the promotional combination “two in one” until April 11 – in the cinema and ONLINE

You can use a TICKET in KEN with several options: 1. To watch two movies from online.siff.bg – until April 112. To watch a screening from Sofia Film Fest Spring or Autumn and a bonus one online screening – until April 113. Watch a film of selected screenings at the Cinema House until the end of 2021 and a bonus one online screening – until April 11

Sofia Film Fest is realized with the support of Sofia Municipality.The main co-organizers and partners are the Ministry of Culture, the National Film Center and the EU’s Creative Europe MEDIA Program.


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