Great names at the 56th Krakow Film Festival

4th May, 2016

Rutger Hauer, Barbara Kopple, Barak i Tomer Heymann, Erik Gandini

Rutger Hauer, Barbara Kopple, Barak i Tomer Heymann, Erik Gandini

This year's edition attracted an exceptionally large number of eminent personalities from the world of film, among them, renowned film critics, producers, and, above all, excellent film-makers, the winners of prestigious awards, including Academy Awards.

A carefully selected jury guarantees professional assessment of the competition films. Among several experts, who accepted the Festival's invitation, there is, among others, Benjamin Cleary, the winner of this year's Academy Award for the short feature film "Stutterer." Ewa Puszczyńska, the producer of the Academy Award winner, the film "Ida," will act as the president of the jury of the international short film competition. Music documentary films will be assessed by a team under the leadership of the video clips pioneer, the author of the very first video clips of the Beatles and the Rolling Stones, Michael Lindsay-Hogg. In contrast, the jury of the national competition will be in session under the chairmanship of Joanna Kos-Krauze, acclaimed screenwriter and director. The president of the documentary film competition jury will be Klaus Eder, General Secretary of the International Federation of Film Critics FIPRESCI.

Important names are also present among film-makers. In the DocFilmMusic competition, two Academy Award winners will participate. The first of them is Morgan Neville, who in 2014 received for his film, "Twenty Feet from Stardom," over 20 prestigious awards, including the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences best documentary film award. His latest motion picture, "The Music of Strangers," which will be released in American cinemas during the festival, will compete for the Golden Heynal award against, among others, the film "Miss Sharon Jones!" by world-class director, Barbara Kopple, who won the Academy Award twice.

Well-known to Polish audience thanks to films such as "Joe Strummer: the Future is Unwritten" and "The Filth and the Fury," the director Julien Temple will return to Krakow for the fourth time. This time, he will show the music documentary film "The Ecstasy of Wilko Johnson," dedicated to the eponymous British vocalist and guitarist. Another film which will take part in the competition is "A Poem Is A Naked Person" by the late eminent American documentary film-maker Les Blank, who made himself famous thanks to numerous films documenting musical phenomena in a broader cultural context. Co-author of the film "Czech Dream," popular in Poland, Filip Remuda, this time will show a melancholic documentary film about Czechoslovakian jazz musicians, "Steam on the River."

The oldest film competition at the Festival, the international short film competition, also attracted extraordinary film-makers. Jay Rosenblatt, the world-famous director, whose films won over 100 awards, also at Krakow Film Festival, will present his latest documentary film "When You Awake." Ayat Najafi, the Iranian artist nominated for the European Film Award in 2015 for "No Land's Song," presented in Krakow, will show a production on the border between short feature film and documentary film: "Nothing Has Ever Happened Here." What is also noteworthy is the spectacular return to the short feature film form of the Polish director Lech Majewski, after almost 40 years. In the competition, the film study "Cuba Libre" will participate, featuring Rutger Hauer, who played one of the main roles in the popular film "Blade Runner."

Another indisputable master of the short feature film is the British director Daniel Mulloy, considered one of the most important film-makers in the world. Three-time winner of the British Film Award, the winner of over a hundred other awards, including the Silver and the Golden Dragon of Krakow Film Festival, will present the feature film "Home," which is a tricky commentary on the migration crisis. The acclaimed Swedish artist, Jonas Odell, the author of countless music videos for bands such as Goldfrapp, Franz Ferdinand and U2, will show his latest film "I Was a Winner," which, just like many others of his productions, is a kind of animated film experiment, comprising of diverse film genres.

Among Polish film-makers, it is worthwhile to mention the artists awarded at Krakow Film Festival, who once again return with their latest productions, among others: Marian Marzyński (the Golden Hobby-Horse 1964!), Rafał Skalski, Maciej Adamek, Wojciech Kasperski and Wiola Sowa. One of the record-breakers, Paweł Łoziński, who won a total of 8 awards in Krakow, will present his latest documentary film "Nawet nie wiesz, jak bardzo cię kocham." Of course, also the greatest masters will participate in the Festival: Marcel Łoziński, who will receive this year the Dragon of Dragons award for lifetime achievement, and Andrzej Wajda, to whom, on the occasion of his anniversary, the documentary film special section is devoted, presenting films in which Wajda features on both sides of the camera. An extensive retrospective is dedicated to Krzysztof Kieślowski, who died 20 years ago.

This year's special section dedicated to Swedish cinematography will be opened by the film "The Swedish Theory of Love" by the eminent documentary film maker, Erik Gandini. One of the most famous Kurds in the world, Bahman Ghobadi, the author of the legendary "A Time for Drunken Horses," will present his new production, "Life on the Border."

The guests of the Festival are not only film-makers, directors and producers, but very often, their protagonists. In this year's edition participates, among others, the mysterious certified neuropath, hypnotist and bio-energy therapist Jurij Mokriszczew, the protagonist of the film "Dar" by Przemek Kamiński. Also accompanied by the director, Barak Heyman, Saar Maoz, the Israeli protagonist of the poignant documentary film "Who's Gonna Love Me Now?" will come to Krakow.

The majority of festival film screenings will end with conversations with the film-makers, open to the public. Some of the eminent guests of Krakow Film Festival will additionally take part in everyday morning meetings, called Critical Mornings, which will be hosted by well-known film critics, who participated in selecting the festival films.

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