East of the West - Competition 

  • Aga's House Agův dům / Shpia e Agës
    Directed by: Lendita Zeqiraj
    Kosovo, Croatia, France, Albania, 2019, 107 min

    A diverse group of women live in a remote mountain location. The only male element in the house is nine-year-old Aga, the son of one of the women. Opening the East of the West competition, Lendita Zeqiraj’s debut authentically re-creates the vibrant world of her energetic female protagonists, in which the flow of stories, the sound of singing, and coarse humor cannot mask the dark undertone of their country’s wartime past and its enduring ethnic tensions.

  • Arrest Vazba / Arest
    Directed by: Andrei Cohn
    Romania, 2019, 126 min

    August 1983, somewhere in Romania. The bright summer’s day that Dinu is spending with his family on the beach is darkened by the arrival of the police and his unexplained arrest. He finds himself sharing a cell with small-time crook Vali, who soon proves to be quite a sinister fellow inmate. A formally inventive drama about the chilling absurdity of totalitarian regimes.

  • The Bull Býk / Byk
    Directed by: Boris Akopov
    Russia, 2019, 99 min

    Gang leader Anton Bykov, known as the Bull, ends up at the police station after a scuffle with a rival criminal group. He only manages to avoid prison thanks to the intervention of a feared mafia boss, who nevertheless asks him to pull off a risky job in return. A taut feature debut from one-time ballet dancer Boris Akopov, surprising for its maturity and compulsive dynamism.

  • A Certain Kind of Silence Tiché doteky / Tiché doteky
    Directed by: Michal Hogenauer
    Czech Republic, Netherlands, Latvia, 2019, 96 min

    Mia goes to live with a family as their au pair. As soon as she arrives, however, she discovers that they have strict household rules: breaking any of them will lead to her immediate dismissal. The young woman has to decide whether to preserve her integrity or conform to a lifestyle that is utterly alien to her.

  • Last Visit Poslední návštěva / Akher Ziyarah
    Directed by: Abdulmohsen Aldhabaan
    Saudi Arabia, 2019, 75 min

    On the way to a wedding Nasser finds out that his father is dying. He changes plans and heads straight off with his adolescent son Waleed to his dad’s small town. However, the strictly upheld customs they encounter in this rural environment start to affect Waleed and Nasser’s relationship. Using the story of a family encounter as its backdrop, the film adopts a realistic approach to discussing Islamic traditions while it examines the true nature of paternal love.

  • Mamonga Mamonga / Mamonga
    Directed by: Stefan Malešević
    Serbia, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Montenegro, 2019, 92 min

    Jovana works behind the counter at a bakery in the small town where she lives with her father. Her somewhat shy peer Marko is supposed to follow in his own father’s footsteps and become a truck driver. But the events of one night change both their lives… Serbian director Stefan Malešević debuts with a formally distinctive triptych whose loose narrative structure challenges the viewer to actively participate in putting together the pieces of the mosaic.

  • My Thoughts Are Silent Mé tiché myšlenky / Moi dumki tikhi
    Directed by: Antonio Lukich
    Ukraine, 2019, 104 min

    Twenty-five-year-old Vadym works as a sound recordist. When a generous job offer comes along which could help him fulfil his dream to move to Canada, he doesn’t think twice and sets out to record the sounds of animals in the Carpathians… In his visually inspired road movie, subtly enhanced by its synthesized score, debuting director Antonio Lukich demonstrates a highly unusual talent for constructing tragicomic situations.

  • Nova Lituania Nova Lituania / Nova Lituania
    Directed by: Karolis Kaupinis
    Lithuania, 2019, 96 min

    1938. A new war looms on the horizon. Geographer Gruodis comes up with a novel solution to the situation: he proposes creating a “backup Lithuania” overseas, a place where the country’s inhabitants could move in case of danger… Working with carefully composed black-and-white shots, debuting director Karolis Kaupinis has forged this original idea into the gripping drama of a man trying to save his homeland while facing the collapse of his marriage.

  • Passed by Censor Cenzor / Görülmüştür
    Directed by: Serhat Karaaslan
    Turkey, Germany, France, 2018, 95 min

    Zakir works in a prison as a censor. Each day he reads dozens of letters, carefully blacking out everything not meant for the eyes of those serving time. A photograph inserted into one of the envelopes disrupts his regular routine, and his interest in the unknown woman in the picture grows into an obsession. A psychological study of an individual who gradually loses his personal and professional integrity while becoming trapped in his own fantasy world.

  • Scandinavian Silence Skandinávské mlčení / Skandinaavia vaikus
    Directed by: Martti Helde
    Estonia, France, Belgium, 2019, 75 min

    A brother and sister set out across a silent winter landscape, but after years apart they have difficulty communicating. This minimalist study of a difficult sibling relationship presents three versions of the same story, asking whether time can heal the wounds of the past.

  • Silent Days Hluché dny / Hluché dni
    Directed by: Pavol Pekarčík
    Slovak Republic, Czech Republic, 2019, 81 min

    The heroes of the four stories told in Silent Days all have their dreams and desires. But they also have something else in common: they live on the fringes of society in a private world closed off from the outside – even more so since they cannot hear… In a film partaking of both fiction and documentary, hearing-impaired Romany children move about in their own environment as director Pavol Pekarčík deftly textures little stories reflecting their inner lives.

    Film is also part of the section People Next Door.

  • Zizotek Zizotek / Zizotek
    Directed by: Vardis Marinakis
    Greece, 2019, 92 min

    After nine-year-old Jason is abandoned by his mother at a folk festival, he takes refuge in a cabin in the middle of the forest belonging to a mute loner named Minas. Although at first the man won’t take him in, a series of circumstances eventually leads them to form a family – something both of them have lacked for a long time. A touching tale of harmony and the yearning for intimacy that will captivate audiences with its dreamlike atmosphere.


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