Starting from 7 November, for the eleventh time European film forum “Scanorama” will prove just how strong Lithuanian documentary is. Four documentary films will be premiered during the festival – three merely by Lithuanian directors (“Cenotaph”, “Final Destination”, Tricolour”) and one Lithuanian-German co-operative film (“Julia”).

Still from Julia.

Still from Julia.

“Filmmakers are bravely talking about uncomfortable past events and complicated dramas of modern-day life. It is pleasant to see, that program has included selection of films that already succeeded in the international film festivals. That proves the fact, that we are strong and interesting” – claims Gražina Arlickaitė, director of European film forum “Scanorama”

Two days after the festival opening, on 9 November, Audrius Stonys will introduce the long-awaited documentary film “Cenotaph”. It tells a story about a grave under the roots a big oak. Three unknown soldiers rest in it– two Russians and a German. After more than 70 years, director together with a group of archaeologists decided to go on a quest to explore this grave.

“We wanted to find out the mystery of this grave that would allow us to reach the truth” – states A. Stonys, director of the film.

In his latest film, Lithuanian master of documentary, recognised and enhanced in Europe, remains true to himself. While analysing subjects of time and memories, director does everything poetically controlling film language, gently yet with great inner strength.

J. Jackie Baier will return to “Scanorama” once again. Just two years ago, during screenings of her documentary film “House of Shame”, cinema halls were simply packed with all the people wishing to watch this film. This year, on 11 November, director will present a film, which raised big interest and discussions in Venice Film Festival – “Julia”. This is very open and thrilling story about a transsexual girl from Lithuania. During adolescence, she was forced to run away from home and ended up in Germany, where she got involved in a prostitution, and now she wanders through the streets of Berlin – alone, mentally and physically exhausted, trying to find warmth. In the film we are observing how, after many years, she returns to her hometown Klaipeda.

“To work with J. Jackie Baier and the character, Julia, was one of the most difficult yet the most unique experiences. It is a shocking and a lot of questions posing journey of an individual towards self-destruction” – tells director’s assistant Tomas Smulkis.

On 10 November, Ričardas Marcinkus will introduce a documentary film “Final Destination”, that, just few weeks ago, was selected for a program at Amsterdam Documentary Film festival (IDFA). Film tells a story about 55 years old Povilas and his odyssey. From prison to retirement home, from retirement home to the streets, where, one might think, that he permanently ends up on drugs. It seems that there is no way to get out from under, unless protagonist will seek help in rehabilitation, but he is hesitating.

“Povilas –a multifaceted person. One second you feel sorry for him, another – you hate him. Through the film, I wanted to convey these contradictory feelings to the audience” – tells film director R. Marcinkus.

Latest film by a poet, singer and theatre and cinema director Vytautas V. Landsbergis is “Tricolour”- a portrait of the freedom fighters, which is drawn by twelve former partisans and postal workers. According to the director, he wanted to create authentic, true and realistic portrait of a post-war individual, to tell the entire tragic story – from leaving home till first battles and betrayals. The film will be premiered in “Scanorama” on 13 November.

For the full programme please see website of the festival.