Film Archive

Countries (Film Archive)

A Hole in the Head

Documentary Film
Czech Republic,
Slovakia
2016
92 minutes
subtitles: 
English

Credits DOK Leipzig Logo

Barbara Janišová Feglová
Robert Kirchhoff
Miroslav Tóth
Juraj Chlpík
Jan Daňhel
Robert Kirchhoff
Václav Flégl
A small art gallery somewhere in Serbia which exhibits only works by Roma. Is Clinton not Roma, too? The gallery owner isn’t certain. But Antonio Banderas is Roma, and Yul Brynner. They just don’t have the courage to admit it. This touching scene of cultural self-assurance is part of a narrative about the Roma Holocaust which has been almost completely erased from European memory and whose traces the director follows meticulously. A film against forgetting.

We meet people from France, Serbia, Germany, the Czech Republic and Poland who got caught up in the Nazi murder machine as children. Rita was less than three weeks old when SS doctors performed horrible experiments on her in a Würzburg hospital. Her twin sister died, she survived with a “hole in the head”. Raymond, 90 years old, an extremely alert Roma, reminds us that it was the French Gendarmerie who herded them together, not the Germans. Today, the same police enter his caravan without a search warrant to arrest three of his sons because they came to his aid. So what has changed? A question that arises at every stop of this commemorative journey and forces us to take a stand and get rid of ideological garbage.

Matthias Heeder


Nominated for MDR Film Prize
Kids DOK 2018
Auuuna Lina Šuková

Little Lina meets the big bad wolf on her birthday. Since she’s wearing a red cap and walking through a dark forest, we expect the classic tale of Little Red Riding Hood. But then...

Auuuna

Animated Film
Slovakia
2017
8 minutes
subtitles: 
English

Credits DOK Leipzig Logo

Lina Šuková (Academy of Performing Arts – Film and Television Faculty)
Lina Šuková
Pablo Pico
Petra Hoťková
Lina Šuková, Kristína Saganová, Katarína Kočanová
Dominika Petríková
Natália Jancová
Little Lina meets the big bad wolf on her birthday. Since she’s wearing a red cap and walking through a dark forest, we expect the classic tale of Little Red Riding Hood. But then the girl befriends the speaking she-wolf and everything turns out differently. The filmmaker takes the audience to a magic animated dream world and re-writes an old tale.

Kim Busch
Next Masters Wettbewerb 2018
Denisa, a Story of a Friend Mária Brnušáková

All Denisa really wants is love. She’s been looking for it in men ever since she was a teenager. Mária Brnušáková has filmed her friend over a couple of years – the portrait is rough.

Denisa, a Story of a Friend

Documentary Film
Slovakia
2017
53 minutes
subtitles: 
English

Credits DOK Leipzig Logo

Academy of Performing Arts – Film and Television Faculty
Mária Brnušáková
Mária Brnušáková
Mária Brnušáková, Tomáš Holocsy
Mária Brnušáková
Mária Brnušáková
There’s not only love but also the craving for love. Denisa, a young Slovak woman, is craving it, as she explains right at the start: “I want love. Not money, cash, bucks … Just love, that’s it.” Denisa wants to be in a relationship with a man at all costs, and she has very precise ideas of what he should look and be like: one of them resembled a member of the Kelly Family, before she fixated on police officers. All her relationships are bumpy. The first also produced a little boy whom Denisa loses sight of after separating from his father. Mária Brnušáková’s long term portrait is rough and unadorned. While we first meet Denisa as a giddy teenager who considers cooking for her husband a fun way to pass the time, the young woman’s attitude changes over the years. A special sense of humour and a certain indomitable air stay the same, though: at first Denisa struggles to win the men’s love, but the focus of her fight later shifts to re-establishing contact with her son.

Carolin Weidner


Nominated for the MDR Film Prize

Eugenic Minds

Documentary Film
Czech Republic,
Slovakia
2013
76 minutes
subtitles: 
English

Credits DOK Leipzig Logo

Jiří Konečný
Pavel Štingl
Jaroslav Kořán
Miroslav Janek
Tonička Janková, Otakar Šenovský
Jan Míka
Pavel Štingl
Vladimír Chrastil
Expressive faces, body parts, anatomical associations. Human beings come in a variety of forms: “Some are smart, some are dumb, some are good-looking, some are ugly …” The term eugenics comes from the Greek. It means something like “good lineage” and is the term used for the science of improving genetic disposition by choosing the right sexual partner. In order to spare humanity “genetic burdens”, the smart and good-looking ones are chosen. If humans make the selection, they take “God’s work into their own hands”. The Third Reich used and expanded this science to serve its ideology, with the result that the term was avoided and at last forgotten. Captivating archive material, original animations and their graphic “insemination”, for example when the “transparent woman” frequently mingles with the crowds, reflect the narrative of a fascinating science practiced to the point of lunacy. This tale reveals more about the human species than any anthropometrical measurement ever could.

Claudia Lehmann

My Unknown Soldier

Documentary Film
Czech Republic,
Latvia,
Slovakia
2018
79 minutes
subtitles: 
English

Credits DOK Leipzig Logo

Michal Kráčmer, Sergei Serpuhov
Anna Kryvenko
Andris Dzenitis, Yair Elazar Glotman, David Střeleček
Radka Šišuláková
Daria Chernyak
Anna Kryvenko
Viktor Krivosudský
The Prague Spring, Soviet tanks, the invasion of Warsaw Pact troops, the epoch-making year of 1968: the starting points of a family history between Czechia, Ukraine and Russia. “The occupation translates to a man with a dachshund being entitled to yell at a young girl in a tram because he can’t tell Ukrainian and Russian apart.”

A series of family album photos from which a man was removed sets Anna Kryvenko, a Ukrainian who studies film in Prague, on the trail of her great-uncle: the “unknown soldier”, to whom so many monuments are dedicated that one almost forgets that this sweeping gesture of remembrance refers to concrete faces, names, dates of birth and death, biographies cut short. After some initial hesitation the filmmaker’s family break their silence and gradually the pieces combine to form a new picture in which family and world history intersect.

Fabian Tietke


Nominated for the MDR Film Prize

Normalization

Documentary Film
Czech Republic,
Slovakia
2013
100 minutes
subtitles: 
English

Credits DOK Leipzig Logo

Robert Kirchhoff, coproducer: Hypermarket Film, CzechTV
Robert Kirchhoff
Peter Zagar
Ján Meliš
Jana Vlčková, Adam Brothánek
Jozef Giertli Danglár
Robert Kirchhoff
Václav Flegl, Michal Gábor
Only a moment ago, 19-year-old medical student Ludmilla Cervanova had smiled into the camera. Her body was found in a river in a small Slovak town in 1976. Seven men were responsible for the horrifying rape and death of the girl. Fortunately, the perpetrators were apprehended and condemned. But though Ludmilla was drowned alive, oddly enough no signs of violence could be found on the body. Though the murderers have been in prison for years, not one of them can remember the terrible crime. Though a number of witnesses confirmed the innocence of the condemned men, none of them was heard in court. Robert Kirchhoff lets these people talk; many others fall silent when faced with his questions about plausible facts. He delves deeply into a case that has remained an unsolved puzzle in Slovak history until today. He reconstructs a “map of events” and paints a picture that shows power, its abuse, manipulation, the perfidiousness of intelligence services and the political machinations of a country. “Normalization” demonstrates in the best sense what film is capable of. And the truth is still concealed behind the innocent smile of a 19-year-old girl.

Claudia Lehmann



Awarded with a Honorary Mention in the International Competition Documentary Film and the Prize of the Ecumenical Jury 2013

Pandas

Animated Film
Czech Republic,
Slovakia
2013
12 minutes
subtitles: 
English

Credits DOK Leipzig Logo

Peter Badač, Tomáš Hrubý
Matúš Vizár
Ink Midget
Matěj Šámal, Matúš Vizár, Martin Búřil
Matúš Vizár, Adrián Hnát, Dan Stanchev, Marek Pokorný, Dalibor Kristek
Matúš Vizár
Miloš Hanzély
Panda bears are the product of several million years of evolution. They are quiet, depressed and, unfortunately, not very active. To save them from extinction they are preserved and bred in zoos. But they are rather more adaptive than humanity would like them to be.

Stability

Animated Film
Slovakia
2015
18 minutes
subtitles: 
_without dialogue / subtitles

Credits DOK Leipzig Logo

Peter Badač
Daniela Krajčová
Daniel Matej
František Krähenbiel
Daniela Krajčová
Daniela Krajčová
Adam Matej, Tobiáš Potočný
At home the young woman is a passive observer – her parents’ daily quarrelling has no effect on her except perhaps to set an imaginary cinema of the mind in motion. Then she leaves for the big city. Falling in love. Working. That’s what her new freedom could bring, but this alienating loneliness restricts her life even here. Daniela Krajčová uses chalk animations and expressive music to show how parental relationship patterns affect us even from a distance. An artistic journey into the labyrinth of (co-)dependence.

Nadja Rademacher

The Kite

Animated Film
Czech Republic,
Poland,
Slovakia
2019
13 minutes
subtitles: 
_without dialogue / subtitles

Credits DOK Leipzig Logo

Peter Badač
Martin Smatana
Aliaksander Yasinski
Ondřej Nedvěd
Lucie Navrátilová
Martin Smatana, Martyna Koleniec, Łukasz Grynda, Matouš Valchař, Stanisław Szostak, Piotr Chmielewski
Martin Smatana
Viera Marinová
How nice to be able to drop by at grandfather’s on your way home and discover the world with him. A homemade kite makes the grandkid’s heart beat faster and remains an important tie to grandfather – even after he dies. A puppet animation about how to deal with grief which shows that two people can be close even beyond death.

Marie-Thérèse Antony
Late Harvest 2019
The Wind. A Documentary Thriller Michał Bielawski

The wind, the wind, the heavenly child: a character study of a landscape and an exceptional case of regional climate which blows through Polish forests, organisms and souls.

The Wind. A Documentary Thriller

Documentary Film
Poland,
Slovakia
2019
75 minutes
subtitles: 
English
German

Credits DOK Leipzig Logo

Maciej Kubicki
Michał Bielawski
Bartłomiej Solik
Hubert Pusek
Michał Bielawski
When the Halny rises in the High Tatras in the south of Poland, the number of emergency calls spikes. The Halny is a wind that makes people nervous, stresses them and intensifies their crises. In his “documentary thriller”, Michał Bielawski tells the story of a force of nature and of the people who have to live with the wind.

Nothing is harder to calculate than the weather, because it has a different effect on every organism and every soul. Bielawski approaches his weather report from the two endpoints of the axis of events: In impressive panoramic shots, he shows how the Halny is created by thick clouds rolling down from the mountains into the narrow valleys. He also shows how the people have adapted to the upheavals and occasional bigger or smaller natural disasters. A particularly impressive protagonist even seems to identify with this unique regional world: Teresa hugs the trees; she wants to have a spot of her own in the protected forest. She becomes the embodiment of a landscape of which Michał Bielawski, with his images and a strong, atmospheric soundtrack, has created almost a character study.

Bert Rebhandl



Awarded with the MDR Film Prize.