Baltic Wave festival 2020

  • 2020 09 17

At the end of the summer the festival Baltic Wave invited people to see new movies from the Baltic countries. This year the center of attention is culture and how it influences our personalities.

The opening movie of the festival was „Isaac“ by Jurgis Matulevičius. This movie is based on a novel by Antanas Škėma and premiered in Talin, a festival called „Black nights“.

The film that closed Baltic Wave festival this year was „Other side of silence“ directed by Algimantas Puipa. This movie is based on Torgny Lindgren‘s book „Bumblebee honey“ and won two awards in the international scandinavian movie festival: best movie award and an award for Juozas Budraitis for being the best actor.

„The premiere of „Isaac“ is continuing the tradition – every year we open the festival with a movie, that hasn‘t been shown in the cinema. These films are usually very high quality artistically and deal with deep questions that provoke conversations. The movie „Isaac“ is a dream of a young director – more like a nightmare – where we can see topics of historical and psychological society‘s traumas intertwine with the topics of creative freedom and opportunities. It‘s a story about relationships with loved ones. Great characters of this movie were created by amazing actors like Aleksas Kazanavičius, Dainius Gavenonis, Severija Janušauskaitė, Martynas Nedzinskas and others. Cameraman Narvydas Naujalis did an amazing job filming this movie. It‘s very interesting to watch it and to think about the interpretations of the epoch suggested by the creative group of people who made created this film“, - says cinema critic and the curator of the festival Rasa Paukštytė.

Ieva Norvilienė, director of Baltic Wave festival, says that every year people hope to see good movies for the whole family : „It‘s a shame, but in Baltic countries there‘s not a lot of high quality movies made for children, so we‘re really happy to have two wonderful animated films from Latvia to show in our program.“

The movie „Away“ directed by Gints Zilbalodis is a beautiful visual tale about a boy who is searching for a way back home together with his little bird friend, while an evil spirit and other challenges are waiting for them. This movie premiered in the international Ansi festival in France. Another animated film „Jacob, Mimmi and the talking dogs“, directed by Edmund Janson, was based on latvian writer‘s Luīzes Pastore‘s book „Dog town“. It went to a lot of international festivals and has won many awards. It tells a story about a boy named Jacob who dreams of being an architect one day. With the help of his cousin and a group of dogs Jacob tries to save Ryga‘s suburb from a greedy buisinessman.

Latvian program includes a long-awaited movie „Oleg“ directed by Juris Kursietis (a part of international Kannes festival program „Un certain regard“). The main role is played by an actor Valentinas Novopolskis. „Oleg“ is not only a study of emmigration trauma and social conditioning, but also a story about the fragility of the human spirit, strenght and faith.

Estonian documentary „Immortal“ by Ksenija Okhapkina ir a disturbing protrait of a little town in Russia. Ritualistic preparation for war here is just everyday life for adults as well as children. Feature film „Scandinavian silence“ by Martti Helde  is a painful and difficult family story which can be seen in many different ways. These estonian movies are connected by exceptional visual culture.

Amongst lithuanian feature films we can see „Motherland“ – a movie that won an award of best Baltic region film in a festival „Black nights“ in Talin. „Nova Lituania“ directed by Karolis Kaupinis won main awards in Ryga‘s and Athens‘ cinema festivals and „Invisible“ by Ignas Jonynas was shown in San Sebastian festival program. There is also a documentary telling a controversial biography of Aleksandras Ferdinandas Bendoraitis „El Padre Medico“ directed by Vytautas Puidokas, well appreciated by movie critics and a documentary „Tulip field“ by Aloyzas Jančoras about the Puipa brothers.

It‘s the second year that the festival Baltic Wave brings attention to the documentary classics. The program „Documentary (no)jokes“ is dedicated to the master of documentary Gediminas Skvarnavičius. This program includes his movies „Džokonda in IV floor“(1977), „Goodbye UFOs“(1979), Viktoras Starošas‘ and Rimtautas Šilinis‘ movie „Where is the Queen’s gold?“ (1971), a movie „We are not afraid of enemies“ by Edmundas Zubavičius (1978) and „City of trolleybusses“ by Giedrė Beinoriūtė (2002).

Some of the movies are shown for free. The sponsors of this festival are Lithuanian cinema center, Lithuanian council for culture and Neringa municipality.