The 49th edition of Visions du Réel, International Film Festival Nyon is starting. A unique and distinctive event in its genre among the European film festivals, the only Swiss festival entirely dedicated to documentary cinema, emerging voices and new expressions in the landscape of documentary filmmaking, Visions du Réel will feature a wide range of creative documentary films from all around the world. From 13th to 21st April a very rich, diverse and exciting programming designed in competitive and non-competitive sections which include International Film Feature Competition, National Competition, Burning Lights, Grand Angle, Latitudes, Opening Scenes, Maitre du Réel.
INTERNATIONAL FILM FEATURE COMPETITION
D IS FOR DIVISION by Davis Simanis – In 1940 on the border between Latvia and the USSR, a woman is killed as she tried to protect her son from the attack of the Soviets. 80 years later, a surveillance post for migrants attempting to reach Europe, a religious procession against the glorification of war, the filming of Islamist terrorists in the Latvian countryside. A journey across the border of the ex Soviet Union and Latvia, from the 1940s to the present day, to another separation, between Europe and Russia.
LOS FANTASMAS DEL CARIBE by Felipe Monroy – The peace process between FARC and government of Bogotà, a turning point after a war that ravaged and split the country more than 50 years of war. The Colombian filmmaker Felipe Monroy comes back to his land to look at the ghosts of the past straight in the eyes provoking questions and doubt on national reconciliation and forgiveness.
SRBENKA by Nebojša Slijepčević – A play as a catharsis, a collective psychotherapy to break the vicious circle of revenge. In Croatian schools of today Serbian pupils continue to be taken for the “enemies”. Nebojša Slijepčević enters with the camera one of these schools performing with the students the “the Zec affair”, the true story of Aleksandra Zec, a Serbian teenager who was orrobly lynched in Zagreb in 1991. An innocent victim of outbreak of hatred between Serbs and Croatians.
THE TRIAL by Maria Augista Ramos – The affair of the state-owned oil company Petrobras, the allegations of Eduardo Cunha’s, the involvment of the incumbent president Michel Temer, the impeachment process of the former president Dilma Rousseff, whose personal story has made her a symbol for the quest of democracy of the Brazilian people.
BURNING LIGHTS COMPETITION
CURSED DAYS by Artem Iurchenko – An engraving studio in the city-centre of Kiev in 2014. Vladimir devotes himself to teaching precise lines to his young students. Inside the the workshop time seems suspended, while outside blood riots rage in Maidan Nezalezhnosti.
RAILWAY MEN by Erige Sehiri – The aftermath of the revolution in Tunisia. Un uncompromising light onto what still needs to be done in the country through the Tunisian railways and five characters, Ahmed, Afef, Issam, Abee and Najib protagonists and witnesses of a difficult transformation process that from the Tunisian railways invests the whole of Tunisian post-revolutionary society.
CHACO by Daniele Incalcaterra and Fausta Quattrini – The tragic deforestation of Chaco in Paraguay. The battle of Daniele Incalcaterra against the fatal intertwining of financial interest and fraudulent bureaucracy in the attempt of saving 5000 hectares of virgin forest in Paraguayan Chaco from project aimed at producing monoculture and create a scientific observatory to study the devastating effects of deforestation.
CLOSER TO GOD by Annette Berger and Grete Jentze – The traditional religious chants in Pakistan are passed on from generation to generation as a form of high artistic expression, but also as a form of mysticism. A portrait of the transcendental dimension of the Islam mystical practices.
DISPOSSESSION by Mathieu Roy – All over the world small farmers are deprived of their land by corporations backed by neo-liberal policies. Violence, debt, human rights stepped on, all this feeds the cycle of poverty and causing new forms of slavery, suicides, illness and migration.
THE REMNANTS by Paolo Barbieri and Riccardo Russo – Between 1964 and 1973 the United States’ airplanes have dropped over two millions explosive devices and over 500,000 bombing missions. Laos never declared war on other countries, still it is the most heavily bombed country in modern history. Forty years later, there is lot of unexploded bombs across the country, being transforming in objects of every day’s life
BOXING LIBREVILLE by Amédée Pacôme Nkoulou – Christ trains as a boxer by day, at night he earns his living as a doorman at nightclubs of Libreas ville in Gabon. Against this backdrop, the presidential elections and the hope for a democratic transition that puts an end to the “Bongo’s regime”, of the the outgoing president Ali Bongo, in power since 2009, son of Omar Bongo, who led the country for over forty years.
ANOTE’S ARK by Matthieu Rytz – Kiribati Pacific atoll will disappear within decades due to rising sea levels and climate change. An entire nation will be evacuated and migrate elsewhere.
OF FATHERS AND SONS by Talal Derki – Talal Derki lived for more than two years with the family of Abu Osama, an Al-Nusra fighter in a small village in northern Syria. With his camera he focused mainly on the children trained as children to become soldiers of God, Jihadi fighters who must never cry.
GOLDEN DAWN GIRLS by Håvard Bustnes – Golden Dawn, the Greek ultra-nationalist party was elected to the parliament in 2012. The leaders have all been condemned and jailed on the charge of running a “criminal organisation”. Håvard Bustnes brings to light one of the most dangerous Neo-Nazi parties in Europe through the stories of their mothers and wives.
WHEN ARABS DANCED by Jawad Rhalib – The many facets of Arab culture that have sadly been overshadowed by Daesh’s terrorism. Music, dance, literature, philosophy, the cultural complexity of the Arab identity crushed by the destructive fundamentalism.
AMAL by Mohamed Siam – The film follows five years in the life of a young, Egyptian woman’s life, from when she was 14 years old on the barricades of Tahrir Square to adult woman with dreams for the future, dreams of liberty and democracy. The story of Amal is the story of an entire generation still demanding change and freedom.
ON THE HILLSIDES by Abdallah Badis – A documentary road movie set in Algeria countryside. Eight young urban boys embark on an adventure towards the discovery of their country.
WHEN WAR COMES by Jan Gebert – Peter seems to be a typical European teenager. He goes to college, has a girlfriend and a family he lives with. Peter is actually more. He is the head of a paramilitary group “Slovenskí branci”, equipped with arms, wearing uniforms, full of hate for refugees and ready for wartime. Peter plans for his future in politics. A frightening account of how the xenophobic discourse becomes majoritarian in Slovakia and and other places in Europe.
GORA by Stefan Malešević – A portrait of the Gorani, a Slavic Muslim minority, living in the mountains of Kosovo, on the border with Macedonia and Albania.
THE OTHER SIDE OF EVERYTHING by Mila Turaljic – A Belgrade apartment divided in two tells the story of a family and serves as a symbol of a country in political turmoil. Srbijanka, a political activist playing a leading role in the revolution, still lives in one half of the original apartment. The door remained unopened all all the way through civil war, the breakup of Yugoslavia, aerial bombardments and revolution.
THETA RHYTHM by Bojan Fajfrić – The reconstruction of crucial moment in Serbia’s history. The 8th meeting of the Serbian Communist Party in 1987 and the rise to power of Slobodan Milošević.
DEPTH TWO by Ognjen Glanovic – In 2001 and 2002 more than 800 hundreds bodies were dug up in mass graves in the outskirts of Belgrade, in Batajnica and Bajna Basta. Civilians killed in different places in Kosovo and then transported to Serbia in the attempt to cover the traces of the pogrom committed by Serbian military against the Kosovar Albanians short before NATO’s bombing. Depth Two, no body no crime, that was the name of this appalling operation wanted by Belgrade.