24th Cottbus Festival of the East European Cinema

Germany, November 4 - November 9 2014

The jury

Janka Barkoczi (Hungary), Dinu-Ioan Nicula (Romania), Frank Blum (Germany)

Awarded films

The film festival of Cottbus, which is almost a quarter of a century old, welcomed various movies from Central and Eastern Europe over six days between the 4th and 9th of November. The annual film showcase has traditionally been focused on the latest premieres from the region, and offered an excellent special program around hot topics and hidden treasures from the countries in question. In parallel with the three competitions (Feature Film, Short Film, German-Polish Youth Film), the audience could submerge themselves in a sensitive collection of movies about sexual diversity (Focus), take a closer look at the actual film industry of Ukraine (Specials), Poland (Polskye Horyzonty) and Russia (Russky Den), watch National Hits, a Spectrum selection and films connected local topics with Serbian references in the brand new section Home | Domownja. Twelve feature films competed for the Main Prize of 20,000 euros and the three-coloured glass award, named Lubina after the popular Serbian girl’s name which means “charming one”. The unquestionable and absolute winner of the closing night was young Russian director Ivan I. Tverdovsky, whose debut feature Corrections Class (Klass Korrektsii) won three prizes in one hour. Besides the FIPRESCI Prize, this touching movie also came away with the Main Prize and the Prize of the Ecumenical Jury. The Special Prize for Best Director went to Alexander Kott for Test (Ispytanie), Piroska Molnár was awarded as an outstanding actress for her role in Free Fall (Szabadesés) by György Pálfi, and Emir Hadzihafizbegovic was also honoured as an outstanding actor for his part in These Are the Rules (Takva Su Pravila) by director Ognjen Svilicic. Isa Qosja deservedly won a Special Mention for his movie Three Windows and a Hanging (Tri Dritare Dhe Një Varje), treating yet unresolved women’s issues in the aftermath of the Kosovo war. This year’s edition of the festival closed on the same day the 25th anniversary commemorations of the fall of the Berlin Wall began. Since peaceful demonstration destroyed the frontier the friendly, openminded atmosphere of the Brandenburgian event keeps East and West connected today. The way to fight against intolerance and segregation is easier nowadays: you just have to follow the symbolic blue lines painted on the sidewalk, connecting the cinemas and festival locations of the city of Cottbus. (Janka Barkóczi)

FilmFestival Cottbus – Festival of the East European Cinema: