Transformations of Febiofest through Time (exhibition)

Febiofest was founded in 1993 in Prague as an initiative of Slovak director Fero Fenič, founder of the independent production company Febio. It was originally a non-commercial display of cinematography and video. In the first decade of the new millennium, the Bratislava branch broke apart and it was integrated among the activities of the Association of Slovak Film Clubs. An international competition of short films from the V4 countries was opened in 2014, thus transforming the event into a festival titled Febiofest IFCF. The festival awards for a contribution to Slovak or international cinematography went to distinctive creative personalities in the likes of Andrzej Wajda, Miklós Jancsó, Krzysztof Zanussi, Otar Iosseliani, Agnieszka Holland, Peter Solan, Dušan Hanák and many others. The exhibition commemorates important moments from the festival’s history. It is open until April 1.


Jerzy Kawalerowicz. Painter of the 10th Muse (exhibition)

The exhibition titled Jerzy Kawalerowicz. Painter of the 10th Muse was curated by the Museum of Cinematography in Lodz in 2012 on the occasion of the birth and the 5th death anniversary of the director Jerzy Kawalerowicz, one of the best Polish filmmakers and the creator of films such as Night Train, Pharaoh, The Inn, Mother Joan of the Angels or Quo Vadis. He was a laureate of prestigious film awards form Cannes, Venice, Berlin and more, as well as a long-time director of the film company Kadr. The exhibition is biographical and retrospective, presenting for the first time Jerzy Kawalerowicz’s rich iconographic material, including his personal documents and a collection of his film posters from all over the world (Argentina, Cuba, Russia, Czechia, Spain, Italy, France, USA, Germany or Japan), which are a proof of the great popularity of both himself and his films. The exhibition maps Kawalerowicz’s work in film front to back, and it is as if the director himself guides you through the exhibition through his authorial thoughts, which are included in the commentary. The exhibition is open until April 6.


Masterclass: Piotr Stasik

His short-length and medium-length films such as 7x Moscow, A Diary of a Journey and The Last Day of Summer have achieved success at numerous prestigious documentary film festivals across Europe, winning several awards and receiving a nomination at European Film Awards (21x New York). His latest film, Opera About Poland, won the main prize in the section “Between the Seas” at last year’s Ji.hlava IDFF.


Launch of the book Censorship and Documentary Cinema Post-1989 + Carte blanche: Martin Palúch

Martin Palúch’s monography titled Censorship and Documentary Cinema Post-1989 deals with the forms and manifestations of censorship which appeared in post-1989 Slovakia and which were related to documentary cinema. Investigative documentaries surely became the most vulnerable genre – not just in Slovakia, but also in the United States. In the beginning, the author offers a short historical overview of the mechanisms behind the state censorship implemented during the period of the first Czechoslovak Republic (1918 – 1938), the WWII Slovak Republic (1939 – 1945) and the former Czechoslovakia (1948 – 1989). Its residue gradually appeared in the democratic Slovak Republic as well (1993 onward), especially in the form of political and religious pressure on original production and its authors, mostly imposed by representatives of governing parties, their nominees, interest groups and socialist actors performing in films.

The expression carte blanche borrowed from French could be translated as “freedom to choose” or “a wild card”. On the occasion of the publication of his new monography, Martin Palúch was given the opportunity to present a single film of his choice. The subject matter of Palúch’s book is perfectly illustrated by a controversial Slovak film dealing with the social, political and ethical background of the most notorious Slovak scandal of the 1980s. Let Martin Palúch surprise you with his pick and don’t miss the unique opportunity to see a film which is rarely screened publicly.

Martin Palúch is a film scientist and a teacher. Since 2002 he has worked as a senior scientist in the Institute of Theatre and Film Research of the Slovak Academy of Sciences in Bratislava. At the same time, he gives lectures at the Faculty of Dramatic Arts at the Academy of Arts in Banská Bystrica, and the Faculty of Film and Television at the Academy of Performing Arts in Bratislava. He authored literary publications such as Perception in the Mirror of Photography and Film (2010) and Authorial Documentary Cinema in Post-1989 Slovakia (2015), and he co-authored the monography Ivan Palúch, the Actor (2008).


Case Study: Louise-Michel

The film Louise-Michel combines elements of grotesque along with surrealist absurdity, adding a touch of the authors’ signature “political incorrectness”. At a special screening of the film accompanied by Benoît Delépin and Gustav Kervern themselves, the audience will have a chance to discover what lies beyond the long-standing collaboration of this famed directorial duo.


Case Study: Gypsy

Filmed by the creative duo Šulík – Lipták and having received the Special Jury Prize at Karlovy Vary IFF, this film tells the story of Adam, a Roma boy whose father is killed. On the occasion of František Lipták receiving an award at the 25th Febiofest IFCF, we will host a special screening of the film with an introduction and a discussion with the director himself. It is a unique opportunity to view the film through a different lens – the lens of a production designer. 


Lecture by Josef Rauvolf on David Cronenberg’s Naked Lunch

The novel Naked Lunch written by the American writer and artist Willian S. Burroughs (1914 – 1997) not only provoked shocked reactions in the time of its publication – the book was even subject to a trial in 1964 – but also significantly transformed the perception of what constitutes as a literary subject and what methods of writing can be used. Allen Ginsberg, Burroughs’s friend, declared later on: „Naked Lunch is one of the most important books of the twentieth century. It is predominantly great fun in its use of unbridled humor. It is a wonderful satire on numerous modern American myths – advertising, the police, diplomacy and the government. It is a guide on how to defy totalitarian brainwashing, and once you read Naked Lunch, you become cleverer and cleverer as you read on. You grow more skeptical.” The allegedly unfilmable novel was brought to silver screen in 1991 by the Canadian director David Cronenberg, who made sure not to avoid even the sharper aspects of Burroughs’s magnum opus. (Josef Rauvolf)


The Poisoned Light + TMA (film screening with live musical accompaniment)

This screening of the film The Poisoned Light presents an attractive combination of a forgotten gem of the silent era of Czech cinema with a contemporary sound of the electronic club scene. The main asset of the film is the dynamism of narration and style, as it blends into a line of layers, planes and rhythms composed by Tomáš Martínek, who performs under the name TMA. Sinister moments depicting the theft of blueprints of a groundbreaking invention is carefully complemented by a soundscape consisting of the inverted use of classical instruments in a digital interface, the kick drum paving the way towards the resolution of the investigation as well as the grand finale. The music was composed solely to accompany this film on the occasion of the DVD release of films by Jan S. Kolár in the National Film Archive in Prague, and yet there is still room for live interpretation. All the new stimuli and ideas impact the performance, which makes every single screening a unique experience.

MARCH 18, 8:00 PM – Café Berlinka, SNG

The Bloody Lady + Talent Transport (film screening with live musical accompaniment)

The Bloody Lady is the second animated film by the legendary Slovak animator Viktor Kubala. Inspired by a historical legend of the cruel lady of Čachtice, the film juggles themes of crime and love. He captures the eternal struggle between good and evil on the backdrop of a romantic love story with elements of both comedy and tragedy. The film will be accompanied by live music performed by a trio of musicians under the name Talent Transport – Vladislav “Slnko” Šarišský, Marián Slávka and Filip Hittrich. The mixture of romance and horror in The Bloody Lady and Talent Transport’s distinctive progressive authorial and interpretational style promises an unforgettable viewing experience.


The Spiritual Dimension of a Film

The project titled The Spiritual Dimension of a Film consists of looking for an interpretation of a film as a source of spirituality and of its complicity in the viewer’s spiritual life. 2018 Febiofest IFCF will host the pilot screening of the project. Each lecturer will present the film of their choice and participate in a moderated discussion open to the audience after the film’s screening. The first lecturer will be the Roman Catholic auxiliary bishop Mons. prof. ThDr. Jozef Haľko, PhD. and he will present the American film The Thin Red Line.


Masterclass: Leos Carax

Leox Carax rose to fame in the 80s and 90s as a representative of cinéma du look. His films such as Bad Blood, The Lovers on the Bridge or his most recent one after a 13-year hiatus, Holy Motors, are an integral part of the club film library and have received several awards from international festivals including Cannes and Berlin.


Evening with Kino-Ikon

One of the screenings of the traditional selection Kino-Ikon+ will focus on the celebrations of the 25th anniversary of Febiofest IFCF. It will involve an opening lecture by a member of the magazine’s editorial board, a discussion with guests from abroad, and also a little surprise for the audience.

MARCH 20, 10:00 PM – LUNA BAR

Industry party: Dirty Animation

DJ Karma je zdarma and VJ TooMuchDada are throwing a multimedia and animation-themed party. The visitors will be able to dance to a pop/film set along with the heroes of Slovak animation.


Case Study: Ismaelʼs Ghosts

A premiere of Desplechin’s latest film Ismael’s Ghost (2017) opened the 70th Cannes Film Festival. It was created in two versions – a shorter one, which is more sentimental in the eyes of the director, and a longer one, which he considers more intellectual. The audience will have an opportunity to view the longer version and participate in a discussion with the director after the screening.