STA, 9 March 2022 - Following last year's on-line edition, the Ljubljana Documentary Film Festival will be organised in hybrid form this year to feature 22 feature-length documentaries and three shorts between 9 and 16 March.
The documentaries, five of which will be vying for the title of the best film dealing with human rights, will be screened at the Cankrajev Dom arts centre, while roughly half of them will also be available for on-demand streaming.
Cankarjev Dom director Uršula Cetinski has said the hybrid solution would help bring viewers back into the cinemas while at the same time providing access to audiences outside of Ljubljana.
The docs running for the Amnesty International Slovenia Award - hand-picked by programme director Simon Popek, who stressed these were not the only films dealing with human rights this year - include The First 54 Years. An Abbreviated Manual for Military Occupation, an exploration of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict by Avi Mograbi.
The Monopoly of Violence, which David Dufresne started shooting during the yellow vests protests in France, Nuclear Family, a take on US aggression of the past century by Traviss and Erin Wilkersonm, Children of the Mist by Ha Le Diem, who sheds light on child marriage in Vietnam, and Reconciliation by Slovenia's Marija Zidar are also in the running.
The latter, a Slovenian, Serbian, Kosovar, Montenegrin co-production, which deals with deep-rooted patriarchy in the Albanian highlights, will open the festival.
Other topics explored in the remaining segments of the festival include workers' struggle in modern capitalism, a theme of Srdjana Kovačević's Factory to the Workers as well as of a panel debate to be organised in cooperation with the Ljubljana-based Institute for Economic Democracy.
Festival visitors will gain insight into teaching methods for refugee children in a small German town via Maria Speth's Mr. Bachmann and His Class, the life of prisoners in Slovenia's Dob prison as explored by Boštjan Korbar and Matjaž Pikalo, and the skiing enthusiasm of Afghan girls as portrayed in another Slovenian co-production, Melting Dreams by Haidy Kancler.
The Myths, Icons, Media section will feature a documentary by Tosca Looby on Australia's sole woman prime minister so far, which Popek argued portrayed the toxicity of the political environment and fitted well with the pre-election period in Slovenia. A retrospective will honour the 100th birthday of documentary film giant Jonas Mekas.
The jury of the festival is comprised of Dutch director Margje de Koning, Slovenian director and journalist Siniša Gačič and Kaja Atanasova of Amnesty International Slovenia, which will also organise a panel of the rights of Palestinians as part of the accompanying programme. A workshop for documentary film makers will be held as well.
See the full programme and get tickets at the official Ljubljana Documentary Film Festival website