Jihlava IDFF Celebrates Its 18th Birthday in a Documentary Factory!
For the 18th time, the centre of Czech Republic turns into a festival centre of Central Europe; Jihlava International Documentary Film Festival is coming! Enjoy the great film celebration held in the spirit of factory halls this year; and, for the first time in the festival’s history, watch a special part of the main festival film programme only virtually; in the documentary factory at DAFilms.com from Monday, October 20 to Tuesday, October 28 for free!
Heat, noise, machines and a relentless pace; such is the world of factories. Heat in the ticket line, noise in the halls after film screenings and the relentless pace of screening machines; such is the world of film festivals. Why has one of the leading Central European festivals decided to shroud its 18th edition in the smoke of smokestacks? “To us, the factory is a multi-layered metaphor of today’s world as well as a sign showing how our society has changed in the past 120 years,” says festival director Marek Hovorka about the choice of the unconventional theme. “As a result of the economic crisis and globalization, many factories throughout the world have been closed, while other factory halls are built on greenfield sites, often in their close vicinity. Such a perspective can be more telling of the present day than the perception of the world through national borders,” he adds.
Besides offering a unique film experience, the festival also promises encounters with interesting international guests. Jihlava will host holder of the Golden Leopard from Locarno IFF Albert Serra, Yugoslav Black Wave legend Želimir Žilnik and French documentary star Nicolas Philibert. The imaginary top of the film programme will be dedicated to the extensive retrospective of father of Filipino documentary Kidlat Tahimik who will personally attend the festival. Those of you who are not going to the Jihlava film factory personally can get a unique access to the film factory halls via DAFilms.com and five films from the festival section “The Factory in Contemporary Documentary”!
The Romanian documentary PATUL E STRICAT follows the landscape of the old continent corrugated by industrialization in a story of an uncertain future which is so telling of contemporary society. The film which has shined at the prestigious IDFA gets to the very core of the phenomenon of abandoned factory halls while exposing what seems to be an innocent child’s play in the ruins of an industrial building. The visually attractive essay by artist Lee Anne Schmitt CALIFORNIA COMPANY TOWN, too, reveals the moonscape of abandoned factories, this time in the west of the United States. The nostalgia and loss of illusions brought about by the interruption of industrial production are wrapped in the powerful aesthetics of 16mm camera images.
An interest in individual human stories dominates the other two presented films POSLEDNIY LIMUSIN and DOWNEAST. While the rhythm of the machines of one of Russia’s oldest car plants measures the monotonous working hours of local workers, the six protagonists of the documentary POSLEDNIY LIMUSIN get a unique task that cannot be accomplished by an industrial machine; to produce the last three pieces of the iconic Soviet vehicle. Another unique task is to be carried out by the protagonist of DOWNEAST, American entrepreneur Antonio Bussone, who has decided to return traditional industry to the rural landscape of Maine at the time of the economic crisis. However, his vision is opposed both by local citizens and by the law. Who is against whom? And is not modern society against itself? This is how the factory theme is wrapped up in the philosophical documentary exploration ZÁVOD KE DNU by Czech director Vít Janeček.
Put on your hard hats; a unique experience is rolling your way! For the 18th time, the Jihlava IDFF factory delivers original documentary goods to its customers!
Films for the event
California Company Town (Orig.) / 2008 / United States / 76 min
California Company Town, the much-anticipated essay film by Lee Anne Schmitt, casts a probing, clear-eyed gaze at the landscape of California towns abandoned by the industries that created them—onetime boom-towns now haunted by the twilight of the American promise...
Downeast (Orig.) / 2012 / United States / 80 min
The slogan on the the 'Welcome to Maine' sign leading into Gouldsboro reads "Open for Business," but the recent closure of the sardine canning factory has brought this small coastal town to a total standstill. Its laid-off residents—mostly 70-year-olds—just want to get back to work, so when Italian immigrant Antonio Bussone arrives from Boston aiming to open a new lobster processing plant, most of the local labor welcomes him with open arms...