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10 Years of Discovering the Best Documentaries for You

Films that have charmed DOK Leipzig. Let them charm you, too!


The great Doc Alliance festival fall is in full swing! The third stop of the festival journey belongs to one of Europe‘s oldest film feasts; the German DOK Leipzig. For a whole week from October 27 to November 2, the screens of Leipzig cinemas will light up for the 57th time, welcoming over 41 world film premieres. Save these days for your own home online festival with a unique programme; six international documentaries which charmed the festival jurors in 2013!

A big welcome and a big goodbye; that is the essence of the 57th edition of the German DOK Leipzig festival. After ten successful years, Claas Danielsen leaves the director’s chair. You can read an interview with the director parting with his team here. The reins will be taken over by experienced film expert and manager Leena Pasanen from Finland. What programme will wrap up Claas Danielsen’s festival career? The cinema of former Yugoslavia will be explored; a special section The State Owned Eye will introduce films produced by the DEFA state film studio; the programme will further include 5 competition sections, an extensive international programme as well as films with a political focus dealing with the explosive regions of Ukraine and Syria.

The six free films which attracted the attention of the DOK Leipzig festival jury last year offer a rich variety of documentary genres and film forms. A significant part of the festival dealing with animated film is represented by the film CASA by young French director Daniela de Felice. By means of the film, the director embarks on a family film therapy reacting to the death of her father. NORMALIZATION: KAUZA CERVANOVÁ by Slovak director Robert Kirchhoff is an almost detective search; in the course of eight years, the documentarist has followed a case of an abduction, rape and murder of a young woman from over 40 years ago, with seven young men sentenced for the crime on the basis of political intrigues of the Czechoslovak communist regime. Their release after the democratic revolution of 1989 was disrupted by the shocking verdict from 2004, sending the men back to prison. The director searches for the motives of the judicial system, its dark places as well as the possibilities of remedy, after the lie detector proves the men to tell the truth as they swear their innocence.

MAMA and SILENCE RADIO take on a lyrical note. While the director of the Russian film MAMA points her camera at the face of her mother, whom she has been taking care of in the last years of her life, with tenderness and endless patience, SILENCE RADIO by talented director Valéry Rosier follows several stories of ageing men and women who relate to the vanished world of their youth solely by means of a traditional music radio station. To them, it becomes a crucial communication channel as well as a bridge to the past.

The last two films are not afraid to bring up the international political situation. The Israeli film SUPER ZHENSHCHINY chooses a group of Russian immigrants for protagonists; looking for a new start in their life in the Jewish state, they are willing to sacrifice a lot. A sacrifice for the sake of a better future is also familiar to the protagonists of the German documentary ART WAR; young graffiti artists. The civil revolution in Egypt has brought about the fall of president Mubarak, and it was the images in the streets that enabled the new democratic values to spread, thus becoming an imaginary visual chapter of the transformation known as the Arab Spring.

Start the big documentary feast in the company of the DOK Leipzig festival online, with a free ticket to the front row, from Monday, October 27 to Sunday, November 2!

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Films for the event



Mama (Orig.) / 2013 / Russia / 28 min

Lidiya Sheynina points her calm and distant camera at her mother’s body and face, often angled from below. Over the years, the mother has evolved the physiognomy of a turtle plodding along comfortably. Life is hard, the flat is cramped, but she makes the best of it – on and on...




Kauza Cervanová (Orig.) / 2013 / Czech Republic, Slovakia / 100 min

Only a moment ago, 19-year-old medical student Ludmilla Cervanova had smiled into the camera. Her body was found in a river in a small Slovak town in 1976. Seven men were responsible for the horrifying rape and death of the girl. Fortunately, the perpetrators were apprehended and condemned. But though Ludmilla was drowned alive, oddly enough no signs of violence could be found on the body...



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