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- 19.1.2015 11:14 -

Victor Kossakovsky: Online Retrospective, Premiere & Master class


Russian film legend Victor Kossakovsky comes to Prague to introduce his latest film, film master class and online retrospective

One of the most remarkable contemporary world filmmakers and star of Russian cinema Victor Kossakovsky comes to the Czech Republic to personally introduce the distribution premiere of his latest acclaimed film Long Live the Antipodes!. The breathtaking visual journey around the world, which opened the Venice IFF and received the prestigious nomination for the European “film Oscar”; the Prix Arte, will be screened on January 23 at Prague’s Světozor Cinema, which will also present the director’s master class open to the general public on the very same day. Kossakovsky’s film, which will be later screened at other Czech cinemas such as Bio Central in Hradec Králové and Minikino Ostrava, will also be included in the director’s first online retrospective. From January 19 to February 1, film viewers across the world will be able to watch Kossakovsky’s extraordinary films for free. “It is a completely unique event whose preparation started more than six years ago. For a long time, the director was reluctant to present his films outside traditional screening venues. We appreciate that he made an exception in our case in the end,” says Diana Tabakov of the DAFilms.com portal about the circumstances of the online release, adding: “We are even happier about it since Kossakovsky’s films have ranked among completely exceptional film works since the 1990s. The director really is a living legend.”

Distribution Premiere of “Long Live the Antipodes!”

“Don’t film if you can live without filming.” With these words, the online portal DAFilms.com introduces the unique film work by Victor Kossakovsky, holder of film awards from the festivals in Karlovy Vary, Leipzig and Amsterdam and an honorary award from Jihlava IDFF, which will be introduced by the portal in the second half of January in Czech cinemas and online, in the presence of the filmmaker. Renowned primarily for his ability to tell seemingly ordinary human stories in an engaging way as well as for assuming the role of the director, cameraman, editor and screenwriter, the filmmaker comes to Prague to introduce his latest film Long Live the Antipodes!

“It would be hard to choose the film’s most exotic and awe-inspiring location, but Big Island, Hawaii with its fields of burning black lava is certainly a candidate, while no less surprising is its antipode of Kubu, Botswana where a woman calmly observes herds of elephants, giraffes and lions from her village kiosk.” (The Hollywood Reporter)

The film that can be labelled as an original film travelogue captures a visually impressive journey around the world to eight antipodes of the Earth. These are represented by the following couples in the film: China – Argentina, Chile – Russia, Hawaii – Botswana, New Zealand – Spain. The overpopulated Shanghai finds its antipode in an unpeopled plateau in Argentina while a volcano swallowing burning lava in Hawaii is seconded by the calm life in a village in Botswana. While watching these breathtaking images, we gradually find out that there may be unexpected, humorous and even magic links between these apparently remote places.

Long Live the Antipodes! was screened at more than 60 international film festivals, including leading European film festivals such as IDFA, Venice IFF, DOK Leipzig and Sheffield Doc/Fest. In North America, the film was introduced for instance at Hot Docs, San Francisco IFF and at the prestigious MoMA. The documentary won at Saint Petersburg IFF 2011, was nominated for the main European film award Prix Arte in the best documentary category in the same year and became the opening film of the Venice International Film Festival.

The Czech distribution premiere will be held on Friday, January 23 at 8:30 p.m. at the big screening hall of Světozor Cinema. Along with representatives of the DAFilms.com portal, it will be personally introduced by the director who will have an informal discussion with the viewers after the screening.

Unique World Online Retrospective

Besides presenting the director’s latest film Long Live the Antipodes!, the DAFilms.com portal also presents the first world online retrospective which will offer 6 previous films by the filmmaker. These will include the ground-breaking documentary The Belovs which took Victor Kossakovsky to the top of world documentary in 1992 which he never left. On the contrary, the director proved his claim to rank with the most talented filmmakers five years later with his film Wednesday 19. 07. 1961 which brought him an award at the film festivals in Karlovy Vary and Edinburgh.

The period of the 1990s is also represented in the retrospective by Pavel and Lyalya (a Jerusalem Romance) which again did not go unawarded, receiving awards at the prestigious festivals IDFA and DOK Leipzig, as well as one of the filmmaker’s earliest films Losev made in 1989. The director’s film work made after 2000 is represented by the humorous film Tishe! filmed from the window of the filmmaker’s bedroom in Saint Petersburg, Russia. In the course of 2013, he observed random events on the street framed by the preparations for the celebration of the 300th anniversary of the city.

The online retrospective will be available to Czech as well as international viewers from Monday, January 19 to Sunday, February 1 for free.

Moreover, viewers from the Czech Republic will have a unique chance to watch Long Live the Antipodes! as it enters Czech theatrical distribution from the day of the theatrical premiere, i.e. from Friday, January 23 to the end of the retrospective on Sunday, February 1 for free. All of the director’s films are available at www.dafilms.com.

Film Master Class of Victor Kossakovsky

Victor Kossakovsky will also introduce himself in the role of a lecturer during his Czech visit. On Friday, January 23 at 6 pm, he will present his film master class to the general public at the small screening hall of Světozor Cinema. He will introduce his film work, selecting important moments he will comment on, and explain how he approaches the film documentary not only from the position of a director but also from the perspective of a screenwriter, cameraman and editor. He will also discuss the specific world of film festivals where his films are highly appreciated and where he is a frequent and welcome guest.

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