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COTTBUS 2017

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The 27th Cottbus Film Festival kicks off

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- The world's largest festival dedicated to East European cinema brings the border town of Cottbus to life once again

The 27th Cottbus Film Festival kicks off
The Basics of Killing by Jan Cvitkovič

The German city of Cottbus, about thirty kilometres from the Polish border, has hosted a festival dedicated to Eastern European cinema since 1991 (not long after the reunification of Europe), which has since greatly evolved with the addition of the likes of the Connecting Cottbus market. It's been nineteen years since it first became the most important festival for Eastern European cinema in the world, and it still remains a real springboard for some wonderful success stories.

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The 27th edition of Cottbus Film Festival (7-12 November), with Bernd Buder – the event’s artistic director (read last year’s interview here) – behind its program, includes three new competitive sections (an international feature film competition, a short film competition and an under 18s competition to be judged by students from the local region), as well as an amateur competition (Cottbus Filmshow), the Spectrum section, which focuses on the latest trends, the National Hits component, the Russian Journée, the Polish Horizons section, the Cinema section for children, which boasts some classics as well as recent releases, and the local Homeland section (dedicated to cinema from the German-Polish region of Haute Lusace, most notably Sorbian films). This year's Focus centres on the Vietnamese diaspora in Germany, the Czech Republic and Poland. Belarus is the subject of its own dedicated section, and a further promising special program going by the name of Fraternal Kiss is also on the menu.

In international competition, twelve feature films will be competing for the Lubina: the picaresque Out [+see also:
film review
trailer
film focus
interview: György Kristóf
film profile
]
by György Kristóf (Slovakia/Hungary/Czech Republic), unveiled in May in the Un Certain Regard section at Cannes, The Basics of Killing [+see also:
film review
trailer
film focus
interview: Jan Cvitkovič
film profile
]
by Jan Cvitkovič (Slovenia/Serbia), Black Level [+see also:
trailer
film profile
]
by Valentyn Vasyanovych (Ukraine) about a photographer  who doubles up as a "man with no quality," Breaking News [+see also:
film review
trailer
film focus
interview: Iulia Rugină
film profile
]
by Iulia Rugină (Romania), about a reporter who feels responsible for the death of his cameraman in an explosion that occurs during a report, the social drama Daybreak [+see also:
film review
trailer
interview: Gentian Koçi
film profile
]
by Gentian Koçi (Albania/Greece), Head, Two Ears by Vitaly Suslin (Russia), the thriller I'm a Killer [+see also:
film review
trailer
film focus
interview: Maciej Pieprzyca
interview: Renata Czarnkowska-Listos a…
film profile
]
by Maciej Pieprzyca (Poland), about a young police detective who hunts down a serial killer in communist Poland, but who also has his own grey areas, the radical Khibula [+see also:
film review
trailer
film focus
interview: George Ovashvili
film profile
]
by George Ovashvili (Georgia/Germany/France), which stands as a poetic reflection on the mechanisms of power, Omnipresent [+see also:
trailer
film profile
]
by Ilian Djevelekov (Bulgaria), Pomegranate Orchard by Ilgar Najaf (Azerbaijan), The Line [+see also:
film review
trailer
film focus
interview: Andrey Yermak
interview: Peter Bebjak
film profile
]
by Peter Bebjak (Slovakia/Ukraine) an atmospheric thriller on human trafficking at the Slovak-Ukrainian border, and the psychological portrait Wild Roses [+see also:
film review
trailer
film profile
]
by Anna Jadowska (Poland), about a young woman from the Polish provinces who feels inadequate as a mother and wife.

The international jury judging this year's competition includes the Latvian actress Elīna Vaska, the Montenegrin director Danilo Bećković, Ursula von Keitz – professor at Konrad Wolf Film University in Babelsberg and director of the Potsdam Film Museum – the Russian producer Yevgeny Gindilis and the Polish Marcin Pieńkowski, artistic director of the New Horizons International Film Festival, historian, author of numerous books on cinema, and advisor on communication strategies for many Polish productions.

(Translated from French)

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