OPENING NIGHT FILM REVEALED…
Moon Hotel Kabul by Romania’s Anca Damian will open SEEfest with its West Coast premiere on May 1, 2019, at 7 PM at the Writers Guild Theater, 135 S. Doheny Drive in Beverly Hills.
Damian won Best Director Award at the Warsaw International Film Festival and the Mirada International Award at the Madrid Film Festival for this gripping mystery/thriller about Ivan, a charismatic but cynical investigative journalist with a sharp sense for story and no time for compassion. Everything changes after a one night stand in a Kabul hotel room with a translator named Ioana. Not long after their encounter, Ioana is found dead, and Ivan sets out on an investigation unlike any he has undertaken.
With all the best qualities of a sophisticated mystery and stellar lead performances, Moon Hotel Kabul will keep you guessing until the end.
“Anca Damian is the Agnès Varda of Romanian cinema: versatile, innovative, and audacious!” said SEEfest founder & artistic director Vera Mijojlić. “We are honored to open the 2019 South East European Film Festival Los Angeles with her latest daring work.”
This event is supported by the Blue Heron Foundation.
This year’s SEEfest, running May 1-8, will explore the theme of cinematic audacity by drawing attention to filmmakers whose works grapple with complex existential, ethical, and historical questions in innovative, and provocative ways. You can secure your festival pass now on Eventbrite.
Croatia, 2018, 75’
Directors: Dubravka Turić, Filip Mojzes, Filip Peruzović
The thematic framework of the 3-story anthology feature film Deep Cuts is violence in all of its forms: as a destruction of intimacy, family, integrity, trust.
THE NIGHT OF THE BEAR
Romania, 2018, 77’
Director: Paul-Razvan Macovei
Three 17-year olds and would-be friends share emotionally-charged stories of their family life in the course of one summer night. Their often-absurd fights are mediated by the ironical appearance of a giant discarded teddy bear.
In his debut feature director, Macovei employs a unique story technique that will be especially appealing to young adult audiences (16 to 18-year-olds). He breaks the 4th wall to allow his subjects to talk directly to the audience and uses 2D animation featuring bears in lieu of people to illustrate family dynamics.
This screening is supported by the Romanian Cultural Institute, New York.
SUNRISE IN KIMMERIA
West Coast Premiere
Cyprus, 2018, 99’
Director: Simon Farmakas
A young villager gets caught in a tragicomic tug-o’-war, when a strange sphere, tracked by a foreign intelligence agency, crash-lands into his potato field.
Avoiding the stereotypical ethnographic comedies of the genre, the storyline intertwines the lives of the local villagers with the intelligence agents, combining the peasant-like naivety with international conspiracies and intrigues, conveying similarities that the latter has with the run-of-the-mill village rivalries and their struggle for authority and ownership.
Screening in the Sci-Fi program — stay tuned for more program announcements.
North American Premiere
Bulgaria, 2018, 96’
Director: Nadejda Koseva
Irina is a part-time waitress in a small Bulgarian town. On the same day, she gets fired her husband gets into a serious accident, plunging them even deeper into poverty. To make ends meet, she becomes a surrogate mother.
With her emotions oscillating between disappointing family circumstances and new pregnancy, Irina confronts them with fierce determination and in her own unsentimental way discovers what it means to love and to forgive.
Winner of Best First Film, Best Actress and Union of Bulgarian Filmmakers award at the Golden Rose festival in Bulgaria, Special Jury Award for actress Martina Apostolova and Ecumenical Jury Award at Warsaw IFF, Best Feature Film Award at Tirana FF, Best First Feature Film Award & Best Actress Award at Cottbus FF, and Special mention to the actress Martina Apostolova at Tbilisi IFF.
This screening is supported by Calypso Media.
AUDACIOUS STORYTELLERS: SEEfest CULTURAL AND LITERARY SALON
A historian, a literary critic, an actress, and an author come together for an evening of scintillating cultural exchange. These dynamic panelists draw on their knowledge, experience, and anecdotes to contemplate the theme of audacity in all of its forms.
The SEEFest Cultural and Literary Salon will explore audacity in the literature, history, and cinema of South East Europe, where geopolitical borders act as audacious protagonists in sociocultural affairs.
Presented with the support of the City of West Hollywood’s Arts Division. Click here for details and to RSVP.
SEEfest program and activities are supported, in part, by the California Arts Council, a state agency; Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors through the Los Angeles County Arts Commission; and presented with the support of the City of West Hollywood’s Arts Division. Special thanks to ELMA for continued support of our programs.