Fantastic Friendships and Film Monuments

Festivalblog Day 2


We have the opening behind us and the first day of the festival is coming up. From the COMPETITION, we will be showing the films CHUPACABRA, HOLY FATHER and ONCE UPON A YOUTH as of TODAY.

CHUPACABRA by Grigory Kolomytsev tells the emotional and at the same time fantastical story of 9-year-old Andrey, who, neglected by his parents, escapes into a fantasy world and makes friends with a wolf-like creature who appears to him as the legendary Chupacabra. Difficult family relationships are also addressed in HOLY FATHER by Andrei Dăscălescu: after the documentary filmmaker learns that he will soon be a father, he goes in search of his own father, a man who left him as a ýoung child in order to live in the well known mountain monastery of Athos. While Dăscălescu tries to put aside his fear of what the father role means to him, an intimate and honest portrait reveals itself.

In ONCE UPON A YOUTH by Ivan Ramljak, the director revives the memories of his deceased friend Marko and the youth they spent together in Zagreb in the noughties. Illustrated throughout with the amateur photographs of the deceased, the film presents itself as a dignified memorial, not just to one person, but to an entire generation of post-war Croatian youth. Ivan Ramljak and Grigory Kolomytsev will also be guests in today's Filmtalk program.

// CHUPACABRA On Demand in Germany starting April 21st / 5:00 PM CET

// HOLY FATHER On Demand in Germany starting April 21st / 7:15 PM CET

// ONCE UPON A YOUTH On Demand in Germany starting April 21st / 9:45 PM CET



Once again this year, a jury of five decides on the awarding of the "Golden Lily" at the goEast competition. Saodat Ismailova is the chairperson of the jury this year. The Uzbek's films are shown at several international film festivals. Nevertheless, she feels connected to her homeland and uses it for inspiration. Her origins are also important to Alina Șerban. On her way as the first Roma in theatre and cinema in Romania, she had to overcome several hurdles. Today, her commitment to Roma culture has been awarded several times, most recently in 2019 with the TAJSA - Roma Culture Heritage Prize. In 2017, she was awarded the German Acting Prize for her role in GYPSY QUEEN. The works of documentary filmmaker Thomas Heise have also won several awards. After dropping out of his studies at Babelsberg Film University following a confrontation with the Stasi in 1982, he now teaches at his former university and at the Academy of Fine Arts in Vienna. As a jury member at film events around the world, award ceremonies are well known to Jay Weissberg. Since 2003, the native New Yorker has worked as a film critic for Variety. As a film historian, he deals with aspects of silent film and directs the Pordenone Silent Film Festival. The jury is completed by Volia Chajkouskaya. Born in Belarus, she now lives in Estonia and founded her own production company here, Volia Films. Her documentary THE ROAD MOVIE was screened at more than 80 film festivals in 2016.


12 April 1961, Tyuratam spaceport: on board the Vostok 1 spacecraft, cosmonaut Yuri Gagarin takes an insane step and becomes the first human to fly into space. The Soviet Union thus wins the first stage of the race into space and Gagarin, who is just 1.57m tall, towers above the limits of the possible as a symbol of the human spirit of discovery. But even before the first flight into space, distant planets inspired cinematic art, as in the silent film classic AELITA from 1923, where the socialist revolution is exported not only to the Central Asian Republics, but even to the planet Mars. Here we present you with a daily film from Homage to Gagarin, which you can watch on demand up to and including 28 April.

// ICARUS XB 1 available On Demand in Germany

The year is 2136 and humanity sets off on a journey aboard the gigantic space ship Icarus XB 1 to explore Earth-like planets and search for extra-terrestrial life. Alas, the further the crew ventures from their home planet, the harder their mental health and solidarity as a team are put to the test. Jindřich Polák's science fiction film broke ground for the genre and is captivating in its extraordinary spaceship design, strong ensemble cast and psychological depth. For over 40 years, the US-American cut of the film dominated its reception, before a 2016 digital restoration finally made the original ending available again.


During the festival week, not one but two studio areas will be created in the Museum Wiesbaden While the film guests will meet each other on comfortable armchairs and, of course, at a distance, the up-and-coming talents will get their own arena in the East-West Talent Lab. There, the participants will not only have the opportunity to take part in interesting panels and mentoring sessions, but also social digital gatherings. There will even be a cooking class one evening.