The goEast programme is divided into ten sections, each with its own profile: Competition, Symposium, East-West Talent Lab,  Open Frame Award, Oppose Othering!, RheinMain Shortfilm Award, wild ninetees, Bioskop, Portrait/Homage (alternately, annually), and Specials.

Each section is curated carefully. Festival correspondents and experts support the programme team. The entries to the competition are nominated by a selection committee. The sections serve to build bridges between Central and Eastern European auteur film and experimental film, from current genre cinema to rediscovered historical films. Documentaries have conquered their rightful place beside the feature films.


Visionary, political or just plain weird: The Competition section brings together the most remarkable ten fiction features and six documentaries of the last two production years and offers a deep look at the cinematic diversity of current Central and Eastern European auteur filmmaking. The 16 productions compete for three prizes, which are awarded by an international jury: the Award for Best Film (10,000 euros), the Award of the City of Wiesbaden for Best Director (7,500 euros) and the Award of the Federal Foreign Office for Cultural Diversity (4,000 euros), while an additional separate three-member jury representing FIPRESCI presents the International Film Critics’ Award. Beyond that, goEast media partner 3sat also offers one select film the opportunity to partner on a broadcast deal.


CONSTRUCTIONS OF THE OTHER. ROMA AND THE CINEMA OF CENTRAL AND EASTERN EUROPE – goEast Film Festival's Symposium is typically devoted to the marginalised in multiple regards. Whether studios on the periphery or women in the director's chair: when it comes to the productive reconstruction of Central and Eastern European cinema history (or histories), it becomes clear how deeply our view of that which we refer to as culture is steeped in the hegemonic discourse of a rigorous West-centrism. This bias causes us to block out the cultural East of Europe and its genuine affi liation with "our" culture. However, it also causes the suppression (and simultaneous production) of the minority elements within it. This year's Symposium will focus on this twofold discrimination – to an extent that is perhaps without precedent: fi lm scholars, members of the cultural sector and fi lmmakers will examine the image and representation politics that have been involved in the creation of a romantic/folkloristic/exotic/racist or otherwise imagined silver screen "gypsy", all while cinematic depictions of the various realities and ways of life of the Roma still remain rare. In opposition to such constant stereotyping, which has become a central subject of antigypsyism research in recent years, a stereotyping akin to criminalisation and animalisation, de-subjectifi cation and demonization, myriad initiatives have arisen, also at an accelerated pace in recent years, that are actively working for the inclusion of image-producing activities of Roma and Romani and fi ghting racism and antigypsyism in transcultural actions. In two panel discussions, one from the perspective of fi lmmakers and a second featuring representatives from institutions that create spaces for Romani self-expression and self-organisation, Roma and non-Roma will share their experiences and talk about possibilities for increasing the visibility of Roma in an affi rmative manner that transcends the perpetuated clichés of "Balkan gypsy" imagery. Following the tried-and-true format of the goEast Symposium, the discussions and lectures – whose historical and ideological subject matter covers periods of socialism and national-socialism to post-socialism – will be accompanied by an extensive fi lm retrospective that will provide a fi rst look at unexplored fi lm-historical territory as well as an alternative look at the familiar: the programme ranges from policies of forced settlement in THE LAST CAMP (Posledniy Tabor, Soviet Union, 1935, directed by Evgeny Shneider, Mikhail Goldblat) to the pedagogical attempts to integrate Roma into socialist society and other encounters, for instance in Peeter Simm's fi nal student fi lm, submitted to Tarkovsy, called TATTOO (Tätoveering, Estonian SSR, 1978), all the way to the revisiting and critical analysis of "gypsy fi lm" classics of Eastern European cinema such as I EVEN MET HAPPY GYPSIES (Skupljači perja, Yugoslavia, 1968, directed by Aleksandar Petrović). Two current fi lms from Romnia provide a fi tting conclusion – one takes a look at the forgotten-repressed Roma genocide, while the other refl ects on how diffi cult it is to establish eye contact self-confi dently. Looking precisely is our aim. Seeing eye to eye.


The EAST-WEST TALENT LAB is dedicated to the transfer of knowledge and creativity and the exchange of project ideas. The program connects young filmmakers and artists from Central and Eastern Europe and Germany. A multitude of workshops and master classes instruct the 30 participants in core competences and provide insight into the film industry. Topics covered in the Lab include fundamental aspects of European co-productions and pitching workshops as well as the Open Frame Award, which this year features a selection of artistically ambitious virtual reality works by young artists and filmmakers from Central and Eastern Europe and Hessen's film and art academies. Vying for the goEast Development Award, endowed with 3,500 euros in prize money, 14 selected projects will pitch their project ideas to a three-member expert jury at the conclusion of the workshop program.
The EAST-WEST TALENT LAB is made possible by the generous support of Kulturfonds Frankfurt RheinMain and the BHF-BANK Foundation.


The annually alternating Homage and Portrait sections offer the festival audience the opportunity to experience the artistic life’s work of an extraordinary filmmaker in a convenient, compact form. A representative programme featuring short and/or long film works and a workshop talk enables festivalgoers to personally encounter filmmakers whose visionary work has had a deep impact on Central and Eastern European cinema. To date these twin sections have honoured Šarūnas Bartas, Benedek Fliegauf, Otar Iosseliani, Miklós Jancsó, Fatmir Koçi, Marlen Khutsiev, Sergej Loznitsa, Kira Muratova, Sergej Paradzhanov, Jan Švankmajer, Jan Svěrák, Małgorzata Szumowska, Juliusz Machulski and, most recently, Márta Mészáros.

Oppose othering!

OPPOSE OTHERING! offers space for discussions in 2019, invites to undreamed-of worlds and poses critical questions on power and human rights issues in the film world. The OPPOSE OTHERING! programme opens up a wide range of opportunities for exchange with two films and subsequent film discussions. Seemingly fixed values, freedoms and beliefs are questioned, perhaps overturned and redefined.


Arthouse cinema from Eastern Europe is increasingly on people’s radar these days, not least of all due to its more recent success with critics and audiences alike at the Berlinale or the Academy Awards. Still, mainstream films and audience favourites from the region very rarely make it into movie theatres in Germany. That’s not the case at goEast though: the Highlights section brings together cinematic treats that delighted audiences in theatres and at festivals: exquisite film fare beyond the realm of auteur cinema.


The extra special section without which no festival would be complete. In the Specials, the School Film Days bring together education and festival atmosphere, new jewels from the festival world share the screen with old treasures from the archives, the local community rubs shoulders with movie stars, events arranged spontaneously in light of current events meet traditional goEast formats. And when the lights finally go out in the theatre lobbies, the festival crowd comes together at night for concerts and parties.


For the second year in a row, experimental 360-degree and virtual reality projects from Central and Eastern Europe compete at goEast for the Open Frame Award. The BHF Bank Foundation is awarding the prize, endowed with 5,000 euros, which is awarded by an international jury. In our exhibitions in Frankfurt and Wiesbaden the projects can be seen before and during the festival.


In November, Germany is due to celebrate the 30th anniversary of the fall of the Berlin Wall. Especially in the capital a multitude of events are planned along the "Route of Revolution". goEast is already taking up the topic of this momentous transition this spring – and directing attention far eastwards beyond Berlin. What did the fall of the Iron Curtain mean for the formerly socialist countries of Europe? How did the collapse of an entire political system and the accompanying establishment of a new order find expression in the films of the early 1990s? The film and talk series "Everything Remains Different? – The Wild 90s", a joint project from goEast and FilmFestival Cottbus, funded by the Federal Foundation for the Study of Communist Dictatorship in East Germany, will examine these questions.


With the RheinMain Short Film Award, goEast has got a new competitive division. Under the motto "Crossing frontiers" films from Eastern Europe with a length of up to 20 minutes, can be found in the short film programme. The prize, endowed with 2,500 euros by the Kulturfonds Frankfurt RheinMain, will be awarded by a jury made up of representatives of cultural associations with a connection to Eastern Europe from the entire Rhine-Main region.
After the festival, the short film programme will go on tour through the region.