Our Tips for Saturday

The Bratislava film festival enters the weekend at full throttle and cinemagoers can look forward to a truckload of films that are very difficult to choose from; we would like to make your decision-making easier by issuing the following movie tips.


On Saturday, the festival presents two out of three motion pictures that have made it to the final round of the LUX Prize competition. Introduced in 2007 by the European Parliament, the prize’s main purpose is to popularise original European film production, which means eligible to compete are all films produced or co-produced by EU member states and created by European filmmakers. Out of hundreds of annual entries, an international panel of film experts chooses three finalists that are subsequently screened to members of the European Parliament who are the only ones eligible to vote on the winner. The latest winner is Ida, a film by Polish director Paweł Pawlikowski that was also presented at the Bratislava festival last year. This year’s nominees are MediterraneaThe Lesson and Mustang; festival – goers can check out the former two today and the latter one tomorrow.


A feature-length debut by young director Jonas Carpignano, Mediterranea tells a story of two friends from Burkina Faso who venture on a perilous journey across the Mediterranean to pursue their dream of better future in Europe, only to find prejudice, hostility and trouble in the new environment. The picture discusses one of the most pressing issues of our time – migration; the director himself knows a thing or two about the culture clash as he hails from a mixed marriage of African-American mother and Italian father. If you want to learn what he has to say on the subject, the 13.15 show at Kino Lumière (K1) is for you.




The latest film by the Bulgarian directorial tandem of Kristina Grozeva and Petar Valchanov, TheLesson, features a young elementary school teacher from Bulgarian countryside who has just found out about theft in her class and is eager to find the juvenile culprits in order to teach them a lesson about right and wrong. On the home front, though, she falls deeper and deeper into a debt trap set by ever-hungrier loan sharks and is forced to seek the right way out herself. The authors very openly discuss moral dilemmas, depicting how financial problems threaten to undermine human dignity and destroy one’s existence. The film is scheduled for 15.45 at Kino Mladosť.





At 18.00, Kino Nostalgia screens a drama about a man who came 13 Minutes shy of perhaps helping the mankind avoid the greatest massacre in its history. Georg Elser, an ordinary carpenter and occasional musician, planted a time bomb behind the lectern in the Munich beer cellar where Hitler would give a speech on November 8, 1939, but the Führer left the building earlier than planned and thus unharmed. Director Oliver Hirschbiegelskilfully captured the actual end of Hitlerin one of his previous films, The Downfall (2004), which earned him Academy Award nomination for best foreign language film. This time around, he maps out how National Socialism slowly metastasised into the Reich’s most remote hamlets, gradually uncovering the Catholic man’smotives for his desperate plan.


ELSER Bild 56 Artur Nebe (Burghart Klaußner) Georg Elser (Christian Friedel) Heinrich Müller (Johann von Bülow) Foto: Bernd Schuller Tel: 0049-171-1934908



Today at 18.30 in Kino Lumière (K2), the Bratislava film festival will proudly bestow the lifetime artistic achievement award upon EmíliaVášáryová, the unofficial first lady of the Slovak cinema and theatre.The gala evening will be capped by the screening of one of the most popular films in Slovak cinema history, The Copper Tower (1970) by Martin Hollý.




At 21.15, KinoLumière(K4) will present True Štúr, a recently premiered documentary drama about investigating the circumstances of an untimely and unusual death of a prominent Slovak national revivalist ĽudovítŠtúr. In order to appeal to the younger audience, director Michal Balážembroidered his fiction film with elements of documentary, animated and even crime film. It will be completely up to you to judge whether he has succeeded in his mission.




A true film buff should definitely not miss out on thepopular Slippers Night. It kicks off at midnight sharp with Electric Boogaloo: The Wild, Untold Story of Cannon Films (2014), cult director Mark Hartley’s hilarious journey into the realm of B-movies produced by the legendary duo of Golan-Globus. To remember the phenomenon that shook the world of cinema in the 1980s, the night will continue with two of the studio’s classics that will be screened directly from original VHS tapes: at 02.00 you can check out The Delta Force (1986) by recently deceased Menahem Golan and at 04.15 you can enjoy an early morning   nightcap with Joel Silberg’s cult dance movie, Breakin (1984).




If you prefer a different kind of relax after a day full of cinema entertainment, you can stop by in the festival lounge at Gorila.sk Urban Space, which offers distraction, dubbing and dance. At 22.30 you can attend or even take part in an improvised dubbing contest, VHS Karaoke Battle, and at 23:59 you can hit the dance floor as Bulb will present his live music set.

Dear film fans and supporters of the art of cinema, dear festival visitors, colleagues and friends, With great regret, we must report that the Bratislava International Film Festival will not be held in 2019. Believe us, we were the last ones to want to make this decision, but at the same time, we wanted to
be the first to announce it.

Based on votes cast by the visitors, the Bratislava IFF Viewers’ Choice Award went to Wanuri Kahiu’s second feature film Rafiki (2018) about forbidden love in Kenya.

Awards of the 20th Bratislava IFF 2018

“If you’re lucky enough to make living of something you really love, there is a downside – you don’t do it for fun, it’s a job.”


Tomáš Hudák. He studied Film studies (criticism) at the Academy of Performing Arts in Bratislava (VŠMU). He’s a fan of film, music, literature and the art as such. He’s a freelancer, writing film reviews and co-organizing several Slovakian film festivals.

“It’s nice to step out from the bubble of social networks – the binary world of likes/unlikes to be part of the group of totally different people, who are connected only by the skateboards.”


Šimon Šafránek. – director, journalist, DJ – multi-genre artist with the sensation of music and word. He’s a freelancer, writing for the Denník N, Hospodářské noviny, Reflex, Magnus etc.

“Films make us better, braver, more romantic and free”


Bibiana Ondrejková. A popular theatre and voice actress and presenter. The general public knows her as the Slovak voice of Phoebe Buffay from the TV show Friends. Upon seeing her, viewers will associate her with the Slovak TV series The Defenders (2014), Red Widow (2014), Homicide Old Town (2010) or Block of Flats (2008).

“Actors infuse film with emotion and give it a soul”

Daniel Rihák. A fresh graduate of film directing at the Academy of Performing Arts in Bratislava under the leadership of prof. Martin Šulík. A director of (so far) student films and a number of commercials. His graduation film The Trip recently won the Best Director and Best Sound awards at the Áčko Student Film Festival.

“All women have the power to change things”


Ivana Hucíková belongs to the generation of young Slovak filmmakers. She studied at the Academy of Performing Arts in Bratislava, from which she graduated in 2015 with her film Mothers and Daughters. A Bratislava citizen from Orava, living and creating in Slovakia and the USA. So far, she has made several short documentary films: Into My Life (2018), Connie & Corey (2017) and is currently working on the development of several film projects as their director, producer or editor.

“Cinema is a great medium for sharing common European values”


Dominika Jarečná was born in 1999 in Bratislava. She currently studies Theory and History of Arts at the Faculty of Arts, Masaryk University in Brno (Czech Republic). She was a member of the Giornate degli Autori jury at this year’s Venice IFF and is a LUX Prize ambassador for the years 2018 and 2019.

Film festival: “It’s a bit like a vacation full of stories”

Alena Sabuchová is a young Slovak author and screenwriter. For her debut collection of short stories Back rooms, Alena was awarded the Ivan Krasko Prize for the best Slovak-language debut as well as the Tatra banka Foundation Young Artist Award in the category of literature. She writes scripts for television and radio, and is currently working on her second book, which will be published next year.

“These films were among the most awarded debut films at this year’s leading festivals”


Nenad Dukić. Serbian film critic, who has been collaborating with the team of people preparing The Bratislava International Film Festival for 8 years now. This year (the 20th anniversary of the festival’s existence), he is again the compiler of the Fiction Competition and co-compiler of the section Cinema Now.

The popular section Cinema Now brings an overview of the most remarkable films of the season. Its curators, Nenad Dukid and Tomáš Hudák, have assembled the most interesting movies that have stirred the waters of world’s major festivals. For 20 years, the Bratislava IFF has been supplying the Slovak film public with names, which often become stars of the screen.