This year, the DRAGON OF DRAGONS goes to the eminent Estonian animated film-maker Priit Pärn. At the last edition, the GOLDEN DRAGON for the best short film director went to Jerzy Kucia for the film "Fugue For Cello, Trumpet and Landscape", while the animated film "Summer 2014" by Wojciech Sobczyk was nominated for the European Film Award.
What can we expect at the 55th edition of the festival? Which titles and directors are worth seeing, tells us Robert Sowa, author of animated films and curator of animated film section at Krakow Film Festival.
Interview with Robert Sowa
What’s new in animated film at Krakow Film Festival?
Let’s start from the large number of animated film submissions, which is still growing. This year, together with Zbigniew Czapla, we had to choose from among over 350 films. This is thanks to a very good standing and renown of Krakow Film Festival, about which the organisers are quite pleased. All films submitted this year are definitely diverse and of a very high quality. I have also noticed that the medium-length films tend to get longer in recent years. The films which last several minutes, not a couple of minutes, appear more often. In this year’s international competition, over a half of the films are of this length. Of course, it is not the rule, and there are also very short films on this list. For instance, Spanish animated film "Zepo" by César Díaz Meléndez, only 2 minutes long. It is enough to achieve a great final result.
Could you also reveal to us a couple of interesting, recommendable films, which we cannot miss at this year’s edition of the festival?
Definitely "Zepo", which I have just mentioned. It a great short form, actually a film miniature, which has a very powerful message. It turns out that one can tell incredibly much about violence, or even about totalitarianism, in two minutes.
Can we consider Priit Pärn the mentor of these people? For instance, is his visual technique visible in their films?
No, the visual technique is totally different, which I believe to be good, but the films are made also by the authors who made their débuts under his tutelage, so it is a pleasant and meaningful coincidence.
Which cinema also has a strong representation?
In this edition, Hungary, but also our neighbours from Slovakia, as well as Russia, Greece and South Korea. It worth emphasising that art house animated films from this region, particularly from South Korea and China, are better and better developed. It is caused by, among others, the fact that the system of artistic education has been significantly strengthened there. They invite well-known film-makers from Europe, who considerably assist in this process. This is why the films made there are more and more frequently quite artistically expressive, with a strong art house character. The animated films by these authors do not look for entertainment, but delve into its own condition or into social context. It is a very interesting phenomenon, relatively fresh on the "map" of animated film. In the festival competition, we will see the film "Each other" by Lee Kyutae. Aptly, the film seems to be about growing up and becoming an adult…
You have already mentioned a couple of films, whose productions we will also see?
We have some strong names, among others, the new film by Ülo Pikkov "Tick Tack." Interesting, philosophical film made using the pixilation method, in which objects are animated, as well as the main protagonist, who is a real actor. Another name is Veronika Obertová. The author of the perfect film "Viliam." This year, the Slovakian will show us her new film, "Nina", about the traumas of childhood. Very expressive, wonderfully narrated, using the method of cut-out in an interesting way, so perfect that it is a feast for the eyes. Russia will be represented by two names: Vasil Bedoshvili with his film "The Hen" – it is a very funny, splendidly animated film, which half-jokingly deals with the subject of pro-family policy. The second author is Konstantin Bronzit, who won the Silver Dragon for his film "At the Ends of the Earth" but also made the festival audience in Kijów cinema cry with laughter and give peals of ovation. This year, we have his new film "We can’t live without cosmos" revealing a hilarious story of a friendship between two cosmonauts! Cosmic mirages and men’s feelings…
The interview with Robert Sowa was conducted by Marta Pawlik.
The list of animated films qualified to the short competition: