Polish films at Sheffield Doc Fest

 

11 June, 1pm
ODEON
Tickets: £7.25 / £5.75 concessions
Festival box office: 0114 275 7727
Book online

Planet Kirsan (PLANETA KIRSAN)
Director:
 Magdalena Pieta

Producer:
 Krzysztof Kopczynski

Poland, 2010, 50 min,


Dictators often impose their passions on their people, but few do so as single-mindedly as Kalmykia’s first and only president, Kirsan Ilyumzhinov. A former teenage chess champion in this small ex-Soviet state (and Europe’s only Buddhist region), Kirsan considers the game to be the root to all society and the key to, uh, everything. He therefore has decreed chess a compulsory subject for every school child and established a chess academy for the brightest players in the land. Magdalena Pieta’s beautifully brooding film takes us into the heart of the creepy Chess City. It springs up gleaming and glossy from Kalmykia’s barren landscape and is full of chess-inspired art works and dutiful children. Amongst them is Alekhan, who spends his days studying with his brother under the withering gaze of a coach, whilst dreaming of moving to Grozny. An elliptical, thought provoking look at an authoritarian state.


08 June, 3pm
Showroom 2
10 June, 10.30am
Library Theatre
Tickets: £7.25 / £5.75 concessions
Festival box office: 0114 275 7727
Book online

Phnom Penh Lullaby
Director: 
Pawel Kloc

Producer:
 Pawel Kloc

Poland, 2011, 98 min,


A misfit in his native Israel, Ilan came to Cambodia hoping to make a fresh start. Eight years later, he finds himself living in a cramped room with girlfriend Saran in the oppressively hot capital Phnom Penh. They communicate together in pidgin English, and try to make ends meet by reading Tarot cards on the seedy streets at night, their baby Jasmine in tow. They can’t afford for their two-year-old daughter Marie to live with them, so they undertake an arduous journey to the countryside. Saran has promised that her family will take care of the girl - as they have done her other children by other men. But all is not as it seems, and Ilan soon finds himself in confusing, frightening circumstances, unable to adequately protect his daughters in a country where young girls are sold into prostitution every day. An intimate observational portrait of life in an all too brutal country.


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