The 14th edition of the Ostrava Kamera Oko (OKO) International Film Festival, subtitled Sous les pavés, la plage!, starts on 28th September and runs until 2nd October 2022. It will offer more than thirty short and feature films over five days.
In the main competition section, the festival will present films from world festivals: Angels in America, Where's the street? and Without Before and Without After, Who Is Stopping Us, Tommy Guns, Song for the Buried City, and an interview with Volodymyr Zelensky. Other highlights include a screening of the controversial film De Humani Corporis Fabrica, presenting a different view of humanity, and a special screening of Libertad in the garden of the Hogo Fogo bistro. OKO will show the debuts Blood Kin, Borders of Love, Somewhere over the Chemtrails, and Preparations for film T, which will be introduced by their cinematographers and other filmmakers. And moreover, a Game of Thrones cinematographer will also make an appearance!
We are pleased to announce that American cinematographer Catherine Goldschmidt has accepted the invitation to the festival. During her masterclass, Goldschmidt, who is, according to the American Cinematographer Magazine, a rising cinematography star, will discuss the Illuminatrix cinematography platform she co-founded. She will also enlighten the audience with the behind-the-scenes collaborations on series such as Dummy, Doctor Who, and the prequel to the popular Game of Thrones (House of the Dragon). Catherine will also participate in a debate on women cinematographers, moderated by festival dramaturge Louise H. Johansen. The Russian director Vadim Kostrov, who received a special mention at last year's Jihlava IDFF, will also present his work. Among the domestic filmmakers, there will be director Milan Klepikov, cinematographers Vojtěch Hönig, Matěj Piňos, Kryštof Melka, Jiří Holba, Lukáš Kokeš, Yvon Teysslerová, and journalist Linda Bartošová.
Following the subtitle of this year's edition, OKO will present Radim Špaček's film of the same name as the festival, dedicated to the role of public television Under the Paving Stones, the Beach (2013). The topic of the follow-up debate moderated by Barbora Loudová (Deník N) will ponder the meaning and importance of public media and war coverage from the perspective of cinematographers. For example, the debate will be attended by cinematographer Vojtěch Hönig, who reported on the war in Ukraine.
The Official Selection of this year focuses on cinematographic art and contemporary visuality. It highlights the ongoing conflict and what seems to have been forgotten, thus highlighting life at the center of events and its clear margins. “Variety in the modern expression of cinematographic approaches and an effort to be conscious of context are, for me, the most important things that can give the Official Selection its character every year and encourage local filmmakers to be brave in both," says Jakub Felcman, the Official Selection Programmer.
Two films lead the Official Selection. Interviews with Volodymyr Zelensky and Tommy Guns (Nação Valente, dir. Carlos Conceição, 2022), a competition entry from the Locarno IFF, is a means of seeing the world through the eyes of an occupier sent to a territory that is not their home, to defend it (from its inhabitants), and to protect it as their home. Angels in America (Salle Escande, dir. Arnaud Desplechin, 2021) is an exceptionally well-executed television adaptation of the play. Who is Stopping Us (Quién lo impide, dir. Jonás Trueba, 2021) is a time-lapse documentary colossus and a fragile portrait of the young generation. The Song for the Buried City (Chant pour la ville enfouie, dir. Nicolas
Koltz, Elisabeth Perceval, 2022) is a remembrance of a demolished refugee camp that, in today's perspective, appears fully buried under multiple layers of new events. And the Portuguese film Where is the Street? or Without Before and Without After (Onde Fica Esta Rua, dir. João Rui Guerra da Mata, João Pedro Rodrigues, 2022), an out-of-competition film from the Locarno IFF, follows in the footsteps of Lisbon's long-gone past and paints an intimate portrait of its homeland.
The jury deciding the winning film will be composed of cinematographers Edita Kainrath, Nelisa Alcalde, and Harsimran Ananda.
The Short Film Competition will also feature five promising young cinematographers from the Czech Republic. "We selected the filmmakers and their films after nomination from the winners of previous OKO editions. There will be four representatives from FAMU (Tomáš Uhlík, Ludvík Otevřel, Kristina Kůlová, Kryštof Čížek) and one (Lukáš Bistřický) who has passed the National Film and Television School in London," says Zuzana Černá, Coordinator of the Short Film Competition. The remote jury will be composed of cinematographers Jakob Ihre, Federico Cesca, and Paul Guilhaume.
Again, this year, the OKO festival addressed personalities from across disciplines to convey to the audience the diversity with which the camera can be viewed.
Martin Horyna, programmer of the Karlovy Vary festival, will present the work of Italian audiovisual artist Yuri Ancarni, whose work will be discussed with director and cinematographer Lukáš Kokeš. Together they will present Atlantide (2021), Whipping Zombie (2017), and The Challenge (2016), showing where the boundaries of fiction and documentary intersect.
Tomáš Slunský from the Gin&Platonic collective will welcome Russian director Vadim Kostrov. In Ostrava, he will personally present his autobiographical films Fall (2022), Summer (2021), and Winter (2021). Festival guests can look forward to a masterclass with Kostrov revealing his journey to filmmaking and the risks of making films in Russia.
Cinematographer Yvon Teysslerová will present the film The Valley of the Bees (1967) by director František Vláčil, whose poetic approach influenced her work.
Edith Jeřábková and Jakub Adamec will open an exhibition in the Plato Gallery, conceived as a sound art intervention. They will use a model of the new Ostrava concert hall by architect Steven Holl and offer the opportunity to test the acoustic properties of the new concert architecture.
Journalist and music dramaturg Pavel Klusák will host the Breakfast: Weir of Sounds, during which experimental musicians Ivan Palacký, Petr Vrba, and Martin Nábělek will perform, Czechoslovak educational films about food and diet will be screened, and themed breakfast will be served during the audiovisual event.
On Saturday, the festival will culminate with an audiovisual evening directed by the Genot Centre and Audio Video Bass collectives at the Plato Gallery. In the opening part, Ondřej Lasák from Genot Centre will present three names resonating on the alternative scene. He offers his selection as contemporary global folk that doesn't wallow in formal nostalgia.
Nina Pixel will show what urban folk is and how it works in the online environment, reminding us of the Vinyl Award-winning compilation Liptov. During the ritual burial of conservative narratives, Adrián Kriška will accompany her with a video projection. Organ Tapes will play an autotune with guitar, accompanied by a universal urban intimacy captured on an iPhone. Martyyna will offer the decomposition of rigid structures through the emotionality of the human voice.
The night’s second part with Audio Video Bass will be "Let's Dance on the Ruins – Future is Female.” The all-female line-up includes names like Brigitte Noir, Nill Garçon, and Teresi.