From the 22nd to 30th January, the 8th Budapest International Documentary Film Festival (BIDF), the only international competition festival in Hungary for the world’s most prestigious documentaries without thematic or other restrictions, will be held with nearly 50 films and 200 screenings.
In 2022, the films will be screened not only in Budapest but in 10 cities across the country. In Debrecen, a selection of 6 films from the full programme will be screened at Cinema City Debrecen Plaza between 22nd-23rd January.
This year’s slogan for this year’s festival is BRAVE FILMS. This year, each section of BIDF will feature brave women, children, resisters, dreamers, and pathfinders, and will showcase the world’s latest internationally successful feature-length creative documentaries.
The Budapest International Documentary Film Festival Debrecen programme:
Children of the Mist
Director: HÀ Lệ Diễm (Vietnam, 2021, ’90)
SCREENING: 22 January (Saturday) 15:30
12-year-old Di lives in the fog-shrouded mountains of northern Vietnam. A member of the Hmong ethnic minority, who marry their daughters at a very young age, it is no surprise that the women and girls talk unashamedly about sex and marriage. Di’s 34-year-old mother is now a grandmother, completely illiterate and barely speaks Vietnamese. But the little girl goes to school, where she learns a different set of values. Teachers encourage them to continue their education as long as possible, even though most parents would rather their children work in the fields. As Di enters adolescence, her mother tries in her own way to protect her from child marriage: On Lunar New Year’s Day, Di goes to a street fair, but her mother urges her to stay off the streets on the most dangerous day of the year if she is not to fall victim to ‘traditional’ kidnapping. But when Di’s parents return home at night, the house is empty and silent. Di has disappeared.
Director: Jonas Poher Rasmussen (Denmark, France, Sweden, Norway, 2021, ’86)
SCREENING: 22 January (Saturday) 17.45
Amin spends part of his childhood in Afghanistan in the 1980s, listening to Western music, his sisters and his mother don’t even have to wear headscarves. When the Soviets withdraw, however, his father is traced. He and his brothers have to flee the civil war. The family finds refuge in Moscow, from where they try to reach Sweden, but the smugglers demand a high price for their freedom. Amin takes the family’s decision to go it alone, the most expensive and safest way. But no one expects that the boy’s flight ticket will be to Denmark instead of Sweden and that Amin will have to lie to get refugee status. Amin, now 36, is an accomplished academic and about to marry his boyfriend. But the secret she has kept buried inside for more than 20 years could ruin her career and her personal life.
Inside the Red Brick Wall
Director: Hong Kong Documentary Filmmakers (Hong Kong, 2020, ’88)
SCREENING: 22 January (Saturday) 20:00
In 2019, a huge wave of protests swept Hong Kong over proposed amendments to the Extradition Act. Students at the University of Technology are fighting for freedom and democracy. The police’s method of negotiation is aggressive and unpredictable, with politically-motivated songs interspersed with threats and bargains shouted over megaphones. The students defend themselves against brutal police interventions with colourful umbrellas but are powerless against tear gas, beatings, and rubber bullets. The brave fight against the authorities turns into a game of cat and mouse when the police blockade the university building, turning the students’ stronghold into their prison. As insecurity grows, fear and exhaustion prevail among the young people. Should they stay inside or face the gunmen outside?
Director: Tomislav Jelinčić (Croatia, Italy, 2020, ’76)
Sunday, 23rd January, 11:00 a.m.
Mr. Vokič has been living with Malena for 26 years. They travel the countryside together by car, spend long, dark winter afternoons in their warm room, and in the spring they stack the nest together on the roof of the garage. Malena is a stork with broken wings, adopted by Mr. Vokič. Maléna’s faithful mate, Klepetan, returns to her every year, almost to the day, despite her injury. The journey from Africa is long and dangerous. Nevertheless, days before Klepetan’s arrival, Maléna is restless, not eating, constantly looking at the eastern sky. But not only she, but also Mr. Vokič, TV crews, and the town’s elders are anxiously awaiting Klepetan’s arrival. The extraordinary stork has an international fan base, from America to Australia, with statues and a play written about him. But how long can this relationship, which has given hope and faith to many, last?
Director: Andrea Arnold (United Kingdom | 2021 ’94)
Screening: 23rd January (Sunday) 4:00 p.m.
Take cows for example! Or more precisely: let’s try to get closer to them. See their beauty and the challenges of their lives at the same time – we would say that if they were human. Not in a romantic way, but in a real way. Specifically, through the life of a large-scale dairy cow, who is doing us, humans, a real service. As we look at Luma, our heroine, the cow, the whole world is reflected in her. Our world, to be precise.
Raise the Bar
Director: Gudjon Ragnarsson (Iceland, Finland, 2020, ’70)
SCREENING: 23rd January (Sunday) 6:15 p.m.
In 2015, an unconventional Icelandic coach, Brynjar Karl Sigurðsson, decides to start a basketball team and teaches his youngest children to play basketball not in the usual way, but in his own controversial way. He not only instills in the eight-year-old girls a love of the sport, discipline, technical knowledge, and team spirit but also prepares them psychologically for competitive situations. Under her guidance, the team quickly becomes the best in its age group, competing in the same league as older girls’ teams. Sigurðsson is turning the girls into real athletes who can stand up for themselves, not only on the pitch but in real life as well. But the coach wants to raise the bar even higher. The only way to improve is for the girls to compete against all-boys teams. However, the island nation’s basketball federation, famous for its women’s equality, bans natural boys’ and girls’ matches abroad without any meaningful dialogue.
The awards at the 8th Budapest International Documentary Film Festival will be decided by a prestigious jury of international and national experts and filmmakers, including Róbert Alföldi, Eszter Csákányi, Roland Vranik, and many more.