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VILNIUS 2021

The virtual Vilnius IFF invites the audience to hotels

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- The 26th edition of the leading Lithuanian event is aiming to introduce new European voices to the local audience and get viewers off their sofas

The virtual Vilnius IFF invites the audience to hotels
People We Know Are Confused by Tomas Smulkis

The 26th edition of the Vilnius International Film Festival “Kino Pavasaris” will be running entirely virtually from 18 March-5 April, bringing the Lithuanian audience a selection of 104 feature films and 44 shorts across various sections. It also invites viewers to answer the question “To Act or/and To Be?” in order to “carefully look inwards, and observe global developments and their effect on us as individuals, as a society and as living organisms”, as artistic director Mantė Valiūnaitė explains. The festival will open with the Golden Bear winner There Is No Evil [+see also:
film review
trailer
film profile
]
by Mohammad Rasoulof.

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Furthermore, in partnership with the hotel industry, the festival is launching the “Staycation with Kino Pavasaris” experience. Viewers will be able to transport their digital screenings from their sofas to six selected hotels in Vilnius. By checking in for an overnight stay, they can enjoy unlimited access to the festival films and even the red carpet. Algirdas Ramaška, CEO of the Vilnius International Film Festival, explains: “When you cannot go outside and the media is blowing up with negativity, it is hard to stay sane. We help people to redirect their attention to more positive thoughts.”

In the European Debut Competition, ten films will be available for streaming, and the section will be opened by the out-of-competition title Gagarin [+see also:
film review
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interview: Fanny Liatard and Jérémy Tr…
film profile
]
by Fanny Liatard and Jérémy Trouilh (France). The section includes the national premiere of People We Know Are Confused [+see also:
trailer
film profile
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by Lithuanian filmmaker Tomas Smulkis, which follows the experiences of people living in Vilnius, and the rest of the films in this strand are Bad Roads [+see also:
film review
trailer
interview: Natalya Vorozhbit
film profile
]
by Natalya Vorozhbit (Ukraine), Feast [+see also:
trailer
interview: Tim Leyendekker
film profile
]
by Tim Leyendekker (Netherlands), Gritt [+see also:
film review
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interview: Itonje Søimer Guttormsen
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by Itonje Søimer Guttormsen (Norway), Looking for Venera [+see also:
film review
trailer
interview: Norika Sefa
film profile
]
by Norika Sefa (Kosovo), Mighty Flash [+see also:
film review
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interview: Ainhoa Rodríguez
film profile
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by Ainhoa Rodríguez (Spain), Moon, 66 Questions [+see also:
film review
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interview: Jacqueline Lentzou
film profile
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by Jacqueline Lentzou (Greece/France), Natural Light [+see also:
film review
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interview: Dénes Nagy
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by Dénes Nagy (Latvia/Germany/Hungary/France), Rascal [+see also:
film review
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interview: Peter Dourountzis
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by Peter Dourountzis (France) and Why Not You [+see also:
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by Evi Romen (Austria/Belgium). The jury of this section includes Venice Days artistic director Gaia Furrer, Canadian filmmaker Denis Côté, MUBI VP of content Daniel Kasman, Lithuanian producer and M-films founder Marija Razgutė, and Hungarian filmmaker Lili Horvát.

In addition, 33 titles have been selected for the Short Competition, with six of them helmed by Lithuanian filmmakers. The jury of this section comprises film critic and Cannes Critics’ Week programmer Nanako Tsukidate, director and cinematographer Camille Degeye, and filmmaker Ignas Meilūnas.

Some of the standout movies selected in other sections of the Vilnius IFF are Radu Jude’s provocative satire Bad Luck Banging or Loony Porn [+see also:
film review
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interview: Radu Jude
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, freshly awarded the Golden Bear in Berlin, Denis Côté’s first comedy Social Hygiene and Michel Franco’s dystopian New Order [+see also:
film review
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film profile
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. The festival will close with Apples [+see also:
film review
trailer
interview: Christos Nikou
film profile
]
by first-time Greek filmmaker Christos Nikou.

The whole festival will run on Vinlius IFF’s own virtual cinema platform, which has already been launched, aiming to offer comparable levels of quality and a similar experience to the biggest virtual festivals around the world.

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