About the festival
"Kratkofil" appeared as the International Short Film Festival in 2007 in Banja Luka, and up until 2010 it stood for one of the most significant cultural events at regional and global short film scene.
During the period of reconstruction in 2010, the festival has been developing some new concepts and improving the old ones. As a result, "Kratkofil" introduced feature-length films and it officially became International Film Festival "Kratkofil Plus". Since 2007, the festival has screened hundreds of short, feature, animated, documentary and experimental films from all over the globe.
In 2012, the festival came up with the new program called "Kratkofil Junior" which is devoted to children and teenagers. "Kratkofil Junior" provides children with informal education in the field of filmmaking industry, and from 2013 and on, this program has been supported and helped by the Office of UNICEF in Bosnia and Herzegovina.
In cooperation with many significant and similar festivals such as Clermont-Ferrand, Tampere Film Festival, Sydney Film Festival, Dublin International Film Festival, Uppsala International Short Film Festival, Kid's Festival, Reelport, DOK Leipzig, and so on, "Kratkofil Plus" introduced its public to popular events and developments in the world of short and feature-length films, including bold, avant-garde and experimental works.
The first festival's editions were marked by the "Focus" program, which was focused on the Grand-Prix winning country from the previous festival. Through this particular program, the audience had a chance to get familiar with cinematography, culture, art and tradition of the winning countries.
Having in mind the fact that one of the main festival's goals was education and promotion of domestic filmmakers, we created the project called "Punch International" which refers to school of activist documentary film, open to everyone who is interested in filmmaking.
Based on that, we can say that "Kratkofil Plus", at the moment, is placed at the top of cultural events in the country, region and even further.
1. International Short Film Festival "Kratkofil" celebrated short film as an artistic form, spiced up with unusual, but interesting means of expression. Also, a great number of top-quality films was screened this year, and the public was very enthusiastic and supportive towards the festival. The fact that creativity and beauty require certain preconditions, devotion and faith, was the motto upon which the festival was created.
The main goal was to present totally different picture of the world full of happiness, love, black and white.
The first edition of "Kratkofil" was marked by the film "Seed" directed by Wojciech Kasperski, which was awarded by the 5-member jury: Gian Vittorio Baldi (producer and director), Jack Gerbes (director of the Maryland Film Office), Goran Devic (director), Pjer Zalica (director) and Miroslav Momcilovic (director). According to jury's opinion, this film had managed to show conciliation with personal tragedy, in the great Eastern-European documentary manner, without losing the sense for nuance, along with basing film's qualities in things that are left unsaid.
Italian producer and director, Gian Vittorio Baldi, expressed his honour and enthusiasm about being invited to "Kratkofil", and he emphasized the great quality of the films and wished the festival a long and successful life.
Second festival's edition was formed in the same spirit as the first edition, with the idea of turning the festival into the centre of artistic exchanges in the field of short films.
In competition program we had 50 films from all over the world, including feature length, animated, documentary and experimental film categories. Beside competition program, different themes and programs were presented, from human rights, homosexual relationships, to German, Swedish, Polish, Canadian and Russian contemporary scenes, teenage films and experimental music videos.
Grand-Prix of this year's festival went to Iceland, to director Grimur Hakonarson, for the film "Wrestling". Jury was composed of Heinz Hermanns (International Short Film Festival Interfilm Berlin), Milorad Milinkovic (director), Djelo Hadziselimovic (producer), Gaelle Jones (producer of Chateau-Rouge Paris), Wojciech Kasperski (director from Poland). Kasperski was a member of jury, according to the newly-established festival's rule that director of the winning film would be in a jury team next year.
Robert Nickson, producer and professor from New York, held a workshop on the topic - market and production of films, and stated that it is a smart good idea for Banja Luka to have such film festival.
"All this is very nice. I think the festival is great, especially because it brings together so many filmmakers at one place. I had an amazing and unforgettable time while teaching and I gave my best to say a lot about producing and how authors should convince producers to open up their wallets and finance similar projects", said Nickson.
Each year the festival was held under a certain motto. First two years it was mainly focused on a good atmosphere and entertainment. However, this year there was a big turnover and the festival faced itself against actual corporative atmosphere. Based on that, we formed a slogan "Profit vs Art", as a reference to the main theme of 2009 - "How to be an artist in a profit society?"
In order to give a concrete and clear contribution to the wider cultural plan, it is necessary to create a festival in accordance with the strategy of cultural politics of a country. Otherwise, the festival loses its essential meaning.
In the competition program, we introduced around 40 films which framed our primary goal, along with a rich accompanying program.
Jury, in the following composition: Grimur Hakonarson (director from Iceland), Jovan Todorovic (director), Nikola Stojanovic (director), Juka Peka Lakso (director of Tampere Film Festival), Evald Oterstad (director), had awarded Grand-Prix to the film "Spirits" by Finish director Jan Ljäs.
In a world full of suffer and pain, that we are faced with on everyday basis through different media channels, we have created certain emotional distance. In another words, we are receiving unpleasant information, but they do not have effect on us anymore. This is exactly the theme of the winning film.
"In order to separate ourselves from other film festivals, it is necessary to include polemic approach to film, and to insist on affirmation of film enthusiasts, revolutionists, and reformists on a long term basis.", said Natasa Milovic, executive director of the third festival.
Through the process of reconstruction, which was the festival's motto at the same time, the main concept was improved. Thus, International Short Film Festival "Kratkofil" changed its name into International Film Festival "Kratkofil Plus". There was no competition program this year.
The new concept presented a review program, where we had famous and successful feature-length films, unavailable in local cinemas.
By introducing these changes, we wanted to provide our public with some new, diverse content which would enable them to enjoy some great achievements of the seventh art.
The festival's exclusivity was the film "I Already Am What I Want to Have", directed by Dane Komljen from Banja Luka, who won a third prize for this film at Cannes in "Sinefondasion" competition.
One of the most famous independent directors, Zelimir Zilnik, wished the festival a long and successful life, at his opening speech.
"The fact that the opening film comes from Banja Luka and as such, it has achieved a great success at Cannes festival, tells us that "Kratkofil" has a lot of potential for further improvement and development. Enthusiasm of "Kratkofil" team and the audience that filled the fortressto the last row, are the force upon which the festival should grow and last.", said Zilnik.
Fifth edition of "Kratkofil Plus" has presented a larger, high quality content, while focusing on Finish cinematography. Besides, programs of Animateka (Belgrade), Kid's Fest, Reelport, DOK Leipzig were screened, and also artists of FixC introduced themselves, in the aim of continuing the process of informing and networking.
This year the festival returned to its main part - the competition program, which was formed by 42 films from 25 different countries.
Three-member jury, composed of Iva Plemic-Divjak (producer from Belgrade), Ljubisa Savanovic (actor from Banja Luka) and Jan Ijas (Finish director) awarded Grand-Prix to the "Stardust" by Nikolas Provost from Belgium.
The jury said that Grand Prix was given to Provost due to "unique film reflection of everyday life, where characters are identified with regular people, and in return - they get a bit of stardust".
A large number of local, regional and global filmmakers were hosted as guests and lecturers. The festival was visited by: Zelimir Zilnik (director), Lazar Stojanovic (director), Robert Zuber (director and journalist), Lordan Zafranovic (director and screenwriter), Srdjan Vuletic (director), Dragan Jelicic (film critic), Irena Taskovski (producer), Boris Mitic (director), Nikola Djuricko (actor), Nebojsa Glogovac (actor), Robert Nickson (producer and professor of Tisæ school), Carlo Varini (director of photography and professor at La Femis school in Paris), Andrija Zafranovic (film installer and professor at FAMU school in Prague), Alastair Thorne (screenwriter and professor at UCLA), Stefano Tealdi (producer of Stefilm International), Marko Vidojkovic (writer), Iva Plemic-Divjak (producer), Milutin Milosevic (actor) and many others.
Prior to 6. International Film Festival "Kratkofil Plus", UKS "Lanterna", in cooperation with Public Relations Office of US Embassy in Bosnia and Herzegovina, had organized a project called "Kratkofil Punch". Within this project, we held a school of activist documentary film (November 14-18, 2011), where participants were learning things related to production of a documentary. "Kratkofil Punch" workshop resulted in one single film which experienced its premiere at "Kratkofil Plus" in 2012.
It is important to mention that "Kratkofil Junior", as a new festival's program devoted to children, was officially formed this year.
The festival itself was held under the motto "Motorso" - therefore, while trying to find traces of all those tendencies that occur in human's head and run its activities, it appears that these tendencies are moving from bottom up to the head. Driven by the heart, stomach, and genitalia, tendencies are going from torso to the head. It could be said that the controller inside of your torso is driven by the controller inside of your head, which is the essence of one engine, of one "motorso".
Along with 40 short films from all over the world, in competition for Grand Prix and awards for the best feature-length, documentary, animated, regional and experimental film, there were also very attractive films screened, such as short film "Donut", a product of newly-established festival's program - "Kratkofil Junior".
Besides 40 films in the competition program, this year's festival brought us 4 feature-length films, within the program "Panorama Plus", as well as the selection of numerous films screened at globally famous festivals such as "Zubroffka" (Poland) and "Timishort" (Romania).
Also, we enjoyed the movies of students of Academy of Arts in Banja Luka. In cooperation with British Council, we screened short films in two blocks - BAFTA and "The best of first light".
Uniqueness of this festival was a newly-formed category "Friends" which included some works that were supposed to be screened at "Kratkofil Plus", but due to different reasons this was not possible (length, date of production, participation at some other festivals and so on.) Every film that we screened within this program has come from filmmakers or production companies close to our festival, and that is exactly the logic behind the name "Friends".
"Kratkofil Plus" organized lots of workshops and lectures, and among them - 2nd "Kratkofil Junior" workshop, where children and teenagers worked on education and production of the film called "Apple of Discord", which was screened at the closing ceremony of the 7th "Kratkofil Plus".
Grand Prix of the festival was awarded to the film "Noble Stallion" by Swedish directors Sofia Priftis and Linus Harti. The best feature-length film was "Human Factor" by Thibault Le Texera from France. The best animated film was "Bendito Machine IV" by Jossie Malis from Spain, and the best documentary - "Arekara, the afterlife" by Momoko Seto from France. The best experimental film was |"Washed" by Daphne Mero, and the best regional film was "Coffee with jam" by Filip Peruzovic from Croatia. The audience awarded the film "Village Whistle" directed by Nicholas Rowell and Hannah Salvanes McLean from Great Britain.
The competition program of the 8th "Kratkofil Plus" had 31 short films from 25 countries, and two of them were from Bosnia and Herzegovina. The festival was opened by the films produced within "Kratkofil Junior", supported by UNICEF. For the first time, outside the competition, these films were awarded by the jury.
Besides projections at Open Air at fortress Kastel, we enjoyed "Panorama Plus" program which showed two feature-length films, and promotion of the book "Seducer" by Dejan Ognjanovic. The last festival's day was reserved for the masterclass held by Jovana Nikolic from production company "Prababa" Belgrade, and its topic was the production of documentaries in a society undevoted to cultural development.
Specificity of this festival was screening of 1min-long films made within the project "Take it seriously - we are talking about possibilities" created by NGO "Genesis Project" from Banja Luka, in cooperation with UNICEF, USAID and EU Delegation in Bosnia and Herzegovina. The aim of these films was promotion of children rights, social inclusion with the special focus on rights of children with dissabilities.
The jury consisted of Eva Pa, Milos Milosevic and Elin Bennett, awarded Grand Prix to film "Mont d' Or" by Karen Vazquez Guadarrama from Belgium. The award for the best experimental film went to Russian director Aleksej Dimirtijev for the film "The shadow of your smile", and the best documentary was the film "The Greatest" by Katarzyne Gondek. Two films - "Pandas" and "Code" shared the award for the best animated film. The film "Boles" by Spele Cadez from Slovenia won the prize for the best regional film and finally - the audience awarded the film "Audition" by Pierre Nineya from France.