Bas Ass East


If you are among those who believe that Eastern European films are still grey and brown and smell of 70s-style furniture, then we have a surprise for you: Okay, you have probably guessed it - they are far from it!

In preparation for this year's film programme it became clear that almost every time we were faced with a film from Eastern Europe, we were taken completely by surprise  by the desire to challenge film language and the ability to play with the craft of filmmaking. Not one of the 12 films we have gathered here is content with just telling a good story. Not one rolls out the soft rug as broadly as possible to secure a place in mainstream cinemas. These films, they want more.

They are full of undiluted realities. Lasting wounds after wars and conflicts, and quarrels where swearwords and vodka bottles are being thrown around in equal measures. But there is also a large portion of black humour to help cope with it all. The films are highly contemporary, and they are innovative because they meet the present with a proud Eastern European tradition of telling stories in parables and with Kafkaesque absurdities. They are bad ass.