CinEast 2020 – the end

by Maddy, October 29th 2020

The 13th edition of the CinEast festival has come to an end. I would say that it was a successful edition, even with its hybrid scenery and social distancing rules. It was indeed the lucky 13th edition, as it has ended just before new rules are being put in place considering the escalating situation.

Now, I will help you re-live the last week of the festival by talking about three films I have seen: Eden, Collective and Sweat.

Eden by Ágnes Kocsis is a Hungarian film worth watching in these times of bubbles and confinement as it is easy to understand how Éva feels living alone in her apartment, without being able to go outside or interact with anyone else except a handful of people. This film covers the steps Éva takes in the road of accepting her condition, while also following the development of a new relationship with her psychotherapist. The way he acted around her showed that sometimes people do no need to be isolated to feel lonely and that the person we least expect might make us depend on their existence. After seeing the film, I understood why CinEast chose this movie to be the visual presentation of this edition.

Collective by Alexandru Nanau is a Romanian documentary that follows the press-investigation of Romanian health system corruption, corruption which came into light after a tragic fire at a rock concert in Bucharest, a fire that had many victims. Facts are facts, and they are well presented in this documentary: people died in the hospitals after the tragedy but not from their burn wounds: they perished from staying in the hospital and contacting hospital infections.  Considering the depth of the story and the level of corruption unraveled, I find it more useful to tell you to go see the movie whenever you have the opportunity instead of giving you more details. One big flaw I find is the title of the documentary, as it is the same as the club where the tragedy happened, and the documentary focuses more on the investigation that was put in place by this unfortunate event, and very little on how the victims’ lives changed.

Sweat by Magnus von Horn shows the story of the influencer Sylwia, fitness star and motivator. The subject is contemporary and raises a lot of issues that come with being famous on social media, especially what happens behind the camera and how do a few days in the life of an influencer look when the cameras aren’t rolling.

The last movie was presented after the awards ceremony last Saturday.

There were seven awards:

  • Critic’s prize, awarded by the Press Jury: Stories from the Chestnut Woods by Gregor Božič
  • Special mention, by the Press Jury: Father by Srdan Golubović
  • Special Jury Prize: Mare by Andrea Štaka
  • Grand Prix: Servants by Ivan Ostrochovský
  • Audience Award: Collective by Alexandru Nanau
  • Audience Award for Shorts: Way of Silvie by Verica Pospíšilová Kordić (animation), Lake of Happiness by Aliaksei Paluyan (fiction), We have one heart by Katarzyna Warzecha (documentary).
(c) Servants, Grand Prix

All in all, although the harsh situation we are in, due to the COVID-19 pandemic, CinEast managed to take place this year (even if it has been under a special format) and managed to bring the same magic and awe as in the previous editions. To that I would like to thank the CinEast team for providing us with a sense of normality and an event that reminds us of the world before this year. Hopefully, next year we will meet again in more normal circumstances. Although this, the festival has been a warm reminder on how easily people can adapt and that even through hard time, just like CinEast this year, we will prevail.