Southeast European Film Festival to Begin Next Week

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Starting next Wednesday, April 30th, Los Angeles will be the site for the annual Southeast European Film Festival. Challenging clichés about Southeast Europe, the festival intends to promote understanding about the various cultures and societies that comprise the territory also known as the Balkans.

On April 30th the Festival will kick things off at the Goethe Institute in LA with two films focusing on a theme of legacies of the past. On that night a Romanian film, “Cold Waves”, will simultaneously get its United States premier and open the festival. Directed by Alexandru Solomon, the film provides a snapshot of the Cold War era in Europe, exploring themes of political propaganda. Following “Cold Waves”, the opening night will end with a screening of “With Death as the Only Certain Fate”, a documentary by Austrian filmmaker Andrina Mracnikar that tells the stories of Carinthian Slovenians.

Other themes that the will be broached throughout the festival include War and the pursuit of justice, women of Southeast Europe, and mending borders.

The Goethe Institute will be the site of the SEFF from April 30th until May 4th, during which there will be a Filmmakers Kiosk Program, providing exclusive presentations of films about larger than life people and places that left a lasting impact on the filmmakers.

On May 5th the festival will close at the Clarity Theater in Beverly Hills. The closing night gala will include two films. “Have you Ever Heard About Vukovar”, a short by Italian filmmaker Paolo Borraccetti will be screened preceding the closing film of the festival, a documentary by filmmaker Ozren Milharcic, “Enter the Dragon”. Milharcic’s film chronicles the story of a Serb and a Croat who come together in their desire to build a monument to their hero, Bruce Lee.

For more information, including ticket prices and a full festival schedule, visit www.seefilmla.org

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Christopher P. Duffy

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