First loves and disappointments, relationships with parents, lies and honesty, passing away, standing up for goals, the importance of the bond of brotherhood, friendship and acceptance, compassion – the films presented at Cinemira are about important issues that concern children’s lives. At the 6th Cinemira International Children’s and Youth Film Festival, around 80 works from many countries around the world compete for the Golden Squirrel awards in seven categories.
Most of the films presented at the festival have never been seen before by Hungarian audiences. In the panoramic screenings running parallel to the short film competition, the British film Scrapper, which was awarded the jury’s main prize at the 2023 Sundance festival, and the Japanese anime Awarded in Annecy, The Tunnel To Summer, The Exit Of Goodbyes
will be presented for the first time.
On October 21-22, Cinemira TEEN at the Corvin cinema is for teenagers, while on October 28-29 Cinemira KIDS at Kristály in Margitsziget welcomes visitors with screenings and interactive accompanying programs for the little ones. Petra Gubik, Kati Zsurzs, Ferenc Elek, Vilmos Gryllus and Vivien Rujder will also be guests of the festival.
“Young people spend a significant part of their time online. The festival puts a lot of emphasis on the fact that children, instead of being passive and often lonely consumers, become thinking, conscious creators on a live platform, in community,” says filmmaker Nóra Lakos, director of the Cinemira International Children’s and Youth Film Festival, who is a filmmaker who encourages children to make their own movies.
During the interactive programs, children can learn workshop secrets from voice actors of popular cartoon heroes and they can also try their hand behind the microphone and in front of the camera: Led by casting director Andrea Steinhauser, the festival is looking for child actors for domestic and international productions. As part of Cinemira TEEN, popular actors tell young people about their film careers.
The aim of the festival is for the children to use the technical tools they already have in their hands for creation instead of passive use: during both Cinemira weekends they can shoot animated and short films, and after Vilmos Gryllus’ concert at KIDS, they can make a real music video together with the founder of Kaláka.
At Cinemira TEEN, young people can meet Gábor Reisz, the director of the film Explanation For Everything, which won an award at the Venice International Film Festival, Áron Gauder, the creator of the Hungarian animated feature The Four Souls of the Coyote, submitted for the 2024 Oscar in the best international film category, and Palme d’Or award for short films winner Anna Flóra Buda, the creator of 27.
In the thematic short film blocks for teenagers, you can find both Hungarian and international works, animations and live-action films. Flóra Chilton’s work Against the Wind, awarded at last year’s Cinemira, in which a pair of twins living in a children’s home try to find their parents.
Me, I’m Dacing Too is about Iran, where it’s forbidden for women to dance in the public space, but also in the home environment. However, the hero of Mohammad Valizadegan’s story, Saba, takes all the risks and tries to realize his dream of becoming a dancer. Hedgehog shows the impact of the Ukrainian-Russian war on human relations from a very personal point of view.
At the festival panorama screenings also await the visitors. The opening film of Cinemira TEEN, the Sundance Grand Prize-winning British film Scrapper, Charlotte Regan’s directorial debut is a vibrant and fascinating film about the joys and heartaches of adolescence and unexpected fatherhood. During the first weekend of Cinemira, the Japanese sci-fi anime The Tunnel To Summer, The Exit Of Goodbyes will also be shown in Hungarian cinemas for the first time. Adapted from Mei Hachimoku’s light novel, it is a bittersweet tale of love, grief and faith in life.
In the panora program of Cinemira KIDS, the Norwegian film Dancing Queen, which won the Generation Kplus award at the Berlinale, will be shown as the opening film, and the animation Tomi, Polli and the magic light will also be shown in the same section.
The films shown on Cinemira can serve as a handhold for children, help them become more open and better navigate the key challenges and changes facing them. Young people can not only recognize themselves in these stories, but also meet different cultures. The most important recognition of the festival is the audience award, because it is decided by the festival’s target audience, a jury of children.