Last two years our way of existing in the world has fundamentally changed.  Our interactions, possibilities, and ideas about intimacy have transformed. Suddenly we became submerged in the biology, materiality, and fragility of our bodies, and at the same time completely physically separated from others. Our bodies have become a space of ambivalence and conflict; lonely, longing, digital.

Through film and supporting program of the 8th Student International Film Festival (STIFF) we aim to discuss and question ideas about the body in all its complexity – from the body of film to the body in film, we wish to explore the unpredictable dance of protagonists, authors and its audience and the ways their interaction influences experience of the film. In a brave, gentile, and honest way this year’s selection talks about the fragility of our worlds, transformation, and transience.

STIFF’s competition program consists of 38 films of all genres from 17 countries of the world, divided into 10 slots. Six young authors from our New School of Documentary Film will introduce their work out of competition.

The Festival opens on Thursday, 4.11. at 19:00h with the program Thunders, a rich film journey through reminiscing, laughter, sighs, and silence. This slot brings us a multiple award-winning documentary film Then Comes The Evening (Maja Novaković) that confronts us with the reality of the body in a visceral and poetic way. The documentary film All The Things I’ll Never Tell You (Bela Bračko-Milešević) initiates a play of words and images; a collage of photographs and flashes leads to an intimate reconstruction of the pater familias. Humorous animation Cockpera (Kata Gugić) creates an operatic male competition where the more cunning will win, and the Israelian documentary Open Your Mouth (Tamara Mamon) follows three boys growing up between Arabic and Jewish culture, finding new directions through their community.

Film screenings will be followed by discussions with numerous Croatian and regional authors in the discursive program Stitches. The program consists of three talks and each of them opens up different themes and perspectives: Round And Round We Go (Saturday, 6.11. at 14:00h) gathers Croatian animators and considers this film form as a possible space of freedom from the unpredictable and limiting circumstances of our everyday life. Touches (Saturday, 6.11. at 21:30h) deliberates on the ambivalence of intimate relationships as initiators of film stories. The last day of the festival (Sunday, 7.11. at 15:00h) is dedicated to documentary filmmaking and the complex relationship of directors with their protagonists in the program Between Glances.

International exhibition In Trasmission at the Gallery SKC will additionaly explore the theme of the festival. Through different forms and styles from narrative, critical, grotesque, to experimental, absurd and abstract short films, animations and video works, exhibition will question ways in which corporality forms/deforms through time, virtual and physical spaces, and how it is intertwined with the dominant ideologies of today. The exhibition is imagined as an ambiental audio-visual experience thinking about the body in a contemporary context through the works of 15 international artists and animators. The curator Elena Apostolovski is preparing the exhibition setup in collaboration with visual artist Damjan Šporčić and the students of University of Rijeka.

Join us on a transformative visual journey!