For its fifth edition, the Durres International Film Summerfest, still headed by Anila Varfi, was suddenly facing, like many other festivals, the current crisis. But with the support of the Albanian Ministry of Culture and the city of Durres, Varfi has been able to carry this edition once again despite financial and technical issues. This year, the festival was once again alternating between Albanian premieres of important European productions (eight movies in the "Contemporary Visions" selection) and a "Balkan World" selection (six movies) which included several world premieres. The festival also showed five documentaries about the Balkans and ten short features mainly directed by Albanian film students.
Amongst the other events of the week were Skype interviews with the legendary director Milos Forman (accompanied by the premiere of a documentary about his career), and Lee Percy, director of American Dreaming, and the presentation of the Albanian classic movie Kapedani (The Captain, 1972). By opening with Christophe Honoré's The Beloved (Les Bien Aimés), and later showing Pierre Schoeller's The Minister (L'Exercice de l'état), the festival made a clear homage to modern French cinema. The Audience Award went to the movie The Code of Life (Kodi i Jetës), while the palmares mainly distinguished two movies: the historical drama Lidice (best movie) and the French political movie The Minister (best actor and director). The FIPRESCI prize went to White Lions (Beli Lavovi), by Lazar Ristovski. (Pierre-Simon Gutman)
Durres International Film Summerfest: www.ifsdurres.al