Every year, Off Plus Camera holds a Polish feature film competition, dedicated to local movies which opened during the past year. Selected from numerous titles, the competition offers a wide range of subjects, styles and artistic approaches. Significantly, the Polish competition is judged by an international jury consisting only of foreign experts. This is in order to identify a winning film which speaks a universal language and can be understood outside of its national context. The jury members – casting director Victoria Thomas, costume designer Joanna Johnston, film editor Valter Fasano – were also responsible for awarding actors in three categories: Best Actress, Best Actor, Best Acting Debut.
The winning film, which received the Kulcyzk Foundation Award of 300,000 PLN, was Hatred (Wolyn) by Wojtek Smarzowski. The audience’s enthusiastic reaction to the result – a standing ovation – shows how momentous this film is for everyone who has seen it. The horror of the Polish-Ukrainian conflict of 1943 is shown from a universal perspective, and the key word in this film is not hatred but love. (Anita Skwara, edited by Lesley Chow)
OFF CAMERA International Festival of Independent Cinema, Krakow: