This time Polish documentaries have captivated the Italian audience. At the 52nd Festival dei Popoli – International Documentary Film Festival in Florence that took place from 12th to the 19th of November 2011 two productions stood on the podium – “Argentinian Lesson” by Wojciech Staroń and “Vakha and Magomed” by Marta Prus.

Wojciech Staroń, the director of “Argentinian Lesson”, was crowned best director “for his truly beautiful and accomplished film." In the festival’s international competition, the jury assigned the Best Short Film Award to Marta Prus for  “Vakha and Magomed”, “a deeply moving portrait of parenthood told with great respect and care."

“Argentinian Lesson”, co-produced by Staroń Films and TVP1, tells the story of the director’s eight-year-old son, Janek, who along with his parents moves to Argentina for two years. For Janek, the trip is an encounter with a new language. Assisted by his Argentinean friend, the boy enters the fascinating world of games but also discovers the bitter taste of childhood that is prematurely tainted with the adults’ problems he has so far has been unaware of. 

Click here to read an interview with Wojciech Staroń.

Vakha and his ten-year-old son Mahomed, the protagonists of „Vakha and Magomed” by Marta Prus, emigrated from Chechnya to Poland. The film depicts their everyday struggle to lead a normal life despite the harsh reality of their new life in a refugee centre in Warsaw (Poland).

Click here to read an interview with Marta Prus.

The 52nd Festival dei Popoli took place in Florence between 12-19 November.

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