International Documentary Film Festival Vienna 2019

Th, 23. – We, 29. May 2019

Welcome to cutting edge documentary cinema! From 23. – 29. May 2019, ethnocineca– International Documentary Film Festival Vienna presented the diversity of international documentary film art in Vienna. The 13th festival edition presented a programme that addresses current issues of political, social and cultural coexistence. With 59 films, numerous film talks and an extensive side programme, international filmmakers and social scientists, we invited you to engage with the world through the medium of film. 

This year’s festival focus AT RISK attended to politically controversial, socially critical and deeply personal documentaries. Often filmmakers and their protagonists take high personal risks and endanger themselves to get their stories on screen. It is precisely these courageous productions that allow us to learn about the personal destinies of „others“ and to look beyond our own familiar life-worlds.

We have chosen films that respond to burning questions of our time and negotiate controversial topics in all their complexity: political hierarchies and power are juxtaposed with social utopias, economic principles with envisioned alternatives. Questions of future ecologies are met with visionary insight and cultural and religious boundaries are challenged by personal stories. Gender equality and sexuality are negotiated multi-dimensionally. What does it mean for people to be involved in front of and behind the camera and how can they address these questions from their respective life situations? These are some of the questions we address in this year’s side-programme. We opened with a keynote lecture by Dr. Eva van Roekel, filmmaker and anthropologist at the University of Amsterdam. In her talk Filmmakers at Riskshe discussed opportunities and dangers of shared documentary filmmaking in politically precarious circumstances. Based on her own research with convicted Argentine military personnel, she invited us to critically questioning collaborative filmmaking. In this year’s masterclass, Ziad Khaltoum, who is visiting ethnocineca for the second time, allowed us to gain insight into his experiences and challenges as a filmmaker in the Syrian war. He demonstrated how one can create politically significant and deeply personal contemporary documentaries about war and its consequences. 

In the World Museum Vienna, filmmakers Giorgio Ferrero and Alexander Hick will engaged in a discussion about the risks of globalisation and the capitalist growth paradigm. We explored aesthetic, narrative and cinematic approaches to discuss a globalised economy, its implications for our climate and the people affected by it. In a film talk on After Prayers with filmmaker Simone Mestroni and cultural and social anthropologist Ulrike Davis-Sulikowski we explored the flows from poetry to riots, resistance and memory through historical and deeply personal experiences that are embedded in Mestroni’s documentary. Finally, on the last day of the festival six films of this year’s ethnocineca filmworkshop At Risk in the City celebrated their world premiere in the presence of the workshop participants.

Trailer 2019

TEAM 2019

Artistic Directors: Marie-Christine Hartig, Martin Lintner, Katja Seidel
Management: Matthias Grausgruber
Programme Coordination: Nóra Soponyai, Simone Traunmüller
Marketing: Sophie Bitzinger, Rocío Burchard Rodriguez
Programme Coordination: Nóra Soponyai, Simone Traunmüller
Marketing: Sophie Bitzinger, Rocío Burchard Rodriguez
Cooperations: Hannah Hauptmann
Filmworkshop: Katja Seidel, Sophie Wagner
Guest Service: Nóra Soponyai, Simone Traunmüller
Funding: Martin Lintner, Katja Seidel
Sponsoring: Marie-Christine Hartig
Technics and Film Prints: Matthias Grausgruber
Website: Matthias Grausgruber, Martin Lintner
Festivaltrailer: Martin Lintner / Musik: Benjamin Smyrek
Graphics: Cati Krüger, Martin Lintner
Press: Elke Weilharter, Sky unlimited

Programme Curation

International Documentary Award (IDA): Marie-Christine Hartig, Martin Lintner
Austrian Documentary Award (ADA): Marie-Christine Hartig, Martin Lintner, Katja Seidel
Excellence in Visual Anthropology Award (EVA): Katja Seidel, Hannah Hauptmann
International Shorts Award (ISA): : Rocío Burchard Rodriguez, Saskya Tschebann
Ethnocineca Student Shorts Award (ESSA): Nóra Soponyai, Elena Staroste, Simone Traunmüller, Matthias Grausgruber