International Competition

The International Competition traditionally includes the world’s best documentary films, presenting the most recent documentaries that bring together important themes with exclusive handling of form.

The selection process also places emphasis on geographic diversity – the competing films introduce viewers to current events in Europe as well as stories from South America, Asia, and Africa. One of the most topical films is Courage, reflecting last year’s protests in Belarus from the viewpoint of the Belarus Free Theatre ensemble. Another fascinating story is Danish director Mads Brügger’s film The Mole, which tracks a secret agent who infiltrates the highest echelons of North Korea’s politburo. A documentary may be unique on the basis of a sophisticated formal approach or possibly because of the filmmaker’s dangerous closeness to the captured events. As a result, in this competitive presentation of the world’s best, the film Cuban Dancer – a captivatingly shot film about a Cuban dancer’s migration to the USA – can be seen alongside Sabaya – the adrenaline-filled portrayal of the liberation of Yezidi women enslaved by Islamic State.

The International Competition offers a distinctive mix of approaches and themes from all over the globe. Each film offers a unique experience, in many cases supported by its inclusion at the most prestigious international festivals or the fact it is enjoying its premiere.

Uprostřed stojí voják v těžké výstroji. Před sebou má opřený štít, ve kterém je zasunutá fialová květina. Přes obličej má masku, která zakrývá jeho nos a tváře, hledí do dáli. Po jeho pravici i levici stojí o kousek dál a o pár schodů výš další vojáci./In the middle stands a soldier in heavy body armour. He has a shield in front of him, in which a purple flower is inserted. He has a mask over his face that covers his nose and cheeks; he is looking into the distance. Other soldiers stand to his right and left, a little further and a few steps higher.

Films in category International Competition

A solitary woman dressed in white is holding the traditional Belarusian flag – a single red stripe between two white ones. Both the flag and the woman’s hair are fluttering in the wind. There are military units – armed men dressed in black – standing in the background.

Courage

For 14 years, the Belarusian Free Theatre has bravely criticised Lukashenko's authoritarian regime in its performances. But at a time when the country is at a crossroads, the functioning of the theatre is more endangered than ever before.

A young man wearing a skin-tight t-shirt and leggings is performing an impressive dance jump in the middle of a city street.

Cuban Dancer

Alexis dreams of becoming the best Cuban dancer, but before he can dance through the National Ballet School in Havana, life brings him an unexpected change: his parents decide to leave Cuba.

An older man wearing a baseball cap is sitting on a bed and looking at the tape recorder he holds in his hands. He is inside a wooden building. There is a mosquito net draped by the bed and piles of paper on shelves.

Nothing but the Sun

Mateo was born into the Ayoreo people in the Paraguayan primeval forest. As he ages, he feels the need to preserve the unique heritage of his people and pass it on to future generations.

A man wearing a traditional African shirt stands with raised arms in the foreground. Behind him are some of his followers wearing dark glasses and shirts with election campaign slogans. In the background there are crowds of other people. 

President

The end of Robert Mugabe’s dictatorship brought Zimbabwe hope for change. Only the election of a new president will show if the country can leave behind its totalitarian past and embark on the path of true democracy.

An older man carries a large cross on his shoulder in the foreground. In the background, we see three other men wearing suits, a car, and a forested mountain landscape.

Reconciliation

In a case of murder, Albanian tradition obliged the victim’s family to either publicly forgive the perpetrator or take their revenge. Needless to say, such a choice has a massive impact on the whole society.

A man with a receding hairline, moustache and a chiselled profile is in the forefront and anxiously looks to the right. Behind him we see a dry, sandy horizon with tents and figures wearing black burkas.

Sabaya

A whole city of Yazidi residents was left at the mercy of ISIS. The men's wives ended up in slavery. A handful of ordinary men set out to save them. But while it may seem like something out of an adventure novel, this story is a reality.

The photo shows the open sea. In the centre of the shot and seen from a distance there is a barge carrying a big leafy tree. 

Taming the Garden

The roots of centuries-old Georgian trees go deep. But not deep enough to avoid being excavated and transported to the private garden of a former prime minister.

A man in a Spiderman costume pushes a tricycle carrying textile banners with Chinese writing.

The Man Who Was Looking For His Son

Every year, a huge number of children disappear without a trace in China, and desperate parents search for them tirelessly. The abduction of toddlers and their sale to childless couples has been an unaddressed social problem for decades.

A bald man with a serious expression looks out of a bus window. It is dark outside and we see his reflection in the glass.

The Mole

Unconventional Danish director Mads Brügger has yet again shifted the boundaries of his original work. This time he set a trap – and caught the dictatorial North Korean regime.

In the black and white photo we see a group of people standing on a rocky outcrop in the distance. Behind them there are two burning objects emitting black clouds of smoke. The people are standing or sitting, and some are climbing down the rock face.

This Rain Will Never Stop

Andrey and his family left war-torn Syria and settled in Ukraine, where they found themselves at the centre of another conflict.

Other Thematic Categories

Uprostřed stojí voják v těžké výstroji. Před sebou má opřený štít, ve kterém je zasunutá fialová květina. Přes obličej má masku, která zakrývá jeho nos a tváře, hledí do dáli. Po jeho pravici i levici stojí o kousek dál a o pár schodů výš další vojáci./In the middle stands a soldier in heavy body armour. He has a shield in front of him, in which a purple flower is inserted. He has a mask over his face that covers his nose and cheeks; he is looking into the distance. Other soldiers stand to his right and left, a little further and a few steps higher.

International Competition

The International Competition traditionally includes the world’s best documentary films, presenting the most recent documentaries that bring together important themes with exclusive handling of form....

Asi dvacet tváří hledí směrem do kamery. Jsou to Asiaté, přes pusu a nos mají chirurgickou roušku. Stojí těsně vedle sebe v řadách za sebou, muži i ženy promíchaně. V levé ruce drží kytice zabalené do papíru a v pravé čínskou vlaječku. Někteří s vlaječkou mávají, většina se tváří velmi vážně./About 20 faces are staring at the camera. They are Asians, they were surgical masks over their mouths and noses. They stand close together in rows, men and women mixed. Each of them holds a bouquet of flowers wrapped in paper in their left hand and a Chinese flag in their right. Some wave the flag, most look very serious.

Right To Know

This competitive section historically reveals human rights violations one should know about, even though they are rarely covered by the media. All the screened films share the key feature of strong activist...

Mužská hlava z poloprofilu zabírá pravou polovinu fotky. Muž má zavřené oči, má mokré vlasy sčesané dozadu, ze kterých stéká nahnědlá napěněná tekutina, která teče i přes obličej./A man

Czech Competition

This year, the Czech Competition category went through several about-faces. A physical festival, as envisioned in the initial plans for this edition, appeared to be a wonderful starting point for many...

Žena v modré zástěře stojí mezi vysokými regály. V ruce má červené sluchátko od vytáčecího telefonu, který stojí na poličce před ní.  Z telefonu vede kabel, který žena zastrkuje do zdířky ve stěně, která slouží jako ústředna./A woman in a blue apron stands between high shelves. In her hand she holds the red handset of a rotary phone, which is standing on the shelf in front of her. A cable leads from the phone, which the woman plugs into the socket in the wall, which serves as a switchboard.

Connection Lost

This year’s main thematic category reflects the reality many of us experience daily in the pandemic world. Some get more swallowed up by life online, others don’t have sufficient access or choose...

Ve třídě stojí před tabulí dvě řady žen v půlkruhu, tváří se vážně. Žena úplně vpravo drží papír a něco říká, dívá se směrem k nám. Na sobě mají oblečení spíše v šedavých a hnědých tónech./In a classroom, two rows of women stand in a semicircle in front of a blackboard, looking serious. The woman on the far right is holding a piece of paper and saying something, looking towards us. They are wearing dull grey and brown clothes.

Russian Standard

The category strives to bring a flexible image of a country in which the Czech film public has been historically interested. The selection was not made with the intent of solidifying the usual stereotypes...

Do zhasnuté místnosti vchází jeptiška. Je nasvícená světlem z chodby. V přední části jsou dvě postele, na každé spí jedna žena. Na jednou postelí je křížek./A nun enters a dark room lit only by a light from the hallway. In front there are two beds, one woman sleeping in each. There is a cross over one bed.

Our Daily Sex

“Give us this day our daily bread” – this phrase from the best-known Christian prayer is one of the most repeated spiritual and earthly mantras. It calls for satisfying one of the basic human needs...

Ve vodě je starší žena, je nahá, leží naznak, má bílé vlasy stažené dozadu, ruce si dává k zavřeným očím a má černě nalakované nehty. Voda má ocelovou barvu./An elderly woman is in the water. She is naked, lying on her back, her white hair pulled back, hands next to her closed eyes and black polished nails. The water is the colour of steel.

Old Age Rises

Young people don’t think about the fact that one day they will disappear forever. Maybe this is one of the reasons why senior citizens, although they make up about 16% of the Czech Republic’s population,...

Uprostřed vodní plochy jedou malé děti na červené oprýskané loďce. Dívka pádluje na své pravé straně, pádlo zrovna vytáhla z vody. Dívá se do nebe, kluk je v podřepu, kouše si prsty a jakoby se díval do kamery. Hladina vody je nahnědlá a klidná. V pozadí jsou po obou stranách domy na kůlech a vlevo vyrůstá z vody zeleň. Fotka má výrazné barvy./Small children are riding on a peeling red boat in the middle of the water. A girl is paddling on her right side, she has just pulled the paddle out of the water. She looks at the sky, a boy is squatting, biting his fingers and appears to be looking at the camera. The surface of the water is brown and calm. In the background there are houses on stilts on both sides and plants are growing out of the water on the left. The photo has vibrant colours.

Journeys To Freedom

This category comprises films set in countries with non-democratic regimes and from areas where People in Need is active – whether providing humanitarian and development aid or supporting human rights...

Mezi krajkovými bílými záclonami zavěšenými v několika řadách za sebou zpola vykukuje klidně sedící muž v bílém oblečení, nohy má křížem. Zprava k němu přichází tygr./Between several rows of hanging white curtains, a man wearing white clothes and with legs crossed peeks out at us. A tiger approaches him from the right.

UnEarthed

Every year, One World brings to the table questions about environmental balance. Last year, the traditional UnEarthed category even became the festival’s main section. This year, the festival once again...

Dívka je ve vodě, před ledovou stěnou. Vypadá to, jakoby šlapala vodu. Hlavu má nad hladinou, na očích má potápěčské brýle. Pod hladinou vidíme zbytek těla, na nohou má ploutve. Voda je průzračně modrá a hladina lehce zvlněná./A girl is in the water, in front of a wall of ice. It looks like she

Long Live Life

The festival’s annual Long Live Life! section represents an oasis of relaxation in our programme. It is devoted to films that tell stories of unusual hobbies and alternative lifestyles, which move life...

Muž drží před svým obličejem zvětšovací sklo kulatého tvaru, skrz které vidíme jeho tvář. Muž se tváří vážně, má latinskoamerické rysy, na hlavě má černou kšiltovku./A man is holding a round magnifying glass in front of his face, through which we can see his face. The man looks serious. He has Latin American features and has a black cap on his head.

Panorama

This popular category comprising the greatest hits of the past season once again offers a diverse mix of themes. Two notable Hungarian HBO productions show us how simply trauma can arise from a trip to...

Ve zpětném zrcátku, které je v pravé části fotky, se odráží část tváře blonďaté ženy středního věku. Pozadí fotky je rozmazané, zbarvené do zelena s pár odrazy světel jiných aut./The rear-view mirror, which is on the right side of the photo, reflects part of the face of a middle-aged blonde woman. The background of the photo is blurred, coloured green with a few reflections of the lights of other cars.

Short and Apt

In addition to feature-length documentaries, One World will once again offer human rights audio-visual content in short-length format. These short documentaries are organised into three packages: two...

Grafika počítačové hry. Nepravidelný útvar hnědé barvy levituje uprostřed. V pozadí jsou nazlátlé klenby, ve kterých se odráží světlo. V pásmu mezi útvarem a klenbami jsou čtyři roztříštěné objekty připomínající zrcadla, jsou zpola rozpadlé. Pod nimi je rozmázlá stříbřitá barva připomínající pivní pěnu./Computer game graphics. An irregular brown formation levitates in the middle. In the background are golden vaults, in which light is reflected. In the zone between the formation and the vaults, there are four shattered objects resembling mirrors, they are half disintegrated. Beneath them is a smudged silvery colour somewhat resembling beer foam.

One World Interactive

People around the globe have had just about enough of living in virtual worlds over the past year. Endless conference calls and the ubiquitous mobile phone screens have become our nemesis, from which...

Jeden svět dětem/Docs For Kids

Docs For Kids

One World never forgets about younger viewers. In the Docs for Kids category we introduce films that are made taking school-aged children into account. These are short, dubbed films that will allow school...