Agniia Galdanova: Queendom

I was not in the jury of the CPH:DOX this year but I agree totally with the motivation to give the film an award:

Urgent and Political, this award goes to a powerful and intimate coming of age story about an Outsider within her family and her country. With exquisite gentleness and outstanding visual beauty, the film quietly builds upon itself, ultimately crescending into a loud and expressive rebellion and rallying cry against a brutal regime and its attempts to violently control and intimidate both young and old generations. In this present moment, it’s impossible not to recognize the bravery of both the protagonist and the filmmaker. This film will remain a breathtaking and striking reminder of arts role in speaking truth to power.”

… and it is a heartbreaking story to follow Gena Marvin’s unsuccessful attempt to reconcile with the grandparents, who live 8 hours flight away from Moscow, in Magadan, where Gena is born. The grandfather wants him to have an education and when he is kicked out of a make up school because he was present at a demonstration for Navalnyj, grandfather stresses that Gena (Gennadiy) should at least earn some money on his performing art in the streets, wearing high heels and amazing costumes. The film includes small video performances where you can see the artistic skills of Gena Marvin. At the end we see him in Paris calling grandma and grandfather, excellent dramaturgical build of a strong and touching documentary about the right denied to be different.

USA, France, 2022, 98 mins.

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Tue Steen Müller
Tue Steen Müller

Müller, Tue Steen
Documentary Consultant and Critic, DENMARK

Worked with documentary films for more than 20 years at the Danish Film Board, as press officer, festival representative and film consultant/commissioner. Co-founder of Balticum Film and TV Festival, Filmkontakt Nord, Documentary of the EU and EDN (European Documentary Network).
Awards: 2004 the Danish Roos Prize for his contribution to the Danish and European documentary culture. 2006 an award for promoting Portuguese documentaries. 2014 he received the EDN Award “for an outstanding contribution to the development of the European documentary culture”. 2016 The Cross of the Knight of the Order for Merits to Lithuania. 2019 a Big Stamp at the 15th edition of ZagrebDox. 2021 receipt of the highest state decoration, Order of the Three Stars, Fourth Class, for the significant contribution to the development and promotion of Latvian documentary cinema outside Latvia. In 2022 he received an honorary award at DocsBarcelona’s 25th edition having served as organizer and programmer since the start of the festival.
From 1996 until 2005 he was the first director of EDN (European Documentary Network). From 2006 a freelance consultant and teacher in workshops like Ex Oriente, DocsBarcelona, Archidoc, Documentary Campus, Storydoc, Baltic Sea Forum, Black Sea DocStories, Caucadoc, CinéDOC Tbilisi, Docudays Kiev, Dealing With the Past Sarajevo FF as well as programme consultant for the festivals Magnificent7 in Belgrade, DOCSBarcelona, Verzio Budapest, Message2Man in St. Petersburg and DOKLeipzig. Teaches at the Zelig Documentary School in Bolzano Italy.

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