You might ask why there is a photo of Fellini on top of this post about the St. Petersburg festival that starts tomorrow. The answer is simple, the festival wants to celebrate the 100 year anniversary of Federico Fellini. To send that message to its audience, simply, even if the main focus is on documentaries, as usual. Good choice!

The festival is super-active on facebook posting photos and texts on the films that are in the competition and out of competition. The best you can do is to check the fine website – https://message2man.com/en/.

Nevertheless the festival – like so many of us – is depending on the google 

 

translate, if you don’t master the Russian language. I copy-pasted this piece of a FB post today, I corrected very little:

”Looking forward to the beginning of XXX ′′ Message to Man “, but in the meantime, we decided to refresh our off-competition program. So, this year we will see 7 films as part of the Panorama program. DOC “, which includes the main documentaries of the season from recognized masters and documentaries-innovators, and 7 Russian premiers in the program ′′ Super reality Movie “, which collected the most anticipated game paintings.

Two of these programs are a kind of framing for what is the main thing at any film festival – competition programs. Let’s remind that there are three of them on′′ Message to Man ′′: International Competition, National Competition and Experimental Contest In Silico. Out-of-competition programs′′ Panorama. DOC ′′ and′′ Super reality Movie ′′ that provide a rather accurate representation of the state of modern author’s cinema in all its genre diversity and numerous shades of play and non-play. This is the environment in which there are competitions of the festival.

The third of the key non-competition programs ′′ Message to Man ′′ is dedicated to the great master Federico Fellini – in the year of the 100th anniversary of his birth. Here we will have the opportunity to see on the big screen such as ′′ City of Women “, ′′ Satirikon “, ′′ Kabiriya nights ′′ and ′′ Kazanova “. Also in the framework of the program there will be a Russian premiere of the documentary dedicated to the classics, ′′ Fellini of the Spirits′′ by Anselma Dell’Olio…”

I have always loved that ”film” and ”painting” in Russian language are close to each other, so often the google translation says paintings where it should be film. My simple comment: Wish that more films were like paintings!

The festival has a Dane as head of the international jury, Anders Østergaard, whose brilliant “Winter Journey” will be shown out of competition in the above mentioned section for masters and innovators. As are “The Cave” by Feras Fayyad, “Gunda” by local hero Victor Kossakovsky and “The Kingmaker” by Laureen Greenfield.

By the way, Østergaard was – with me – part of a small Danish delegation at the festival some years ago, where he showed “1989” to a young audience. Great success. And good friend, Lithuanian Audrius Stonys is Head of the National jury. Curious to know what they like. I suppose that the two will not be able to travel to the festival. Alas, me too, would have loved to be there in the beautiful city by the Neva.

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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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