The opening night screening will be the film’s national premiere, and the director and creator will be in attendance.
"What is love? Something inevitable, written in the stars, or a reaction to the receptors, folds, and active centres of our brains? Eight years after her last film, Rocks in My Pockets, which was Latvia's entry for the Academy Awards, Baumane returns with a finely crafted exploration of her relationship with marriage and expectations of love in the final decade of the Soviet Union, and the period thereafter," says publicity material.
The film follows Zelma as she comes of age and starts encountering and understanding the intersections and tragedies between her sexuality and societal expectations and experiences unexpected moments of togetherness. Another character in the story is Zelma's Biology, who explains how a woman's journey of love is influenced by her inner world and how external stimuli have sabotaged or constructed her marriage project.
The animated film, which premiered at Tribeca Film festival this year and won the Special Jury Prize at the Annecy International Animation Film Festival, has been several years in the making. It has used crowdfunding, and is co-produced by the US, Luxembourg, and Latvia (Studio Lokomotīve).
It features English voice-overs by several well-known Hollywood actors including Matthew Modine and Cameron Monaghan from Shameless and Gotham, while Laura Čaupale, Guna Zariņa, Ģirts Ķesteris, Kaspars Znotiņš, Zane Daudziņa, Regīna Razuma, Madara Botmane, Juris Kalniņš, Katrīna Pasternaka, Edgars Samītis, Dainis Grūbe and others voice the Latvian version.
The RIGA IFF opening screening will take place on 13 October at 19:00. Tickets are available on the festival's website.
In its ninth year, the festival’s six competitions will offer a carefully selected programme of highlights from the world's most important film festivals, premieres of local films, and visionary works by auteurs in over a hundred in-person and online screenings throughout Latvia. The festival will also feature a programme of events in collaboration with Kyiv Critics' Week – a programme of contemporary Ukrainian cinema and an international discussion series on post-colonialism in media.
RIGA IFF receives support from the State Culture Capital Foundation, Riga City Council, the National Film Centre, and Creative Europe MEDIA.