Online documentary: «The Final Bell» – Last Day of School

The Final Bell tells of life in a rural school that is about to go out of existence. After the instruction is received from the local authority that Mežvidi Primary School must close, the pupils continue to study, express themselves creatively and have fun, but with a sense of the inevitable fate that is approaching.

The Final Bell. Documentary, Latvia, 2014

Director: Alise Zariņa

They are few in number, with only one or two pupils in some classes, which means that the school is more like a large family than a teaching institution. When the younger generation leaves, this place, close to the border with Russia, deep in the Latgale region, will become vacant. But the closing of small schools follows a logical pattern, and it seems there is really no alternative.

This is an intimate story about a national-level issue. The story focuses on three sisters, girls from three generations, whose lives will change abruptly in the very near future. Through their everyday lives and little adventures, we try to understand what is behind the dry assertion that “the countryside is dying out”. And we can see some hope.

LSM marks the return of its English-subtitled series of documentary films entitled Latvian Code and selected in an annual contest held by Latvian Public Television (LTV). This is the third feature of six for the year.

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