10th Young Horizons Film Festival Overview

fot. Michał Mroczkowski

20 cities, over 160 titles in 13 thematic sections, unforgettable moments filled with movie magic, laughter and emotions. This is how we can sum up the 10th anniversary edition of the Young Horizons IFF – a one of a kind celebration of the young audiences and the adolescent cinephiles, that took place from September 30th to October 8th last year across Poland. A vast majority of movies (over 106) have found its way to the online version of the festival that began on October 10th and thanks to it, our audiences had access to a variety of quality films on Young Horizons VOD for almost a month.

The 10th edition was a special one not only because of the jubilee but also because it was the first time we’ve worked under our new banner – the Young Horizons. That new name and the brand image changes that followed were combined by us with expanding the offer for older audiences, thanks to which both young and teenage viewers could have found a unique film offer for themselves.

fot. Wojciech Chrubasik

What did we present?

The program consisted of 13 sections diverse in themes and genres that consisted of animated and live action movies and also documentaries from all over the world. The festival opened with an animated adventure movie “Argonuts” (dir. by David Alaux; France 2022) and the older audiences were welcomed by the much anticipated Ghibli Studios production that’s been dubbed a masterpiece – “The Boy and the Heron” (dir. by Hayao Miyazaki; Japan 2023).

As part of the Main Competition, we’ve presented 10 most interesting Polish and international productions, eight of which had their Polish premiere during our film festival. As usual, there were also entries in the Documentary Competition and the Discoveries’ Competition. The latter’s jury, for the first time in the Festival’s history, consisted of young cinephiles. As is the case every year, we’ve taken our audiences on a film journey to a chosen country.

This time, in the Bonjour cinéma! – French Animation section, we took off to France. Films from Norway and Island, combining fun with the current and important topics, were presented in the Between the Fjords section. Having the adults accompanying the young audience in mind we’ve also prepared the New Horizons section – a selection of five special titles from last year’s New Horizons IFF program.

fot. Wojciech Chrubasik

The awarded movies

During the closing gala in Kinoteka, the jury announced the winners of all categories. The creators of the awarded films were given statuettes made by the Warsaw-based ceramic studio FENEK.
By the viewers’ decision, the best movie of the Main Competition of the 10th IFF Young Horizons was School of Magical Animals 2 (dir. Sven Unterwaldt Jr.; Germany 2022). The second place went to a Polish title: The Dog who Travelled by Train (dir. Magdalena Nieć; Poland 2023). The last on the podium was Who Are You, Mamma Moo? (dir. Chrisitan Ryltenius; Sweden 2023).
For the second time in the festival’s history, a special prize was granted by the Association of Authors ZAiKS for the best Polish full-length film for young audiences. The jury members: Agnieszka Dziedzic, Piotr Szczepanowicz, Marek Piestrak awarded the film The Dog who Travelled by Train (dir. Magdalena Nieć; Poland 2023).

See how we spent those 9 days

The Jury of the Main Competition, formed by: Urszula Urzędowska, Kristoffer Rus, Anna Blaszczyk awarded the film Nina and the Hedgehog’s Secret (dir. Alain Gagnol, Jean-Loup Felicioli; France 2023). The same title was given Quality Mark from the Film Educators Team.

ZEF’s special mention went to the film Sea Sparkle (dir. Domien Huyghe; Belgium, The Netherlands 2023) which was also awarded by the ECFA (European Children’s Film Association) jury comprising: Markéta Pášmová, Janne Vierth, Kärt Väinola, that was judging the films in the Main Competition.

fot. Wojciech Chrubasik

In the Discoveries’ Competition, a jury composed of: Katarzyna Kasia, Kuba Mikurda, Katarzyna Borowiecka, awarded the film Scrapper (dir. Charlotte Regan; UK 2023). A special mention went to the animation Chicken for Linda! (directed by Chiara Malta, Sébastien Laudenbach; France, Italy 2023).

During last year’s edition, for the very first time, the Young Horizons Jury, consisting of: Maja Kurowska, Juliusz Korczyński, Irena Goldstein, Olga Żornaczuk, Krysia Zagroba-Kocewiak had a chance to choose their favorite movies. The award went to the animation Robot Dreams (directed by Pablo Berger; Spain, France 2023).
The Young Horizons Jury also gave a special mention to the film Nezouh (dir. Soudade Kaadan; France, UK, Syria 2022).

The Documentary Competition’s jury made up of: Iwona Zabielska-Stadnik, Piotr Stasik, Iga Kazimierczyk awarded the short film The Light (dir. Sarah Lederman; Belgium 2022).

fot. Michał Mroczkowski

Traditionally, the film screenings were accompanied by numerous meetings with the filmmakers and actors, films with live music, workshops stimulating creativity and special films chosen by educators and other experts. For the first time in the festival’s history, our viewers had the opportunity to play in a digital playground as part of the MediaLab in the National Ethnographic Museum in Warsaw. Thanks to the VR, it allowed them to not only watch movies but also to become their main characters, to create their own animations, and to try their strength in making special effects.

See how we played in MediaLab and during artistic workshops

fot. Wojciech Chrubasik

Młode Horyzonty vod!

Young Horizons at home! A unique offer for young audiences on the NHvod platform.

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