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Man, History and Poetry. Dominant Tendencies in Lithuanian 21st-Century Documentary Films

Anna Mikonis-Railiene

DOI: https://doi.org/10.14746/i.2014.24.8

Abstract


This brief study presents the main streams in Lithuanian documentary film in our century. It discusses the most interesting work of three generations of Lithuanian directors, and the nature of their politics and narrative structure. Although film expression in the Lithuanian documentary has become more varied at the turn of this century in terms of subject matter, nonetheless, an attempt to return to the film aesthetics of the 1960s through the poetic fusion of the visual with documentary information from the outside world still dominates. The search for formal constructs, the painstaking composition of the visual aspect, narrative lyricism, and an authorial point of view are all typical traits of the contemporary documentary in Lithuania. One could argue that the history of the Lithuanian documentary film is one that is imbued with a poetical style that creatively interprets the world outside. It places at the very centre of the world out there humanity’s fate, and draws reflections on its condition in the contemporary world. Documentaries devoted to history and biography constitute a separate group that introduces variety and, consequently, broadens the field of subject matter featured in the Lithuanian documentary. In addition, one of the important changes that has taken place in Lithuanian films is the subject of the Holocaust in Lithuanian culture and interpreting reality from the perspective of the woman's “patient eye”.

 


Keywords


Lithuanian documentary film; the Henrikas Sablevicius School; history; humanism; poetic style

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References


“Anna Mikonis talks to Audrius Stonys”, Kwartalnik Filmowy 2007, no. 57–58, p. 267.

See A. Mikonis, “Ferment intelektualny w kinie litewskim” [Intellectual Ferment in Lithuanian Film], Kwartalnik Filmowy 2007, no. 57–58, p. 265.

B. Winston, Claiming the Real, British Film Institute, London 1995, pp. 40–47.

G. Arlickaitė, “Litwa: Odrodzenie kina dokumentalnego”, [Lithuania: The Revival of Documentary Film], in: Dokument po przełomie. Film dokumentalny lat 90. w Europie Środkowo-Wschodniej, ed. J. Głowa, Uniwersytet Jagielloński, Kraków 1999, p. 12.

B. Nichols, Introduction to Documentary, Indiana University Press, Bloomington 2001, p. 33.

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