Bergman, Ai Weiwei and Zafranović in the Focus of Biography Dox!


One of the official categories of the 10th edition of ZagrebDox, Biography Dox, this year presents portrayals of a few impressive, eccentric and talented celebrities who marked the past decades in different forms of artistic expression.

In the extraordinary selection Biography Dox, in the company of some of the most important filmmakers of today, we will go on a pilgrimage to the mystic and sacred film location where the great Ingmar Bergman spent the final years of his life. The documentary portrayal Cutie and the Boxer presents us with a long and very complex symbiosis of art and love. Next to these, we will present one outstanding portrayal – the extremely profound and politically relevant view of the most famous Chinese artist of today – Ai Weiwei – The False Case. The selection also includes a local biographic gemstone, Occupation, the 27th Picture, directed by Pavo Marinković, dealing with the author of one of the most controversial Croatian films ever.

In the mid-1960s Swedish director Ingmar Bergman moved in a house on a remote Fårö island in the middle of the Baltic Sea. The exact location of the house has always been a mystery; Bergman lived and worked there until his death in 2007. The documentary Trespassing Bergman, directed by Hynek Pallas and Jane Magnusson, takes the audience to Bergman’s house in the company of renowned filmmakers such as Alejandro González Iñárritu, Claire Denis and Michael Haneke. The official trailer is available here.

This year’s Oscar nominee in the documentary film category, Cutie and the Boxer, is an extraordinary portrayal of art, partnership and 40 years of love between Ushio and Noriko Shinohara, eccentric Japanese artists who met and got married in New York in the early 1970s. Ushio’s sculptures brought him fame, but rarely money, while Noriko – who gave up art to be his assistant – finally goes out of her husband’s shadow and makes drawings that catch the public’s eye but also cause her husband’s jealousy. Emerging director Zachary Heinzerling was awarded for directing at the last edition of Sundance, and the film won the second audience prize at Tribeca Film Festival. Trailer is available on this link.

In the recent years, conceptual artist Ai Weiwei has become a significant personality in the fight against the Chinese government, which resulted in his kidnapping in 2011, when he spent three months in solitary confinement at an unknown location. Ai Weiwei – The Fake Case by Andreas Johnsen follows the artist after his return home. This is a film about a thrilling game with the government that keeps making up new accusations against this radical and inspiring Chinese artist. However, supported by his devotees, letters and donations, Ai Weiwei does not give up and continues his fight believing that the time of change has finally arrived in China. More info is available on the official website.

Occupation in 26 Pictures by Lordan Zafranović from 1978 is still considered one of the most controversial Croatian films. This successful war film, shown in competition in Cannes in 1979, has completely determined the director’s path in life; he opted for voluntary exile after a series of accusations because of the criticism of the then regime. Occupation, the 27th Picture, a documentary film by Pavo Marinković documenting Zafranović’s life story, depicts the ups, downs and compromises he made to survive as an artist in the communist times, but also the missed chances and wrong judgments that later made it impossible for him to adapt himself.