International Competition

The Hamlet Syndrome

Elwira Niewiera, Piotr Rosołowski
Screening time  
27.03. / Monday, 22:00 - 00:00 Theatre 3  
30.03. / Thursday, 19:00 - 21:00 Theatre 5  

A few months prior to Russia’s full-scale invasion of Ukraine in 2022, five young women and men participate in a unique stage production that attempts to relate their war experiences to Shakespeare’s Hamlet. For each of them, the stage is a platform to express their grief and trauma through the famous question, “to be or not to be,” a dilemma that applies to their own lives. The protagonists fight against disappointment, powerlessness, and anger, trying to put their lives back in order while processing their painful past. The rehearsals for the play are combined with an intense glimpse into the characters’ lives: a powerful portrait of a generation coping with the trauma of war which, after Russia’s invasion, is now their present and future alike.


Elwira Niewiera

Elwira Niewiera is a Polish/German director and screenwriter of the well-known documentary films Domino Effect, The Prince and the Dybbuk and The Hamlet Syndrome. She is the winner of many international awards, among others Grand Prix-Semaine de la Critique for the Best Film at 75th Locarno Film Festival, Best Documentary on Cinema at the 74th Venice Film Festival, Polish Film Academy Award for Best Documentary, and Golden Dove at DOK Leipzig Film Festival. In her artistic work, she focuses primarily on political, social and cultural transformations in Eastern Europe. She is a member of the European Film Academy.


Piotr Rosołowski

Piotr Rosołowski is a Polish director, screenwriter, and cinematographer based in Berlin. He graduated from the Katowice Film School and was awarded an Academy of Media Arts scholarship in Cologne. Together with Elwira Niewiera he co-directed three successful feature documentaries: Domino Effect, The Prince and the Dybbuk and The Hamlet Syndrome. He also works as a director of photography and has shot many award-winning feature and short films.

General sponsor

Syndrom Hamleta

Poland, Germany
2022, 85'

Directed by:
Elwira Niewiera, Piotr Rosołowski

Screenplay by:
Elwira Niewiera, Piotr Rosołowski

Edited by:
Agata Cierniak

John Gürtler, Jan Miserre

Produced by:
Balapolis, Kundschafter Filmproduktion

Festivals & Awards:

Krakow FF: Golden Hobby-Horse (2022), Locarno FF: Grand Prix, SRG SRR Award, Boccalino d’oro (2022), Adelaide IFF: Best documentary film (2022), Trieste FF: The Audience Best documentary film, Osservatorio Balcani e Caucaso Transeuropa Award (2023)