Ukraine documentaries to be among highlights of 25th One World

'Overcoming the Darkness'

The organisers of the One World Festival have just revealed plans for its 25th edition, three weeks before it kicks off in Prague. This year the event will offer 75 feature-length human rights documentaries, including a number focused on Ukraine. I spoke to festival director Ondřej Kamenický.

“The theme of the festival this year is The Cost of Safety.

“Because we feel there is quite an insecure situation, not just in the Czech Republic, but all around the world.

“There are many crises, one after the other, from the war in Ukraine to the crisis with energy and the social-political crisis.

“So we felt it was important to talk about this.”

What will be you opening film at this year’s edition?

“The opening film is the Ukrainian film Overcoming the Darkness, which is about the first days and weeks of the conflict, from last year.

“It’s about the daily lives of Ukrainian people, but of course how they live with the struggle with the Russian Army, in the east of the country.”

Do you have many films from the Ukraine conflict? Or is it too soon for films to have been produced already?

“Yes, we have six films from Ukraine this year. One of them is the new film by Vitaly Mansky, Eastern Front.

'Beyond Revolution – Fighting for Democracy' | Photo: Festival One World

“But we are also screening Beyond Revolution – Fighting for Democracy, which is about young politicians who came to politics at the time of the Maidan revolution.

“This film should give the audience the context of what happened before the war in Ukraine.”

Always at One World you have very interesting guests. Who are some of the most notable this year?

“One of the most notable guests will be Ale Duarte, who will take part in a debate about how growing up in a militarised, intense society such as today’s Israel affects a person.”

What about Czech films?

BLIX NOT BOMBS | Photo: Festival One World

“Yes, we have a Czech competition, where there are 10 films.

“I think one of the highlights of this year’s competition is the new film Blix Not Bombs by Greta Stocklassa.

“It’s about Hans Blix, the former head of the UN Security Council’s weapons inspectors

“He was one of the key figures more than 20 years ago when he was searching for weapons of mass destruction in Iraq, after 9/11.”

One World has been here for 25 years now. What does it mean for you and the other organisers to be reaching this milestone?

“For us it’s a huge responsibility.

“Because we feel that the topics we bring by One World each year are not very well covered by the media.

“So we feel that it’s necessary to talk about human rights and environmental, social and political topics much more.

“This is especially true at this time when there is one crisis after another and especially in an edition when the main topic is The Cost of Safety.”