One World 2020 – Not till a January

Display Schedule

Code Completion Credits Range Language Instruction Semester
303MJSNU Z 1 6S English, Czech summer

Subject guarantor


Name of lecturer(s)


Learning outcomes of the course unit

To introduce students to contemporary foreign documentary productions through the Jedan Svet festival/

Mode of study

Debate, screenings

Prerequisites and co-requisites


Course contents

Prague, 19 February 2020

Climate change and its impacts on the local landscape – that is the subject that we have decided to focus on at this year’s One World film festival under the motto of “Not till a hot January.” The festival has looked at environmental issues since nearly the very beginning, and over the past three years films on this subject have had their own category, UnEarthed. This year, it is our main thematic category. In addition, all virtual reality documentaries will be on the subject of nature and the environment, supplemented by a special nature installation. “By combining creative documentaries, accompanying events, and VR projects, we hope to provide a broad overview of the climate crisis – compared to other festivals that also address this subject, the diverse range of perspectives is truly unique. For instance, you can attend a workshop on fermenting seasonal vegetables, see a film on environmental racism (a subject almost nobody talks about in our country), explore nature in a dead forest at DOX, or immerse yourself in an emotional VR environment,” says the festival’s programming director Ondřej Moravec. The 22nd edition of the One World festival takes place from 5 to 14 March in Prague, after which it will travel to 35 other cities throughout the Czech Republic.

On Weds. 4.3.2020, 19:00 - 20:30, in FAMU classroom 1, will be a debate with Oleh Sencov in Russian with simultaneous translation into Czech and English.

A critic of the Russian authoritarian regime and political prisoner, Mr. Sencov will devote the debate to filmmaking. A discussion will take place not only about films Sencov has made before imprisonment in 2014 but also about how from prison in Siberia he collaborated with colleagues on additional projects. „Proces“ will be one of the documentaries selected which Askold Kurov shot about Sencov's 5 year prison sentence, but also the new film „Number“ by the directorial team of Oleh Sencov and Achtem Seitablajev, which premiered at this years Berlinale.

Ukrainian director, Oleh Sencov, was in Sept. 2019 in an international exchange of prisoners released from prison in the prison colony Ledni Medved in the north of Russia, where he was sentenced to 20 years maximum security for alleged terrorism. From the beginning he publically denounced Russia's annex of the Crimea. The Russian secret police arrested him in 2014 and a year later he was sentenced foran arson attack and preparations for a terrorist act on the Ukrainian peninsula. He spent 5 years behind bars. He went on hunger strike from May til October or 2018. He demanded liberation of all Ukrainian political prisoners in Russian jails. His worsening health was brought to public awarenetss by artists and political representatives around the world. His immediate release from prison in 2014 was called for by the European Film Academy. „We know that whenever artists begin to be repressed by a political regime, that regime becomes a dictatorship,“ stated Agnieszka Holland, President of the Academy of European Film Awards at that time. „The hunting of people for political reasons cannot be tolerated. (The Academy) wishes to emphasize its strong belief that freedom of speech is an important and fundamental pillar of every democratic society.“ At the end of November, 2019, Sencov received at the European Parliament in Strasbourg the Sacharov Award for Freedom of Thought. This was awarded a year earlier when he was not able to personally receive it. When accepting the award, the director announced: „I don't trust Putin. I ask you not to believe him. He will disappoint you.“

From Friday to Sunday will be film screenings from the One World festival for the jury at the FAMU Screening room. Students and instructors are welcome. Admission is free:

Friday 6.3. FAMU Screening room

10:00-11:00 Czechs are Excellent Mushroom Pickers (director. Apolena Rychlíková, 2020, 54´) -

How incomprehensible would a higher intelligence find the plodding human species and the way it treats the Earth? And do Czechs differ in the way they care for nature?

This environmental essay, stylised as a dialogue between two members of a higher intelligence, observes life on Earth, specifically a small area of central Europe. Czechs aren’t exactly perfect when it comes to caring for nature. The mysterious beings cannot understand how, in the name of business and the profit of a few successful entrepreneurs, humans have recklessly disturbed nature’s inherent cycle. The filmmakers look at the issue of the collapsing environment with detachment and humour, but they cannot avoid the fact that it is a serious issue that must be talked about right away and, more importantly, dealt with – unless we want to become fossils for future alien visitors to speculate over.

11:15 - 12:40 Town of Glory (director: Dmitry Bogoluybov, 2019, 82')

The legacy of the Great Patriotic War still resounds loudly in Russia. In today’s aggressive politics, Putin’s crew is skilfully using this in order to gain support in a small town that came to symbolise the victory over fascism.

Nothing interesting happens in the small town of Yelnya on Russia’s western edge. The locals are leaving en masse and those who stay have few joys in life. One is the victory over fascism. At the start of the war Stalin allowed the town be symbolically freed – at the cost of enormous loss of life – so as to inspire hope in his people and strengthen the spirit of heroism. Emerging documentarist Dmitry Bogolubov’s personally tinged film tracks two local patriots and their families for three years. Teen-age Masha attends nationalist meetings, singing the praises of long-dead fallen heroes, ageing Sergei digs up their bones and secretly dreams of a change in the situation. Through them the film shows how the unhealed wartime trauma infiltrates generations, forming the social life of ordinary Russians and, with the help of political propaganda, gradually changes into hate towards the current “fascist” West.

Saturday, 7.3. FAMU screening room

10:00 - 11:20, Doggy Love (r. Linda Kallistová Jablonská, 2020, 80´) -

1,200 kilometres of snowy landscape to be covered in 12 days. These are the conditions for the Finnmarksløpet sled dog race and Czech husky breeder Jana Henychová is set to participate again.

In summer, Jana organises children’s dog camps for children to earn enough to enable her to move 1,500 kilometres north, from the Jizera Mountains to wintery Sweden. There, with her four-legged teammates, she trains for three months, often in temperatures far below zero, to prepare for an even greater challenge: finishing a harsh long-distance race that is becoming increasingly professional year by year, setting a high bar for amateurs like Jana. Can Jana keep up with the others in this demanding male-dominated sport? Although shots of the captivating Northern landscape prevail, the film focuses mainly on the protagonist and her lifestyle. Outspoken Jana doesn’t hesitate to use robust language, making her comments genuine – whether they relate to what is happening around her or reveal her view of life, which is now inseparably linked to a barking dog pack.

11:30 - 12:50 Two Roads (r. Radovan Síbrt, 2019, 80´) -

The Tap Tap’s musicians and singers are all from Jedlička’s Institute – people living with various diagnoses as well as diverse personalities and original humour.

Láďa is always joking. Petr has his own incomprehensible dictionary. Jana seeks a partner via a dating service. They are linked through their joy in music and their involvement in the group founded more than 20 years ago by bandmaster Šimon Ornest. Strictly, almost despotically, without pity but with great energy and understanding, he not only leads his musicians to a place on the music scene but is also their support and friend. Director Radovan Síbrt’s film offers a glimpse into the lives of The Tap Tap’s members and makes it possible to share their joys, successes, failures, and also painful farewells.

13:00 - 14:45, War of Art (r. Tommy Gulliksen, 2019, 102´) -

Do Europeans have a way to artistically enrich North Koreans? And vice versa? The film presents a clash of two views of art and its different roles in society.

In London, computer sensors record the movement of snails, whose shifting composes music. Meanwhile, on the other side of the world, a painter in North Korea creates a socialist realist portrait of his leader. Art manifests itself in two such utterly different ways. Norwegian director Tommy Gulliksen decided to bring these two worlds together, and sets out for Pyongyang with a group of artists. He believes that the totalitarian regime can be convinced of the benefits of contact with the Western style, and that bored European art consumers will find new inspiration by encountering a different mentality. But the first step to understanding each other is not enough, and the film illustrates how much people growing up in different environments can differ. Will the whole thing end in merely a fun but ephemeral meeting?

15-16:20, Midnight Family (r. Luke Lorentzen, 2019, 80´) -

The desperate lack of state ambulances in Mexico City has opened the door for private individuals to provide their own emergency transport for patients. When saving lives they find themselves on the fringes of the law and existential distress.

Mexico City's more than nine million inhabitants are served by less than 45 official ambulances. Every night, Fernando Ochoa and his sons set out on the busy streets of the city with their own ambulance to offer first aid to the hospital for all those in need. Their work is filled with tense waiting and dramatic chases through the city centre, in which they race with competitors, the police or precious time. This stunning documentary by a 27-year-old director offers a probe into a dysfunctional healthcare system. But it is primarily a portrait of a family of modern good Samaritans surviving in a grey zone of the economy, a family whose members, despite a constant lack of money, look out for each other.

Sunday, 8.3. FAMU screening room

11-12:50, Nomad Meets the City (r. Anji Sauvé Clubb, 2020, 80´) -

Currently Mongolia’s capital has 1.5 million inhabitants - half the population of the country. 50-year Tumurbaatar is only one of many coming to the city to fulfil their dreams of a better life.

The promise of higher wages , which they could never earn as nomadic livestock herders, lures people from rural areas to Ulaanbaatar. The film’s protagonist leaves his livelihood in the steppes and works as a garbage truck driver. He has left his wife Tungaa behind, as well as his son Bilguun, who’s to take over the family’s herd after his father. He lives in the city with his gifted student daughter Udvaal, in order to provide her with access to higher education. But city life and his sporadic visits home take their toll on Tumurbaatar‘s marriage and relationship with his children. Thanks to the thoughtfully led camera, we join the life of one family, caught just when economic pressure forces people to abandon their traditions with visions of a better future for themselves and their children.

Additional film screenings (annotations and screening times can be found at

Recommended or required reading

Assessment methods and criteria

100% attendance at debates with Oleh Sencov and evidence of attendance to at least 3 Jeden Svet festival screenings (by ticket stub or signature on the attendance list)


It is strongly requested that you arrive on time for the screening - entrance into the cinema after the start of the film disturbs others - Thank you!

Lecturer: Oleh Sencov (sponsor Alice Růžičková)

Time and place: Weds, 4. 3. 19:00-20:30, classroom U1 and Friday-Sunday, 6-8. 3. 10:00-13:00, FAMU screening room or attendance at minimum 3 screenings at the Jeden Svet Festival (5-14. 3. 2020)

Credit /1 for 100% attendance at debates with Oleh Sencov + evidence of attendance at 3 screenings (purchased ticked stub or signature on the attendance list in the FAMU screening room)

Capacity: 50

Elective for: FAMU

Instruction languages: English and Czech

Further information

This course is an elective for all AMU students

Schedule for winter semester 2019/2020:

The schedule has not yet been prepared

Schedule for summer semester 2019/2020:

Date Day Time Tutor Location Notes No. of paralel
04.03.2020 19:00–20:30 Room No. 1
Lažanský palác
06.03.2020 10:00–12:40 Projection Room
Lažanský palác
07.03.2020 10:00–16:20 Projection Room
Lažanský palác
08.03.2020 11:00–12:50 Projection Room
Lažanský palác

The subject is a part of the following study plans