Filmmaker Victor Kossakovsky

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    ‘Don’t film if you can live without filming.’ That’s the first of the 10 rules that Victor Kossakovsky (Leningrad, 1961) drew up for fellow filmmakers at IDFA’s request. His final rule? ‘Don't follow my rules. Find your own rules. There is always something that only you can film and nobody else.’

    Kossakovsky is a prime example of a filmmaker who finds his own rules. He is the author of a very original oeuvre, which expresses a great love for humanity. Kossakovsky first visited IDFA in 1993 with Belovy, winning both the award for best long documentary and the Audience Award. In 1998 he won the Special Jury Prize with Pavel and Lyalya (a Jerusalem Romance). In 2006 he presented his ten rules in a Masterclass. In 2012 he was guest of honor of the festival. In addition, IDFA presented a retrospective, including Tishe! (2002), for which he spent an entire year filming road works from the window of his Saint Petersburg home, Svyato (2005), about his two-year-old son seeing his reflection for the first time, and ¡Vivan las antipodas! (2011), a wonderful documentary about 'counterparts': people literally on opposite sides of the globe.

    Watch online:

    Masterclass by Victor Kossakovsky (IDFA 2012)

    Items in this selection

    Habitat

    • Victor Semeniuk
    • 1986

      This fascinating 1986 collage illustrates how the hardships of a Russian landscape don’t stop humans from making their home there.

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      Losev

      • Victor Kossakovsky
      • 1989

        Kossakovsky's first film is a symbolic tribute to the Russian philosopher and religious thinker Alexey Fedorovich Losev (1893-1988), who inspired him as a filmmaker.

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        The Other Day

        • Victor Kossakovsky
        • 1991

          On the day Leningrad changed its name back to Saint Petersburg in 1991, Viktor Kossakovsky stumbled upon a dead body lying in the streets of his hometown.

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          Belovy

          • Victor Kossakovsky
          • 1993

            This portrait of Russian village life is at once tender and harsh.

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            Pavel and Lyalya (a Jerusalem Romance)

            • Victor Kossakovsky
            • 1998

              Poetic portrait of an elderly woman and her terminally ill man, both filmmaker

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              I Loved You

              • Victor Kossakovsky
              • 2000

                A trilogy of stories about love and relationships: the last days of an older couple, two young lovers getting married, and volatile, playful infatuations among toddlers.

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                Kindergarten

                • Victor Kossakovsky
                • 2000

                  Toddlers in a Russian playgroup take their first cautious steps in love.

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                  Tishe!

                  • Victor Kossakovsky
                  • 2002

                    From his window, Victor Kossakovsky filmed the endless roadwork on a St. Petersburg street over the course of a year.

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                    Svyato

                    • Victor Kossakovsky
                    • 2005

                      Available in Benelux only: Victor Kossakovsky’s two-year-old son Svyato sees his own reflection for the first time.

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                      ¡ Vivan las antipodas!

                      • Victor Kossakovsky
                      • 2011

                        A playful portrait of four pairs of geographical antipodes: Argentina and China, Spain and New Zealand, Hawaii and Botswana, and Russia and Chile.

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                        Focus Forward: DisplAir

                        • Victor Kossakovsky
                        • 2012

                          Meet Maxim, the young inventor of a truly jaw-dropping new technology with limitless applications that will eliminate the need for screens and monitors - and all manner of electronic junk.

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                          Lullaby

                          • Victor Kossakovsky
                          • 2012

                            Some homeless men lay sleeping on the floor of a bank vestibule. If you want to use the ATM, you'll have to step right over them or find somewhere else.

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                            Demonstration

                            • Victor Kossakovsky, 32 Students
                            • 2013

                              A "film ballet" in which footage of violent protests in Barcelona in March 2012 enters into a special relationship with classical music.

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                              Varicella

                              • Victor Kossakovsky
                              • 2015

                                An affectionate portrait of two young sisters studying ballet in Saint Petersburg and preparing for an important assessment.

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