FNE at Varna Golden Rose FF: Fish Cry Freedom

By Pavlina Jeleva

    The low-budget 61-minute HD feature film Fish Cry Freedom is a feature debut from an Austrian film director and cultural anthropologist living in Munich, Wilma Kiener. Gergana Kofardzhieva and Itzko Finci star as two aging theatre actors preparing for a film in a desolate Sofia family kitchen.

    {mosimage}The film, with its intimate and slightly retro improvisations as the actors read their lines, was shot in ten days with the assistance of friends and family. Kiener describes it as a "film-within-a-film" and a love story about an elderly widow going to the graveyard on All Saints Day and almost falling in love.The press deemed the film a wonderful piece of magic realism.

    "Fish Cry Freedom is a film-promenade under the rainbow, where actors are free to improvise while drinking coffee or singing a sonnet by Shakespeare. It is a warm tale about old age, in which no one is in a hurry and inhales the scent of memories," said Kofardzhieva,the wife of one of the respected Bulgarian theater director Luben Groys, who died in 1982. She retired from acting for nearly 20 years, returning to the screen in the role of a funny aunt with a few cats in the 2010 Bulgarian film Hunting Down Small Predators.

    Kiener said the title of the film occurred to her suddenly during a walk at the fish market in Marseille, concluding that Fish Cry Freedom is a film about "Love and Marseille set in Sofia on All Saints Day."

    Before coming to Bulgaria, Kiener produced and directed several feature length theatrical documentaries which have been shown at festivals worldwide, including Who is Highlife?, A Dream of Kabul, Three Lives Friderike, Lotte and Stefan Zweig. Fish

    Production credits

    Script: Wilma Kiener

    Director: Wilma Kiener

    DoP: Dieter Matzka, Wilma Kiener

    Music: Mihaly Tabanyl

    Cast: Gergana Kofardzhieva, Itzko Finci, Marina Prashanova, Georgeta Chakarova, Ani Petrova, Gani Babinova, Rumi Marton, Judith Mensa, Milen Groys



    Shipka Film (BG)

    Lampion Film (A)

    Matzka-Kiener - Filmproduktion (D)


    Wilma Kiener

    phone +49 8851 297056

    mob. + 49 173 8611811

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