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Directing Award: World Cinema Documentary

Exquisitely shot and bold in its metastorytelling approach, director Iryna Tsilyk’s documentary follows single mother Anna and her four children as they document their lives under siege in Ukraine.

Eldest daughter Mira dreams of becoming a cinematographer. As bombs descend on neighboring homes, the family construct, act in, and edit stylized scenes of dangerous predicaments they’ve lived to tell. Mira’s re-creations ratchet up the drama, using local soldiers, tanks, and even her own grandmother to tell terrifying tales of survival. Meanwhile, Iryna quietly captures their more quotidian moments during their shoots and in between takes—scenes that include Mira’s siblings squabbling over line readings, cozy dinners by the fire, and Anna’s compassionate gaze as she watches Mira apply to film school.

Eventually, the two projects fuse into a single vision that gorgeously encapsulates the extremes of war, both its explosive trauma and its mundane peripheral existence in everyday life. With miraculous insight, The Earth Is Blue as an Orange observes a family—and a filmmaker—cope with war using their cameras, working in tandem to create meaning out of a meaningless conflict.

YEAR 2020

CATEGORY World Cinema Documentary Competition

COUNTRY Ukraine/Lithuania

RUN TIME 74 min

LANGUAGE Russian/Ukrainian

SUBTITLES Yes with English subtitles


WEBSITE https://www.catndocs.com

EMAIL cat@catndocs.com


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Artist Bio

Iryna Tsilyk

Iryna Tsilyk (born in 1982 in Kyiv) is a Ukrainian filmmaker and writer and is the author and director of several short fiction and documentary films. The Earth Is Blue as an Orange is her debut feature-length documentary. Moreover, Tsilyk is the author of eight books published in Ukraine (which include poetry, prose, and children’s books).