From Friday to Saturday, We’re Watching Sweat, Pari and Mare

This year’s online edition of the 18th ZFF is slowly coming to a close, and between Friday and Saturday you have the chance to see two notable debut films: Sweat by Polish director Magnus von Horn and Pari by Iranian-Greek director Siamak Etemadi. The Together Again program features Mare by director Andrea Štaka, while in the Great 5 program we’ll see the French representative, By Your Side by Audrey Estrougo. All the films will be available from Friday, November 13, 6 PM to Saturday, November 14, 6 PM on platform, except for the films from Checkers which are available at

The main feature film program brings the Croatian premiere of Sweat which follows three days in the life of a fitness influencer Sylwia whose energetic and dedicated public persona is bursting with positivity. She’s her own creation. But in the privacy of her home, her bubbly personality turns into a cold remoteness and unveils an empty void beneath the carefully managed façade. In the main program, we also have Pari, a story about a Muslim from Iran’s for her son who goes missing while studying in Greece. Navigating the darkest corners of Athens, an alien and new world for her, Pari is forced to discard layers of her old identity, even the ones which shaped her as a model and obedient wife. The film premiered at Berlinale and director Siamak Etemadi was inspired by a poem by Persian poet Rumi.

In the Together Again program, don’t miss Mare, a film about a caring mother and wife, but also a good-looking cool woman in her forties who yearns for life and adventure. Director Andrea Štaka addressed the topics of extra-marital sexuality deftly dissecting the layers of female identity in a small Croatian town. The fantastic Marija Škaričić received the Heart of Sarajevo Award for her role. In the Great 5 program we’ll be watching the French representative, By Your Side. Manu (Lucie Debay, The Barefoot Emperor – ZFF 2019) returns home for a few days to celebrate her mother’s birthday. But the place where she spent her childhood now seems haunted by ghosts of the past. While a wave of memories floods her, Manu must deal with her difficult sister who is haunted by her own demons and whose psychological instability affected all family relationships.

In the competition program of domestic short films, Checkers, from Friday we’ll have Sultriness, a film by Petar Vukičević. And the international short film competition continues with a Bulgarian film by director Kristina Spasovska, Motherland, and Serbian Way Back by Aleksandar Adžić.

The KinoKino festival for children brings new film hits for our youngest audience every day. From Friday to Saturday, we’ll have two award-winning films for children: H is for Happiness, an adaptation of Barry Jonsberg’s bestseller about a twelve-year-old girl who tries to bring joy back into her family after a tragic loss, and Sune – Best Man, an adventure comedy based on the mega-popular children’s books by Anders Jacobsson and Sören Olsson about a clever boy Sune and his goofy family.

On Friday, Industry, the educational platform for film professionals, brings us the panel about the crisis caused by the pandemic, How Can Institutions and Good Case Studies Help European Cinema During COVID-19 Crisis?, where we will discuss about the possibilities and measures institutions can take to protect producers and cinemas in this unfortunate period. The panel, starting at 1 PM, will be available on the festival page,, and on the Facebook page, @zagrebfilmfestival.