OPENING NIGHT FILM: REMEMBER TO BLINK — NEW YORK BALTIC FILM FESTIVAL
November 8—6:30 pm – 9:00 pm
The 6th Annual New York Baltic Film Festival (NYBFF) presented by Scandinavia House: The Nordic Center in America returns this November with the best new films from the Baltic region! In our Opening Night Celebration on November 8, see the North American Premiere of Remember to Blink, Austėja Urbaitė’s captivating drama exploring cultural conflicts amid the intricacies of human behavior.
Having adopted two Lithuanian children, French couple Leon (Arthur Igual) and Jacqueline (Anne Azoulay), who live in a beautiful house in the French mountains, enlist young Lithuanian student Gabriele (Dovile Kundrotaite) to serve as an interpreter and nanny. When the children arrive, however, their idyllic façade of their new family arrangement gives way to underlying tensions and cultural clashes — the couple might not be familiar with their adopted children’s origins, leading to conflicts and misunderstandings, and unearthing the complexities of parenthood and culture.
Director Austėja Urbaitė’s debut is a thought-provoking exploration of the subtle dynamics of what it means to become a family. The film skillfully unveils the characters’ multifaceted and irrational traits, weaving a tapestry of relationships that question the boundaries of culture and identity, and exposes a form of “Neo-colonialism” reflecting broader cultural conflicts. Urbaitė deftly employs unpredictability of her characters with nuanced performances to maintain viewer engagement, while cinematographer Julius Sičiūnas juxtaposes the serene natural surroundings with the mounting tension within the confined household.