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! This year’s lineup includes Marija Kavtaradzė’s Slow (Lithuania/Spain/Sweden, 2023), a moving film exploring the unconventional relationship that develops between a contemporary dancer and a sign language interpreter, which has been selected as Lithuania’s contender for Best International Feature Film at the 96th Academy Awards. The film will screen in-person only at Scandinavia House on November 11 at 8:15 PM. **A Film talk with director Marija Kavtaradzė follows the screening.**
In this poignant and visually captivating film, contemporary dancer Elena (Greta Grinevičiūtė) crosses paths with sign language interpreter Dovydas (Kęstutis Cicėnas), with whom she makes an immediate and effortless connection. As they slowly get to know one another, their relationship transitions from platonic to romantic, marked by an unwavering commitment to respecting each other’s unique needs. When Dovydas confides in Elena about being asexual, their journey becomes an exploration of sacrifice, compromise, and the boundaries of generosity within a relationship.
Kavtaradzė’s sophomore feature showcases her mastery of telling an intimate story, evoking dance, profound silence, and an unflinching portrayal of asexuality to underscore the limitations of physicality in expressing closeness, while Grinevičiūtė and Cicėnas deliver mesmerizing performances and undeniable chemistry. Kavtaradzė’s film weaves a delicate and peaceful narrative that firmly establishes her as a director with a distinct voice, challenging the ordinary with extraordinary storytelling. Winner at the Sundance Film Festival in the World Drama Category, it was also nominated for European Film Awards Grand Prize.