Winner of five major awards, including the Golden Calf at the Netherlands Film Festival and the Rembrandt award for Best Film, Little Sister is an audacious film that solidified Robert Jan Westdijk as a major talent. Westdijk masterfully uses a home video aesthetic to create a quietly terrifying, yet often funny, depiction of a brother-sister relationship troubled by a deep, buried secret. On her 20th birthday, brother Martijn (Romijn Conen) suddenly reunites with his sister, Daantje (Kim van Kooten). With video camera in hand, he tapes her every move, subsequently sabotaging her relationship with her close friends. Little Sister is a perfect example of intimate cinema, where the filmmaking style and the content of the story work together to give us an emotionally real and visually satisfying experience. In Dutch with English subtitles.

Robert Jan Westdijk---Netherlands---1996---91 mins.


One of the most powerful documentaries ever made, Oratorio for Prague contains the only footage from the Soviet-led invasion of Prague in 1968. Czech New Wave filmmaker Jan Nemec (A Report on the Party and the Guests) began filming with the intention to document Prague Spring, a celebration of the newfound liberalization of Czechoslovakia, but the film's subject took a dramatic turn when Soviet tanks rolled through the streets. The invasion ended Prague Spring, leaving Nemec blacklisted and Oratorio for Prague banned. Even so, the film was able to have a profound impact. The raw footage represented the first proof that the Soviet Army had not been "invited" into Czechoslovakia and was used in international news reports, screened to a standing ovation in New York, and was sourced for Philip Kaufman's The Unbearable Lightness of Being (1988), and featured in Slavoj Zizek and Sophie Fiennes' The Pervert's Guide to Ideology.

Jan Nemec---Czech Republic---1968---26 mins.

Water Is Wet is an astonishing film experiment which visually evokes water to connect children to their feelings, awaken their imaginations and spark their creativity. It was the first of four short films directed by documentary pioneer Gordon Weisenborn. The films were produced by the Erikson Institute for Early Childhood Education and today remain a landmark of instinctual filmmaking for young audiences. Now rediscovered, three of the four films are presented in new high-definition restorations: Sit Down, Where Does My Street Go? and Water Is Wet, together with the fourth, unrestored film, If I Were an Animal. Shot all around Chicago and using a mixture of folk songs, classroom activities, and staged vignettes, these films by Gordon Weisenborn capture a spirit of optimism that strives for a world where all children have equal opportunity. To help children see and experience new things in their immediate surroundings, the four episodes in the series were designed to stimulate imagination, curiosity, and active play.

Gordon Weisenborn---USA---1969-1970---80 mins.