Slovak fest opens with local take on 'Waiting For Godot'

BRATISLAVIA — The Sixth Bratislava Film Festival kicked off Friday with the preem of Slovak adaptation “Terminal Station,” a life lesson developed from a stage piece.

Czech helmer Jiri Chlumsky and scribe Stanislav Stepka made “Terminal” for broadcast TV but fest organizers, calling the format “elegant,” decided to open the event with a screening in Slovakia’s capital.

Chlumsky said the film, shot in 24 days over four years, its $680,000 budget financed completely from Slovak public and private sources, represented a major achievement. “We are happy to have it finished,” he said, laughing. The film, which features a cast of mainly theater actors, was shot entirely at the railway station of a small Slovak town outside Bratislava.

Some 160 films will unspool at the nine-day fest, including eight foreign-lingo Oscar nominees, a New Slovak Films sidebar and Zoom, a popular annual section this year focusing on Icelandic film.

Hilmar Oddssons’ mood piece “Cold Light” highlights that series, while Oscar contender “Control,” a Hungarian story of surreal adventures in the Budapest metro, leads off the sidebar Free Zone: Youth Without Limits.

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