Marian URBAN (ALEF Film&Media Group), Zdenek SKAUNIC (Filmove ateliery )
The story of Small Celebrations is a story taken from life. It starts with a downfall and ends with a chance to go on – a banal story, as one could say. But aren’t the stories that surround us every day and that we experience first hand truly banal? We touch them and they touch us. They are banal because they are part of life. The story is about a mother and daughter. It uncovers their pre-history through parallel motifs and places it in a broader temporal and spatial context. A close-up portrait of relationships grows into a larger picture of three generations of one family. Magda (38) and Agata (13) live in a rented flat in a high-riser housing neighbourhood. The space of the neighbourhood arouses fear and makes the characters act – each in her own way. Agata sees her mother’s helplessness and tries to help her. But she finds herself in a situation that leaves a lasting imprint on her. Her wariness of the cruelty of the setting eases and she lets herself get entangled in murky turns of violence. At the end of the story, all characters stand on the cross-roads again. The avenues that open up before them are dead ends. Instead of a happy end, they continue in their hopeless search. The story is first and foremost about flickers of happiness born out of necessity. If we watch closely enough, behind the cruelty of survival we will discover hidden joy that shines in all direction like rays of light.