Elek Judit’s film entitled An island on the mainland has been invited to the Cannes Classics selection of the 76th Cannes Film Festival, which will be held between May 16th and 27th, presenting restored works – the National Film Institute informed MTI on Friday.
According to the NFI, Judit Elek’s first feature film, An island on the mainland, made in 1969, depicts the story of a lonely, old woman. The woman played by Kiss Manyi lives in a large apartment in a Budapest apartment building, but under pressure from her neighbors, who are worried about their cramped joint leases, she decides to change her apartment to a smaller one.
The film authentically evokes the atmosphere of Budapest in the 1960s, the director combines the documentary style with a surreal atmosphere and grotesque humor. Iván Mándy was the screenwriter of An island on the mainland, and Elemér Ragályi, who passed away recently, was the cinematographer.
Judit Elek’s films were shown at Cannes four times, for the first time in 1968 Meddig él az ember? was screened in the Critics’ Week section. An island on the mainland was greeted by a long standing ovation on the mainland when it was shown out of competition in 1972 – read the brochure. As they write, Miklós Jancsó’s Szegénylegények, Károly Makk’s Szerelem, Zoltán Fábri’s Körhinta, Péter Bacsó’s A tanú, Sándor Sándor’s Feldobott kő and Márta Mészáros’s Napló gyermekeimnek were previously invited to the section of the renewed classic works of the Cannes festival.
Judit Elek studied directing at the Academy of Theater and Film Arts between 1956 and 1961 in the class of Félix Máriássy. She began her career as a dramaturg at Budapest Filmstúdio, and was a founding member of Balázs Béla Studio. In her taboo-breaking documentaries and feature films, she portrays human relationships and sensitive social or historical topics with deep compassion and great passion, the announcement states.