Frost, a film by Sharunas Bartas, premiered at the 70th Cannes IFF on May 23. This international co-production was co-financed by the Polish Film Institute.

Applause at the Premiere

May 23 marked the Cannes premiere of Frost, a film by Sharunas Bartas. Frost is a co-production between France, Lithuania, Ukraine and Poland, and co-financed by the Polish Film Institute. The film screened in the Cannes festival’s prestigious Directors’ Fortnight section, which in the past has featured films by such directors as Werner Herzog, Martin Scorsese, Jim Jarmusch, and Michael Haneke. The audience received Frost with a standing ovation.

Andrzej Chyra: “This place brings out the magic of cinema”

“When you hear the word ‘Cannes,’ you know everything. It is the dream, the goal that empowers you,” said actor Andrzej Chyra at the Cannes premiere.

“There’s something exceptional about this place; among its tuxedos, red carpets, sunlight and beautiful vistas, people come together to share the experience of watching a film like Frost, which takes us into a very different reality. This place brings out the magic of cinema, which in itself is a separate and independent world,” said Chyra.

International Co-Production Co-Financed by the Polish Film Institute

Frost is a powerful contemporary film that takes us on a journey to the heart of the conflict in Ukraine.
This co-production between France, Lithuania, Ukraine and Poland, directed by Sharunas Bartas, is the story of young volunteers who travel with a humanitarian convoy to eastern Ukraine. On their journey, they meet people whose lives have been affected by war and discover the complexity of their emotions in difficult circumstances.

The film’s Polish co-producers are Maria Blicharska and Monika Sajko-Gradowska of Donten & Lacroix Films. On the French side, the film is co-produced by KinoElektron and Reborn Production, with Studija Kinema on the Lithuanian side, and Insight Media/Tato Film as the Ukrainian co-producers. The film was written by Sharunas Bartas and Anna Cohen-Yanay, and directed by Sharunas Bartas. Along with an array of Lithuanian thespians, Frost features Polish actor Andrzej Chyra and French actress Vanessa Paradis. The film was scored by Polish award-winning composer Paweł Mykietyn.

First Reviews

The first reviews of Frost have been published in the French press. Luc Chessel of Liberation writes: “Sharunas Bartas’ film, featuring a young Lithuanian couple travelling with a humanitarian convoy to Donbass, has a magnificent finale.”

“Like in all of Bartas’ films, it’s the faces that strike us the most at first. The faces of Mantas Jancauskas (who plays Rokas) and Lyja Maknaviciute (who plays Inga). They are enigmatic, because what we read in them is entirely different from what is happening on screen; they are not illegible, but distinct in their own way […]. It is tempting to reveal the film’s ending. Anyone will tell you that the last twenty minutes of the film are magnificent […].

“Frost is in a sense a northern and postmodern version of Rosselini’s Journey to Italy; a young couple gets lost in the night, in the snowy steppes, before facing real danger — war […]. The proximity of death makes love and life all the more valuable. This long journey also features magnificent moments. The surrealism of the luxurious hotel where the humanitarian organisation delegation is based […], the experience of infidelity, with Vanessa Paradis giving a spectacular performance as a woman who, under cover of night, confides in young Rokas. The film’s snowy and desolate plains reveal the ultimate and atrocious truth of war, which comes down to killing or being killed,” writes Jacques Mandelbaum for Le Monde.

For more details about Polish presence at the 70th Cannes IFF please visit: www.pisf.pl/aktualnosci/wiadomosci/polska-kinematografia-na-70-mff-w-cannes

Based on the press release

Translated by Karolina Kołtun