28th Ji.hlava International Documentary Film Festival

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competition sections

Opus Bonum

Opus Bonum is a competition section for the best world documentary films presented in world, international or European premieres. → USD 10,000 for the winning film → USD 5,000 for the best Central and East European film* (in cooperation with Current Time TV) → EUR 3,000 for the best film from V4 countries** (in cooperation with the International Visegrad Fund) → EUR 3,000 for the best debut (in cooperation with ARRI) → awards for the best cinematography, editing, sound design, film essay, etc. * Albania, Armenia, Azerbaijan, Belarus, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Bulgaria, Croatia, Czech Republic, Estonia, Georgia, Hungary, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Kosovo, Latvia, Lithuania, North Macedonia, Moldova, Montenegro, Poland, Romania, Russia (only for films not supported by the Russian state institutions), Slovakia, Slovenia, Serbia, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan, Ukraine, and Uzbekistan ** Czech Republic, Hungary, Poland, Slovakia


Testimonies is a competition section dedicated to powerful documentary films which deal with important social, economic, environmental, and political phenomena.

Czech Joy

Czech Joy is a competition section for the best Czech documentary, celebrating diversity of themes and cinematic expression. → 200.000 CZK for the winning film → Professional Nikon camera for the Special mention

Short Joy

Short Joy is a competition section for the most remarkable world documentary shorts. All films are made available online and free for two weeks prior to the festival. The public, anywhere in the world, is the jury of the section. You can watch and vote here. → Free distribution on DAFilms.com platform for one year & additional support for the winning film


Fascinations is a prestigious competition section for best world experimental documentary films. Exploration of new forms, approaches, and film language.

Fascinations: Exprmntl.cz

Exprmntl.cz is a competition section representing the latest Czech experimental films that search for new ways of expressing reality using both classical and digital film formats.

Virtual Reality

Virtual Reality competition gives viewers the chance to enter into 360° films and spatial installations. Here, you can find 360° documentary films, VR installations and works on the boundary between film and art that make use of virtual spaces to create autonomous worlds whose own rules are determined by visuality. We are interested in works that take advantage of the characteristics of virtuality in an innovative and contemplative manner, that experiment with the audiovisual representation of reality and real stories, or that build an entertaining and instructive world of knowledge and learning.

non-competition sections


The Constellations section presents films, that recently shone on world documentary skies. We introduce carefully selected remarkable titles from other film festivals.

Special Event

Exceptional cinema events that offer a unique and profound perspective on the complexities of human experience.

Siren Test

The section dedicated to music/sound in contemporary progressive cinematography. Afrofuturism Since the 1960s, the radical imagination of black Americans has led to a blending of mysticism, science fiction, and progressive music in the name of dreaming of a more just society. The film Sun Ra: Joyful Noise is a portrait of the legendary bandleader Sun Ra and his intergalactic orchestra; another other contexts of Afrofuturism will be presented in a seminar with film excerpts.

Reality TV

Reality TV opens viewers’ eyes to new television formats and presents the full range of current forms of crossover genres such as docudrama, docusoap, reality show, and mockumentary.

Doc Alliance Selection

Featuring the best films screened at Doc Alliance festivals, including two 2022 Doc Alliance Award winners. Ji.hlava IDFF is part of the alliance, which together consists of 7 key European documentary film festivals. Representatives from each festival nominate both a short and feature film from their program each year, from which European journalists select two Doc Alliance Award winners.

FAMU Presents

FAMU presents a selection of the most remarkable documentary films made in the 1st year of the Department of Documentary Filmmaking.

Czech Television Documentaries

Svou dokumentární tvorbu za uplynulý rok představuje Česká televize již tradičně v Horáckém divadle jednak formou ukázek z nejnovějších dokumentárních cyklů a seriálů a jednak prostřednictvím solitérních televizních i distribučních koprodukčních snímků s následnými besedami s tvůrci. Současné kultuře se věnuje například film Slobodanky Radun „La Fabrika“ o renomovaném multifunkčním prostoru, který za patnáct let své existence hostil umělce a soubory považované za špičky ve svých oborech. Současnou ženskou písničkářskou scénu mapuje seriál Dagmar Smržové „Muzikantky“. Historická témata zpracovává například Miloš Šmídmajer a Martin Slunečko ve filmu „František Kriegel: Sám proti Moskvě“, anebo v nevšedním portrétu A. Dubčeka „Všichni lidé budou bratři“ režisér Robert Kirchhoff. Originální a místy až úsměvné ohlédnutí za lockdownem prostřednictvím herečky V. Hybnerové, písničkářky Radůzy, teologa T. Halíka či provozovatelů vleku na horách a kavárny ve městě přináší film „Stop Time“ režiséra Davida Čálka. Současná témata zkoumá v oceňovaném snímku „Váleční reportéři“ Petr Jančárek, anebo Natálie Císařovská v „Byznysu s nadějí“.

My Street Films

Over the ten years of its existence, My Street Films has established itself as a vital educational project that inspires members of the general public to make a short film to speak out about issues they feel are important. The uniqueness of the project lies in its openness - it connects the community of people who are actively involved in their city with professionals from the media industry all year round. In addition to the national competition for the best film, it organises workshops on documentary filmmaking for selected candidates, open seminars for the public, a programme for schools and film screenings combined with a lecture or discussion. In the online edition of Ji.hlava IDFF we will present all the films from this year's My Street Films Award competition.


A comprehensive look at the documentary methods, creative decisions, styles, and cinematic thinking of exceptional documentary filmmakers.

Virtual Reality: USA

Experience virtual reality walks in VR cinema projections, and enter installations where you can intervene and influence the story and the world yourself. Enjoy the selection of VRs from the USA.

Game Zone

Serious games, simulations, adventure games, RPG – we explore the ways different genres highlight serious topics: for instance the life in a totalitarian society, the construction of a sustainable environment, the sources and spreading of false news. Game zone will newly be situated on Masaryk Square in the very heart of Jihlava. Open daily.

First Lights

First Lights presents the Czech premieres of notable films that were shot at film schools. The collection is an opportunity for films and young filmmakers to meet with viewers, as well as for students and teachers from various European schools to gather. The festival is a field for future crops, a place where new authors, new films, new visions and reflections will appear for the first time.

transparent being / retrospectives

Tribute: Naomi Kawase

A tribute to Japanese director Naomi Kawase. Poetic and unobtrusive, subtle but radical, discreet and naturally committed... discover with us all the significance of Kawase's Eastern film aesthetic.

Translucent Being: Pavel Koutecký

Pavel Koutecký's documents are a chronicle of post-socialist Czechoslovakia. "I believe that documentary film can just as well develop a critical view of reality as it can help one group of people understand another." The persistent observer, subtle ironist and brilliant filmmaker will be remembered for his student, social, time-lapse and political films.

Translucent Being: Marguerite Duras

A retrospective selection of films by Marguerite Duras. Literature and film are two sides of the same work. "Life can only be brought to life by the way the imagination takes possession of everything that was, is and will be." Her vibrantly formal films co-created the political and avant-garde dynamics of the new cinema as they sought to revive it in a gesture of destruction.

Translucent Being: Václav Táborský

This year's festival brings a unique collection of works by Václav Táborský. Before he emigrated to Canada in 1968, where he worked as a university teacher and writer, he was largely responsible for ushering in cinéma vérité in Czechoslovak cinematography. He took part in the founding of the creative group ČAS, which moved documentary film from the staging of the 1950s to the reality of everyday life in the 1960s. Táborský's filmography includes over 80 short films and almost 50 educational programs that depict everyday life with humour and authenticity.

The Méliès Brothers' Documentary Film

Georges Méliès, Gaston Méliès Although we are far from knowing their complete filmography and probably never will, the preserved part of their work still says more about the viewing habits of the time and the beginnings of cinema than we have long been willing to admit.

Czechoslovak Film Feuilleton

The New Authenticity of the Czechoslovak Film Essay “The loss of a sense of humour is one of the most serious disabilities of our time.” The specific form of the film essay (or feuilleton) became widespread in Czechoslovakia in the 1960s. It was a response to the socio-political developments in the country and to the veristic trends in world cinema. Greater freedom of expression and space for public discussion allowed filmmakers to come into closer contact with the public and the everyday reality of ordinary people. The works for which the term “Czechoslovak New Wave” was adopted were created, and opinion polls, hidden cameras, reportage and observation were popular. Among the genres of this “new authenticity” was the film essay, which commented with ironic exaggeration on negative social phenomena.

Fascinations: AI

Exploring the creativity and possibilities of autonomous AI input into audiovisual works.

100 years of Czech Radio

See the sound. Radio through the eyes of filmmakers A series of short films from the 1930s to the 1960s from the collections of the National Film Archive, screened on the occasion of this year's 100th birthday of Czech Radio. It will offer reports from weekly newspapers, as well as documentaries and animated films that will bring to light the relationship between film and radio at a time when sound was a more accessible medium than image. The films have been selected by radio historians Tomáš Dufka and Dušan Radovanovič, who will accompany the screening with their commentary.
Ministerstvo kultury
Fond kinematografie
Město Jihlava
Kraj Vysočina
Creative Europe Media
Česká televize
Český rozhlas