Past screening

The Vanquishing of the Witch Baba Yaga

Directed by: Jessica Oreck
Runtime: 1hr 13min Year: 2014
Watch trailer


Directed by: Jessica Oreck
Runtime: 1hr 13min Year: 2014
Country: United States, Russian Federation, Poland
Last Screened: Wed 5th Oct 2016

Following fairytales and personal memories like a trail of breadcrumbs, we descend into Eastern Europe's haunted woodlands.

“original and unforgettable… an altogether new kind of art” – Jordan Cronk, Fandor

“beautifully rendered… gorgeously photographed” – Frank Scheck, Hollywood Reporter

From generation to generation, centuries-old Slavic folklore carries the legendary tale of Baba Yaga, a ferocious witch who lives in a hut perched on chicken legs in a haunted forest. When their family home is invaded in this version of the tale, the young heroine and her brother escape deep into the woods to seek refuge.

In deceptively benevolent fashion, Baba Yaga offers shelter and cruelly tests their spirit and resolve with every impossible challenge she bestows on them. Using a traditional illustration style, director Jessica Oreck retells the unifying narrative of this widely and diversely told tale, interweaving it with a modern, anthropological portrait of present-day life in Eastern Europe.

Taking the viewer through the deeply rooted traditions that foster a profound and enduring connection to the forest, this enchanting film is a meditation on the passing down of story and tradition, the confluence of mythology and the subconscious, and the accumulation of collective memory.