We're thrilled to be partnering with Klassiki - the world's only streaming platform dedicated to cinema from Eastern Europe, the Caucasus and Central Asia - for screenings of two contemporary documentaries, Bridges of Time (2018) on Tue 4 April and Fragile Memory (2022) on Wed 12 April.

Here’s what Klassiki have to say about the programme:

“We’re really excited to be able to program Bridges of Time and Fragile Memory together. Both of these documentaries are visually striking and philosophically engaged films-about-films, exploring radical movements from Soviet film history: Baltic poetic documentary and Ukrainian poetic cinema.

These two schools were considered subversive of Soviet control and have been associated with struggles towards national liberation – but as Bridges of Time and Fragile Memory show, these were also deeply personal, human stories. Taken together, these two documentaries explore the ways in which personal and collective memories function in cinema, and the role that “poetry” can play in remembering.

At Klassiki we’ve long been interested in these film histories. To accompany the in-cinema screenings, we’ve put together a short series of related films and readings on our site, including more classics of Baltic documentary and Bridges of Time director Audrius Stonys’s breathtaking The Woman and the Glacier.” You can find this here.

Read on to find out more about the upcoming Klassiki events at Bertha DocHouse.

Bridges of Time / Audrius Stonys / 2018 / 88 mins

The radical Baltic New Wave of the 1960s redefined documentary: moving away from realism and towards romance, and a belief that the documentary form could pose metaphysical questions about life.

From renowned Lithuanian director Audrius Stonys and Latvian writer Kristine Briede, Bridges of Time is a meditative cinema essay that celebrates the lesser-known cinema poets of the Baltic New Wave.

A poetic take on a biography, the film pays homage to these great documentary filmmakers, whose philosophy was to “seek out the most beautiful, venerable, heart-warming and intense states of the human soul.”

Join us for a screening of Bridges of Time on Tue 4 April, 18:20. Book tickets here

For an introduction to Baltic New Wave cinema, check out Klassiki’s blog post here.

Fragile Memory / Ihor Ivanka / 2022 / 85 mins

A young filmmaker uncovers a previously unpublished archive of photographs by his grandfather, the celebrated Ukrainian cinematographer Leonid Burlaka.

Burlaka worked at Odesa Film Studios in the 1970s, a time when Ukrainian Poetic Cinema was bursting onto the world stage, with a succession of visually dazzling films such as Shadows of Forgotten Ancestors (Sergei Parajanov) and White Bird Marked with Black (Yuriy Ilyenko).

Through a series of interviews with his grandfather, emerging Ukrainian filmmaker Ihor tries to understand what it was like to make films at that time, patiently asking him about his life and work. But time is against him; his grandfather has Alzheimer’s and his memory is slowly deteriorating. Fragile Memory is a loving tribute Burlaka and a document of his memories before they are lost.

The film will play on Wed 12 April, 18:30 – book tickets here.

To find out more about Ukrainian Poetic Cinema, check out Klassiki’s blog post here.