The winning streak of Piotr Rosołowski and Elwira Niewiera's documentary is far from over. This time, their film has been recognised by the jury of the Hong Kong International Film Festival.

The Hong Kong International Film Festival has a long-standing tradition. The first edition took place in 1976, making the festival the oldest international event of its kind in Asia. The event was ground-breaking, being the first to provide such a broad and modern insight into Asian cinema to audiences worldwide, and opening its doors to showcase international productions. Every year, the program features over 200 films from more than 50 countries. 

Among the films invited to the festival was The Hamlet Syndrome by Elwira Niewiera and Piotr Rosołowski.  The documentary captivated the jury, who awarded it the top prize in the documentary competition.

War has taken a heavy toll on the young generation of Ukrainians. Several months before the Russian invasion of Ukraine in 2022, five protagonists – inspired by the motifs of Hamlet – return to the brutal experience of recent years on stage trying to overcome their traumas. Each of them struggles with disappointment, helplessness, or anger in their own way. SLAVIK went through the real hell of war and captivity as a soldier. KATYA wants her mother to finally forgive her for going to the front lines. RODION escaped from the conflict-ridden Donbas and, as an LGBT person, is struggling with growing homophobia in post-revolutionary Ukraine. ROMAN, who tended to wounded soldiers as a military medic, is still fighting his traumatic memories. OXANA, as an actress, takes up the fight on the artistic front. What's most significant – no matter the values they represent, recent years have been a series of shocking experiences that left a brutal mark on their minds. For each of them, the theatre stage becomes a tribune for shouting their regrets while asking themselves Hamlet's central question: to be or not to be?

You can find out more about the festival here.