Peter Kerekes


Peter Kerekes

producer, director

Pepik the Czech Goes to Poland In a Quest for Love of God

In the middle of Europe, two nations coexist side by side, close to one another in many ways and yet worlds apart. The Czechs are dedicated atheists, while the Poles are born as baptized Catholics. Czechs shake their heads in disbelief at Polish piety, while Poles hold Czechs in contempt for living without God. A Czech documentary crew sets out on a summertime pilgrimage across Poland in order to investigate through the camera the concrete situation regarding the notion of Czech atheism vs. Polish religion.

Wishing on a Star

According to a recent study, only 7% of the world population admits to believe in astrology. However, many of us have been caught sneaking at our horoscope. When questioned about such activity, we reply that we do it because it is fun, or because it is a nice way to break long office hours. We all agree that reading about our future is somehow comforting.

Among the people who have no problems confessing their faith in the Zodiac, there are some who believe that travelling to a specific destination on their birthday will change their lives. Behind the travelling choices of such group of birthday-globetrotters, there is a woman: the Neapolitan astrologist Luciana de Leoni d’Asparedo.

Luciana, 63, is one of the exponents of Active Astrology. As she likes to put it: it is a simple, but effective way to change your destiny by taking a trip on your birthday. Luciana's job is partly that of an esoteric strategist and partly that of a travel agent. While triangulating latitude, longitude and ephemerides on maps, she keeps and eye on the best offers on Skyscanner.

Luciana’s office is located in a crumbling castle of Aiello del Friuli. The village, not too far from the Venice Lagoon, is surrounded by corn fields and plenty of houses on sale. The agricultural and the real estate sectors have been struggling lately, but Luciana’s clients have been growing steadily. Women looking for love, confused teenagers, entrepreneurs on the verge of a crisis: these are the customers who ask Luciana to be prescribed a birthday trip.

Far from being an investigation into transcendence, the documentary is rooted in the contemporary historical time. All the character’s desires, in fact, have something in common, they are all “First World” birthday wishes that will appear small when compared to the vastness of the sky.

Underneath the humorous mood, the documentary intends to be a tender and empathic reflection of a very human need: longing for meaning in a cosmos filled with endless chaos.


A legend of Canada’s First Nation of Mi’kmaq says that Moose once came to men and made a deal on under what conditions it would dedicate its meat to humans. As the Mi’kmaq representatives guide us through Amoosed! we get to understand why humans have lost the trust of moose (and nature) and how they can regain it.

Six different people in different countries have changed their way of perceiving nature after they have encountered Moose. Initially, they all wanted to control or abuse them, but ended up changed by them. Can a single species change the overall sensitivity about nature and twist the current future we are heading towards? Are we allowed to interfere with the lives of others, even animals, and to what extend?

Sasha, the farmer at the Russian moose domestication station in Kostroma protects moose and only wishes for them to be free, but the calves are still taken away from their moose mothers at the farm. Moose are dying of malnutrition in Czech zoos while the experts on moose, who have never seen one live, describe how many years on average moose live and what kind of thousands of herbs they need in their daily menu. Then there are the bizarre Swedish owners of moose safaris who, although they love moose, keep them in captivity and show them to tourists.

As Mi'kmaqs slowly succeed in reclaiming their territories and rights, moose are succeeding in persuading us that we, humans, belong to the ecosystem, and we are all one inseparable whole with nature.
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