Gunda is the protagonist of this gentle black-and-white documentary triptych. She takes care of her little ones, accompanies them on a journey of discovery and then takes a break to recharge her batteries. She tentatively approaches the camera. Does she know what her fate is? What might she be thinking? What does she think of us? Gunda is one of several hundred million pigs that inhabit the planet, alongside a billion cattle, represented in the film by two gracefully mooing cows, and over 20 billion chickens, exemplified here by a one-legged chicken stumbling its way through the world. Whether rooting through the mud, swatting away flies or searching for worms, they all are heroes. And film essayist Victor Kossakovsky is and remains adamant: after this film meat consumption is impossible. His indignation about the ignorance of humans in general and the degradation of these creatures in particular flows into his conceptually minimalist, but visually brilliant meditation. Gunda is an intimate portrait. An intervention in the form of a modest gesture. A film that ascribes majestic greatness to the underdogs. And makes us think. In the very least.
by Victor Kossakovsky Norway / USA 2020 Without dialogue 93’ Black/White World premiere | Documentary form


Director Victor Kossakovsky
Screenplay Victor Kossakovsky, Ainara Vera
Cinematography Egil Håskjold Larsen, Victor Kossakovsky
Editing Victor Kossakovsky, Ainara Vera
Sound Design Alexandr Dudarev
Sound Alexandr Dudarev
Production Managers Recha Nia, Charlotte Hailstone
Producers Anita Rehoff Larsen, Joslyn Barnes
Executive Producers Joaquin Phoenix, Tone Grøttjord-Glenne
Co-Executive Producer Regina K. Scully

Produced by

Sant & Usant Production

Louverture Films

Victor Kossakovsky

The filmmaker began his career in 1978 at the Leningrad Studio of Documentaries as a camera assistant, assistant director and editor. In 1988, he graduated with a degree in screenwriting and directing from the Moscow Film School. His feature debut The Belovs won both the VPRO Joris Ivens Award and the Audience Award at the IDFA in 1993. Since then, his films have received numerous prizes. His previous film, Gunda, premiered in the Encounters section at the 2020 Berlinale and was nominated for the European Film Award.

Filmography (selection)

1993 Belovy (The Belovs) 1997 Sreda 19.07.1961 (Wednesday 19.07.1961) 1999 Pavel i Lyalya (Pavel and Lyalya); short film 2001 Ya vas lubil (I Loved You...) 2003 Tishe! (Hush!) 2005 Svyato; short film 2011 ¡Vivan las antípodas! 2014 Demonstration 2018 Aquarela 2020 Gunda 2024 Architecton

Bio- & filmography as of Berlinale 2024