The Beauty
Inga is the spitting image of her beautiful, but exhausted single mother. The six-year-old girl imitates the older woman’s gestures in a mirror. Her self-image is confirmed in a game she plays with the neighbourhood children. Dancing in the park, or the courtyard, she is showered with compliments – “She’s beautiful like a fairy tale princess” and “She dances like a snowflake”. That is, until a young boy moves into her building who doesn’t play the game by the rules. He calls her ugly and says she has a swollen head. That catapults Inga into her first identity crisis and sends her to the beauty salon … In his previous film, Mergaitė ir aidas (The Girl and the Echo, 1964), Arūnas Žebriūnas set a young girl on a beach holiday adrift amid a gang of young ruffians. In The Beauty, too, the director depicts a naïf confronted with prepubescent male aggression. But like D’Artagnan, the hero of her secret night-time reading, Inga emerges from every challenge victorious. Because, in the end, she realises that in life, as at the cinema, beauty is in the eye of the beholder.
by Arūnas Žebriūnas
with Inga Mickytė, Lilija Žadeikytė, Sergejus Martinsonas, Arvydas Samukas, Tauras Ragalevičius, Vladas Jurkūnas, Gediminas Girdvainis, Auksė Kokštaitė, Vaiva Ragauskaitė, Vaidevutis Mickys
USSR / Lithuania 1969 Lithuanian 66’ Black/White DCP: Lithuanian Film Centre

For the 2023 Retrospective, internationally renowned directors, actors, and screenwriters were asked to select their personal coming-of-age favourites.
Sergei Loznitsa on his selection


  • Inga Mickytė
  • Lilija Žadeikytė
  • Sergejus Martinsonas
  • Arvydas Samukas
  • Tauras Ragalevičius
  • Vladas Jurkūnas
  • Gediminas Girdvainis
  • Auksė Kokštaitė
  • Vaiva Ragauskaitė
  • Vaidevutis Mickys


Director Arūnas Žebriūnas
Screenplay Jurijus Jakovlevas
Cinematography Algimantas Mockus
Editing Lilija Zivienė
Music Viačeslavas Ganelinas
Sound Stasys Vilkevičius
Art Directors Algirdas Ničius, Viktorija Vilimienė
Costumes Viktorija Bimbaitė
Make-Up Marija Orzekauskaitė

Additional information

DCP: Lithuanian Film Centre