Marijas klusums

Maria’s Silence
1937. The passengers on the train are preparing for the border crossing, actress Maria Leiko among them. She has been summoned to the USSR by high-ranking secret police officer Jēkabs Peterss in order to bid farewell to her daughter in the morgue – and to learn that she died in childbirth. The grandchild is healthy; Maria wants to take care of her and stays in Moscow, where she works with Asja Lācis at the Latvian Skatuve Theatre. But in reality, she’s playing another role entirely, unwittingly: that of an innocent victim ensnared by Stalinist terror. Dāvis Sīmanis is interested in the radical ideologies of the 20th century in Eastern Europe. With self-assurance, he sketches out this moment of free-floating accord with Soviet power and crafts an instructive narrative about the logic of human violence. Whether an ardent Bolshevik or an apolitical artist, everyone imagines themselves to be untouchable. Blind to the fact that bread is growing scarce on the streets and violence is omnipresent, they themselves create the monster that consumes them. The Latvian Operation is a history lesson that doubles as an allegory or even a prologue to Russia’s “operations” of today.
by Dāvis Sīmanis
with Olga Šepicka-Slapjuma, Artūrs Skrastiņš, Vilis Daudziņš, Inese Kučinska, Ģirts Ķesteris, Gļebs Beļikovs, Dana Ščerbina, Ženija Škuberte-Sudmale
Latvia / Lithuania 2024 Latvian, Russian, German 104’ World premiere


  • Olga Šepicka-Slapjuma
  • Artūrs Skrastiņš
  • Vilis Daudziņš
  • Inese Kučinska
  • Ģirts Ķesteris
  • Gļebs Beļikovs
  • Dana Ščerbina
  • Ženija Škuberte-Sudmale


Director Dāvis Sīmanis
Screenplay Dāvis Sīmanis, Magali Negroni, Tabita Rudzāte
Cinematography Andrejs Rudzāts
Editing Ieva Veiverytė
Music Paulius Kilbauskas, Justinas Štaras
Sound Jonas Maksvytis
Production Design Kristīne Jurjāne
Costumes Kristīne Jurjāne, Rūta Kuplā, Aija Strazdiņa
Make-Up Aija Beata Rjabovska
Casting Māra Liniņa
Producers Gints Grūbe, Inese Boka-Grūbe
Co-Producers Justė Michailinaitė, Kęstutis Drazdauskas
Co-Production Broom Films Vilnius

Dāvis Sīmanis

Latvian filmmaker, academic and theorist. He has directed historical feature films, numerous poetic documentary films as well as cross-genre features that have participated in various major festivals.


2006 Versija.LNO; short film 2009 Valkyrie Limited; documentary 2010 Pasaules skana (Sounds Under the Sun); documentary 2013 Pēdējā tempļa hronikas (The Chronicles of the Last Temple); documentary 2014 Escaping Riga; documentary 2016 Pelnu sanatorija (Exiled) 2018 Mūris (D Is for Division); documentary · Tēvs Nakts (The Mover) 2020 The Rossellinis; documentary 2021 Gads pirms kara (The Year Before the War) 2022 Emīlija. Latvijas Preses Karaliene (Emily. Queen of the Press); series, co-director of one episode 2023 Pansija (Pansion in the Mansion); series, co-director episode 7 2024 Marijas klusums (Maria’s Silence)

Bio- & filmography as of Berlinale 2024