Alina Birzache

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Alina Birzache is an independent researcher whose interests lie in the interface between cinema and religion. She studied theology at the Faculty of Orthodox Theology, University of Bucharest and was an assistant lecturer at the same faculty before she embarked on doctoral research at New College, University of Edinburgh, from which she was awarded her PhD in 2013. She is the author of The Holy Fool in European Cinema (Routledge, 2016), as well as numerous articles and reviews on related subjects.


Even before this year’s cinematic line-up was revealed, it was clear that the 79th Venice International Film Festival was going to be special given the news that auteur Paul Schrader would receive a Golden Lion for Lifetime Achievement. Schrader is perhaps best known for his psychological portrayals of troubled and lonely people in his own films and screenplays. Alina Birzache, member of the INTERFILM Jury in Venice 2022, reports about the festival.
A hallmark of this year’s Locarno Festival, aside from the tropical weather, was the high proportion of films in the competition featuring female protagonists. The Festival’s charismatic artistic director, Carlo Chatrian, acknowledged in a private conversation with our Ecumenical Jury that this was more the result of serendipity than design, but it nonetheless reflected trends in international cinema. During the 12 days of this cinematic feast, gripping portraits of women appeared on the screen, from coming-of-age to end-of-life stories.


31.08.2022 to 10.09.2022
01.08.2018 to 11.08.2018
01.11.2011 to 06.11.2011
11.11.2010 to 21.11.2010
Mannheim and Heidelberg
13.05.2009 to 24.05.2009
07.02.2008 to 17.02.2008