The world premiere of Block 5, the new children’s film by Klemen Dvornik

10. July 2024
Locarno Film Festival

The children’s film Block 5, directed by Klemen Dvornik, has been selected for the official programme of the Locarno Kids Screenings section of this year’s International Film Festival in Locarno. The festival will take place from 7 to 17 August. The official Locarno Kids Screenings section, featuring the new Slovenian children’s film, has been running since 2017.

Block 5 will be screened on 11 August and go down in history as the first Slovenian film to be screened in the section dedicated to the youngest audience at the legendary Swiss festival.

The director says the following about his film: As a father of two sons, I have had the opportunity to experience first-hand how different childhood is today: playing cowboys and Indians in the yard has been replaced by digital battles, best friends do not live in the next street but rather on the next continent, while scratched knees and bloody noses have been replaced by burning eyes and depression.

With the film Block 5, I want to present the beauty of outdoor play and socialising with their peers to children while sending them the message that we must never give up because when we work together, we can make a difference and build a better future! Through the adventures of Alma and her friends, I wish to recreate an emotionally and visually exciting narrative, similar to the film E.T., which inspired me as a child.

About being selected for the festival, he said: “I am extremely grateful and honoured for the opportunity to co-create the children’s film Block 5. Being selected for the Locarno Kids Screenings means a lot to me, as one of the main criteria for the selection is to expand children’s understanding of themselves and the world. From my own experience, I know that films can speak deeply and move our inner worlds, which is invaluable, especially for children.”

Block 5 is an action-adventure film about a group of twelve-year-olds who take on the adults to save their playground from destruction. Alma recently moved to a new neighbourhood, where her classmate Luna’s skateboarding hangout is also located. Not only do Alma and Luna not get along – they are outright nemeses! However, once Alma discovers that her father’s company plans to demolish the playground, she becomes determined to save the green space. Alma has no choice but to join forces with her worst enemies – Luna’s skateboarding gang. The battle over the playground evolves into a story about unity and mutual forgiveness.

Cast: Kaja Zabret as Alma, Kaja Šuštar as Luna, Youri Friderich, Niko Lemark, David Trontelj, and others. In addition to the Slovenian actors Marko Mandić and Gregor Zorc, major roles were also played by Croatia’s Ivana Roščić and Enis Bešlagić, as well as the Serbian actor Tihomir Stanić.

The screenplay was written by Dora Šustić, while the director of photography was David Hofmann. The film crew also includes the production designer Miha Knific, makeup designer Mojca Gorogranc Petrushevska, costume designer Katarina Šavs, and sound designer Lukáš Ujčík, while Davor Herceg wrote the music and Ivana Fumić was in charge of editing.

The film is a Slovenian-Czech-Croatian-Serbian co-production, financially supported by the Slovenian Film Centre, RTV Slovenija, the Czech Film Fund, the Croatian Audiovisual Centre, the Ministry of Culture of the Republic of Serbia, and the Film Centre Serbia. Block 5 also received support from the European Commission’s Media programme for development and Eurimages support for production. The film’s main producer is Branislav Srdić from the A Atalanta production company. At the world premiere, the producers stated: “We made Block 5 with a better future in mind. We believe that in today’s increasingly digital world, where individuality has replaced the collective, it is more important than ever to tell stories about the beauty of the analogue world and the power of community. Being selected for such a notable festival provides us with new opportunities to reach audiences, which strengthens our voice, along with the message that everyone can change their world for the better and thus also improve the entire world.”

The film is co-produced by the December production company (Vlado Bulajić and Lija Pogačnik), the Czech company (Jakub Rálek and Peter Badač), the Croatian company Antitalent (Katarina Prpić and Danijel Pek), and the Serbian company Living Pictures (Dimče Stojanovski and Stefan Orlandić Stojanovski).

More than a film

The #GibanjeZaGibanje (Movement For Movement) campaign is running alongside the film, designed by the film team in collaboration with the Trampolin creative studio. The campaign aims to encourage young people from all over Slovenia to balance their excessive screen use and increasing individuality with more exercise and high-quality social interaction.

The campaign is also joined by the popular rapper Nipke and the producer Damjan Jović, who have created an upbeat song for the film Block 5. The song is an ode to how vital exercising and growing up healthily actually is, which represents a significant problem in today’s society.

Slovenian audiences will be able to see the film in cinemas from 5 September at Cineplexx, Kinodvor, and other cinemas of the Slovenian Art Cinema Association.

More information about the film is available at the following link.

Trailer of the film is available here.