The Baltics Visiting: Away, feature film
After his plane crashes on a small uninhabited island, a young man and his dog must find a way home.
A boy and a little bird are traveling across an island on a motorcycle trying to escape a dark spirit and get back home.
Directed by: Gints Zilbalodis
Written by: Gints Zilbalodis
Animation: Gints Zilbalodis
Editing: Gints Zilbalodis
Music: Gints Zilbalodis
Sound: Gints Zilbalodis
Producer: Gints Zilbalodis
Distribution: Cinema Management Group
Away is remarkable for various reasons. Not only does it feel like a completely different style of animation from what one might traditionally associate with the Baltic regions (it being a slick, 3D computer animation), but it also represents an immense technical achievement for an animator. Everything in the movie – from the animation to the editing to the music – was done solely by Zilbalodis. Without any other crew on board, the film is a testament to the singular vision and dedication of an animator whose work will be eagerly awaited over the years to come.
- Laurence Boyce, Cineuropa
[The film] took three-and-a-half years to make. I decided to split it up into four chapters. This helped me to transition from shorts to features more smoothly, and made it easier to structure the story and find the funding. There were no storyboards or script. I could do this because I didn’t have a crew.
- Gints Zilbalodis
According to Gints Zilbalodis, Away was influenced by a lot of different things. The long-take camera shots were inspired by films like I Am Cuba (1964) and Y tu Mamá También (2001). There were also TV series such as Future Boy Conan, a 1978 post-apocalyptic science-fiction anime series made by the legendary Hayao Miyazaki, which is an example of incredible world building. There are bands and musicians like Sigur Rós, Trent Reznor and Atticus Ross, Max Richter, and Gustavo Santaolalla alongside computer games like Journey and Shadow of the Colossus. He also admires the books of Haruki Murakami.
- Contrechamp Award, Annecy International Animated Film Festival 2019
- Best Feature Film for Children, Anima Mundi, 2019
- Stork d'Or (Best Animated Feature), Strasbourg European Fantastic Film Festival 2019
- Best Animated Feature Film, Animest – Bucarest Animated Film Festival 2019
- Jury Special Award for Feature Film, New Chitose Airport International Animated Film Festival 2019