Grand Prix of the 21st Kraków Mountain Festival for the film ‘Postcards from the Verge’ directed by Natalia Koniarz

  /  21st Krakow Mounatin Festival   /  Grand Prix of the 21st Kraków Mountain Festival for the film ‘Postcards from the Verge’ directed by Natalia Koniarz

Grand Prix of the 21st Kraków Mountain Festival for the film ‘Postcards from the Verge’ directed by Natalia Koniarz

The 21st Krakow Mountain Festival is over. Still yesterday, the interiors of the ICE Krakow Congress Centre were vibrant with life. It was cheerful, reminiscent, reflective, inspiring – in a word, exceptional, as always. At the end, traditionally, a gala was held, at which the winners of the Polish and International Film Competitions were announced.

The final point of the 21st KFG – the gala (photo: Adam Kokot / KFG)


This year, 40 films were shown on the big screen as part of the film competitions, many of which had their Polish premiere. Thirty-two documentaries took part in the International Film Competition, while eight directors presented Polish cinematography. This year’s awards and prizes were decided by a jury composed of: Rosanna Stedile (international competition) as well as Bartek Bargiel, Franciszek Berbeka and Leszek Dawid (Polish and international competitions). Let’s see who stole the hearts of the jury.

International Film Competition

GRAN PRIX of the 21st KFG (Main Sponsor PZU)

A modest number of eight pictures took part in the Polish Film Competition, but it was a Polish director that the Grand Prix of this year’s KFG was awarded to. The jury recognised Postcards from the Verge directed by Natalia Koniarz as the best film.

The justification reads:

With the most significant award, we recognised a film that needed only minimal means to tell a moving and beautiful story. A movie in which form and content most fully reflect what we love about cinema.

Grand Prix of the 21st KFG for the film ‘Postcards from the Verge’ directed by Natalia Koniarz (photo: Adam Kokot / KFG)

The Best Mountaineering Film

The award-winning documentary Pasang. In the Shadow of Everest directed by Nancy Svendsen. The story of Pasang Lhamu Sherpa, who in 1993 became the first Nepalese woman to climb Mount Everest.

For the incredible courage and strength of a heroine who overcame cultural and social barriers.

Best Mountaineering Film – ‘Pasang. In the Shadow of Everest directed’ (photo: Adam Kokot/KFG)

Best Climbing Film

Still Alive, directed by Santiro Martirano. A portrait of a talented climber, Klaas Willems, who is struggling with an illness. The Belgian was this year’s festival guest.

For showing that human passion can turn weakness into great strength.

Najlepszy film wspinaczkowy 21. KFG, “Still Alive” (fot. Adam Kokot/KFG)

Best Exploration/Adventure Film

Just a ride, directed by Matti Juhani Kinnunen and Iisakki Kennilä.

The story of former snowboarder Matti Kinnunen, whose professional career was disrupted by an accident. You could listen to the protagonist and the filmmaker at this year’s Festival. A great, warm and inspiring meeting.

For a deep and honest exploration of one’s feelings, intertwined with extraordinary life experiences and encounters that provided the perfect plot for this story.

Best film in the Exploration/Adventure category – ‘Just a ride’ (photo: Adam Kokot / KFG)

Best Culture/People/Nature Film

Maurice Baquet, l’accordé, directed by Gilles Chappaz

A portrait of Maurice Baquet, a man of multiple talents – musician, actor, stage artist, mountaineer and skier.

For showing the story of an exceptional and unique figure whose love for mountains, music and life can serve as an example for younger generations.

Best film in the Culture/People/Nature category – ‘Maurice Baquet, l’accordé’ (photo: Adam Kokot / KFG)

Socially Engaged Cinema Award

Rakchham. Bridge beetwen worlds, directed by Ray Demski.

An amazing place ‘discovered for climbing’ by Bernd Zangerl. The Indian Sangla Valley, near the small village of Rakchham – this is where Zangerl is creating a climbing Eldorado by working together with the local community.

For presenting the idea of climbing that engages the local community.

Best film in the Socially Engaged Cinema Award category – ‘Rakcham. Bridge beetwen worlds’ (photo: Adam Kokot / KFG)


Polish Film Competition

First Prize – Best Polish Film

Silent Escape, directed by Oswald Rodrigo Pereira. The protagonist of the documentary is mountaineer and great alpine skier Bartek Ziemski.

For the diligent filmmaking despite the extreme conditions.

Best Polish film ‘Silent Escape’ (photo: Adam Kokot / KFG)

Second Prize

Inussuk. The Way Home, directed by Marcin Tomaszewski. Marcin Tomaszewski and Paweł Hałdaś take us on a journey to Greenland.

For showing how extreme climbing can turn into a reflection on the essence of life.

Second Prize in the Polish Film Competition – ‘Inussuk. The way home’ (photo: Adam Kokot / KFG)


We understand that, even if you really wanted to, it was impossible to attend every meeting, lecture, workshop and film. But all is not lost. As in previous years, the festival’s online platform – – will be running throughout December (starting today) and will feature most of the attractions of the 21st KFG. Enjoy!