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Monk by Andrei Kutsila

edition 2019

A film by Andrei Kutsila and Tatiana Bembel.


The monk of the Zhirovichi Monastery, father Ioann (Oleg Bembel) used to be a dissident best known as the author of a book “Native speech and moral and aesthetic progress” and plenty of poetic collections, published under the nickname “Snitch”. Clothed in cassock and cut in the monastery fashion, he still reiterates going out “to the world”, remaining active and tireless spokesman of his own ideas, nowadays also as a redactor of “Zhirovichi letter” – a miocro-newspaper, almost a leaflet. In the cold and drudgery, on foot and hitch-hiking he travels among the Belarussian roads, getting the means needed for its publication witch such enthusiasm as other people collect money to build the temple. He remains still on the way. Meeting various people, enduring praises and damnation, often very severe, giving out, what he has already printed, he carries out his mission in the modern world full of evil and sin, as he sees it himself. His hiking through the country shows the profile of the society and causes at his interlocutors reflections about such a serious issues as self-determination, their attitude to the faith and God, politics and illnesses of present-day civilization, the close and distant past of Belarus and its place in the modern world as the “rebuilt country”.

Andrei Kutsila

born 1983 in Baranovichi (Belarus)


› 2007 / earned a degree in journalism from the Belarusian State University › 2009 / finished the Belarusian State Academy of Arts
› Participant of many international educational projects (f. ex. IDFAcademy, Berlinale Talents).
› Winner of Gaude Polonia, a scholarship programme of the Ministry of Culture and National Heritage.


2019 – Strip and War
› Film Critic's Award – FIPRESCI at goEast
2018 - Summa
› IDFA Award for Best Mid-Length Documentary at International Documentary Film Festival Amsterdam 
› SILVER HOBBY-HORSE at Krakow Film Festival
› GRAND PRIZE at XXXIII Pärnu International Film Festival
2017 - King of the Hill/Krol Gory
› GOLDEN BEGGAR at 24th International Festival of Local Televisions Golden Beggar
› 2015 – “Where You Belong”
› 2015 – „Guests” 
› 2013 – “Love in Belarus”
› 2012 – „Enough! To Freedom…”
› 2010 – „Kill the Day”,
› 2008 – “Focal Distance”