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Easy Lessons

DirectorDorottya Zurbo
ProducerJulianna Ugrin – Eclipse Film
CastKafiya Said Mahdi
EditorPeter Sass
CameraNatasha Pavlovskaya
SoundRudolf Varhegyi H.A.S.E.
MusicAdam Balazs
Length78 min
SectionDocumentaries Open Debates
Focus: Cinema by Migrants/Cinema on Migrants
ScreeningSaturday 9 November | 15:15 hours | Filmhuis Den Haag

On the brink of adulthood, beautiful Somalian Kafia breaks free from everything she grew up with. A poetic and captivating journey of a refugee in today’s Hungary, learning to adapt to her new life. The screening will be followed by Q&A with the director Dorottya Zurbó.


Kafia is 17 years old. Two years ago she fled to Europe escaping from a child marriage in Somalia. She has been living in a state children’s home in Budapest ever since. She learns the Hungarian language, goes to high school, prepares for the graduation exam and dreams about a modeling career. On the surface, everything seems fine. However, behind that beautiful and confident appearance lies a heavy heart. Her repetitive daily routine revolves around constant dilemmas and self-doubt about leaving behind her Muslim culture and everything else she grew up with. As she lets the camera get closer to her, the film slowly becomes an intimate confession. What does it mean to break with your past and fully give yourself up to a new life in Europe?

Festivals & Awards (selection)

Locarno Festival, 2018 – Semaine de la Critique (World Premiere) | Sarajevo Film Festival, 2018 – Documentary Competition | HotDocs, Toronto 2019 – Official Selection | Human Rights Film Festival Zurich, 2018 | ZagrebDox, 2019 – Youth Jury’s Special Mention | Movies that Matter Film Festival, 2019 | Millenium International Documentary Festival, 2019

Director’s bio

Dorottya Zurbó (Budapest, 1988) graduated from the first edition of DocNomads Joint Master for which she was awarded full Erasmus Mundus scholarship in Lisbon, Budapest and Brussels. She is also an honours graduate in film theory and history from ELTE, Budapest. Her short films have won several awards and have been screened in many festivals (Doclisboa, Zagrebdox, Jihlava etc.). “Easy Lessons” is her first directorial debut alone supported by the Incubator Program of the Hungarian National Film Fund.