2018 Sundance Docs in Focus: A WOMAN CAPTURED

Courtesy of Sundance Institute | photo by Bernadett Tuza Ritter

Bernadett Tuza-Ritter reveals a disturbing case of modern-day slavery in Hungary.

Festival Section:
World Cinema Documentary Competition


Sundance Program Description:

While preparing a project on modern slavery, filmmaker Bernadett Tuza-Ritter uncovers a treacherous story. Inside an upscale Hungarian home run by a tyrannical matriarch resides a domestic slave. At 52 years old, Marish labors 20 hours a day without pay and endures a constant barrage of emotional and physical abuse. For those who see her on the street, it’s impossible to imagine the hell she returns to every day. Eating only scraps from dinners she prepares and receiving cigarettes instead of cash, Marish has forgotten what freedom feels like and lost all will to leave. Until Bernadett enters the scene.

Stepping into an ethical minefield, Bernadett pays off the owners to gain entry and train her camera on Marish. Her presence awakens Marish’s trust and emboldens her to hatch an escape plan. But the stakes are high: Marish is financially indentured, and the authorities refuse to intervene. A WOMAN CAPTURED drops us into a realm rife with chilling questions about human psychology and our own complicity as voyeurs – of Marish’s ordeal and the suffering we witness on screen daily.

Some Background:
Director/Executive Producer/Editor:

  • Bernadett Tuza-Ritter

    With a background primarily in editing, Tuza-Ritter makes her feature directorial debut with this project, which debuted in competition at IDFA this past November.


  • Julianna Ugrin and Viki Réka Kiss

    This marks the first Sundance project for both Ugrin and Kiss.


  • Erik Winker and Martin Roelly

    This is also the first Sundance credit for the Corso Film co-founders, whose past projects have screened at Berlin, Locarno, and DOK Leipzig, among other notable events.

Additional Editor:

  • Nóra Richter

    This is also the first Sundance project for Richter.

Why You Should Watch:
Despite the potentially sensationalistic subject matter, Tuza-Ritter takes a more sensitive and measured approach, slyly revealing the slave mistress’ reprehensible nature and ultimately helping the sympathetic Marish gain the confidence to attempt to change her circumstances.

More Info:

For Sundance screening dates and times, click the film title in the first paragraph.

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Filed under Documentary, Film, Film Festivals, Recommendations, Sundance

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