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Paola makes a wish

Kazakhstan, Switzerland / 08 min / 2019

"In the beginning there was an orgasm. One way or another, Zhannat’s story always circles back to it: a fleeting moment of pleasure and desire. It’s the desire of sharing something, of making a film on short notice and alongside a Master of cinema Béla Tarr. Or an orgasm, and more specifically the pleasure “past its time” that Zhannat Alshanova wanted to reach with her filmmaking, which was born in the rain in a cold Locarno valley and will soon be a guest of the equally cold Utah sun. Her short film Paola Makes a Wish was selected for the upcoming Sundance Film Festival..."


From Locarno to Sundance, the journey of Pleasure


On an ordinary day at work, Paola starts to feel that she is missing out something exciting in her life








Zhannat Alshanova

Alex Takács

Locarno Film Festival, Ticino Film Commission, CISA

Zhannat Alshanova

Pulsar Studios

Christina Proserpio, Ana Shametaj, Valentina Manzoni


Travelling Distribution

Maud Christine                   

Pierre Brouillette-Hamelin  


  • Official Selection Locarno Film Festival, Switzerland 

  • Official Selection Sundance Film Festival, USA

  • Official Selection Buenos Aires Film Festival, Argentina

  • Official Selection PÖFF Shorts, Estonia

  • Official Selection Regard Festival, Canada

  • Official Selection Method Film Festival, USA

  • Official Selection The Norwegian Short Film Festival, Norway

  • Official Selection ShorTS International Film Festival, Italy

  • Official Selection Sao Paola International Short Film Festival, Brazil

  • Official Selection SediciCorto Film Festival, Italy

  • Official Selection THESS International Short Film Festival, Greece

  • Official Selection FIN Atlantic International Film Festival, Canada

  • Official Selection Lviv International Short Film festival Wiz-Art, Ukraine

  • Official Selection Vladivostok International Film Festival, Russia

  • Official Selection Girls in Film, Czech Republic

  • Official Selection Guanajuato International Film Festival, Mexico

  • Official Selection Kraljevski Filmski Festival, Serbia

  • Official Selection Leeds International Film Festival, UK

  • Official Selection Usak Winged Seahorse Short Film Festival, Turkey

  • WINNER - BEST DIRECTOR Calcutta International Film Festival, India

  • Official Selection Vilnius International Short Film Festival, Lithuania

  • Official Selection Festival International de Films de Femmes de Créteil, France

  • Official Selection International Women Filmmakers Festival, Turkey

  • Official Selection Annual Lesley University Independent Film Festival, UK

  • Official Selection Short Waves Festival, Poland

  • Official Selection Cinema Sisters International Film Festival, USA

  • Official Selection La Fête du Slip, Switzerland

  • Official Selection Basta Fest, Serbia

  • Official Selection Lesley University Independent Film Festival, USA

  • Online - NYUWomxn100 Films in Conversation series, USA

  • Online - VImeo Staff Pick 

  • Online - Short of the week

  • Online - Kinoscope

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