The River

Film stills

The film takes viewers to Saleninkai village in the neighbourhood of a chemical plant and close to the confluence of Šventoji and Neris rivers. More than two decades ago an accident occurred in the chemical plant and villagers from the opposite river bank were evacuated. Saleninkai were left behind. The remote village is separated from the surrounding world by a river and the soil is still contaminated. There is no ferry, no buses to school, no work. Striving to make their living, villagers shape their lives whose rhythm is set by a river.


Lithuanian Silver Crane Awards 2010 – Best National Documentary Film; Lithuanian Filmmakers Union Prize 2009 – Best Documentary Film; Florence International Documentary FF dei Popoli – Audience Prize; Madrid Documenta festival – First Prize of the Jury; Karlovy Vary International Film Festival – Best Short Documentary Film Award; Riga IFF Arsenals – in competition; Vilnius Documentary FF – Second Prize of the Jury; International Documentary Film Festival ZagrebDox – in competition; Open City London Documentary Festival – in competition.

Julija Gruodienė, Rimantas Gruodis

Julija Gruodienė is a scriptwriter and director born in 1966 in Liauriškės, Lithuania. She graduated from the Vilnius University and worked at the Lithuanian Film Studio as an editor, scriptwriter for newsreels and documentaries (1984-1994), and in Lithuanian TV as an editor and scriptwriter (1994-2002). Since 2002, she works as an independent film scriptwriter and director.




Rimantas Gruodis was born in 1946 in Šiauliai, Lithuania. A Vilnius University graduate in 1977, he worked at the Lithuanian Film Studio as a camera assistant and assistant director on feature films, editor, scriptwriter and director of newsreels and documentaries (1964-1990). Since 1992, he has been working as an independent film director, producer and cameraman. In 1994 he founded production company Periferija. Julija Gruodienė and Rimantas Gruodis have worked on many projects together. Their films screened at various festivals and cinema forums in Europe and the USA, and were broadcasted on Lithuanian and foreign televisions.