One of the most vital filmmakers to emerge from post-war Hungary, Márta Mészáros’s long career has only belatedly been recognised for its political and artistic achievement. Her films often draw on her extraordinary biography – most significantly in her autobiographical “Diary” trilogy, Diary for My Children (1984), Diary for My Lovers (1987), and Diary for My Father and Mother (1990). Although born in Budapest, Mészáros spent her early life in Soviet Kyrgyzstan, where her communist artist parents had emigrated in 1936. Her father, the sculptor László Mészáros, was arrested and killed in 1938 during the Stalinist purges; her mother died six years later. The orphaned Mészáros was raised by a foster mother in Moscow, before returning to Hungary in 1946. Her desire to pursue a filmmaking career took her back to Moscow, where she studied at the prestigious VGIK film school, returning again to Budapest in the wake of the abortive 1956 Revolution. After a decade spent producing documentary shorts, she joined the Máfilm Group 4 studio in the mid-1960s, directing her first feature, The Girl, in 1968. In the process, Mészáros became the first female director in Hungary to make a feature film. Her subsequent films – which include Adoption (1975), The Two of Them (1977), and The Heiresses (1980) – were marked by their focus on political oppression, their use of documentary footage alongside fiction narratives, their attention to the life stories of ordinary citizens, notably women, and their interest in generational divides and traumas.