Written 30-01-2011 17:48:11 by Tue Steen Müller
It was one of those evenings that you will never forget – and that Mila Turajlic will never forget. A totally packed Sava Centre in Belgrade gave her a minute long applause for her great work on making the 100 minutes long documentary on Yugoslav film history, ”Cinema Komunisto”, a film that in this and shorter versions will travel the world, to festivals and television companies. It is an enjoyable and informative voyage the young director takes, in film history and in history – back to a country that no longer exists. And with Tito as the main character, a man who loved films, watched film every night, and also wanted to have films made about himself and his greatness in fights against the Germans during WW2. The greatest man, as Orson Welles says in an archive clip from his visit to the country. Hundreds of partisan films were made, we see clips from them and from loads of other Yugoslav films, matched with documentary archive material and interviews and situations from today. All done in a way that is so excellent that it is hard to believe that this was done by a young filmmaker and a young editor (Aleksandra Milovanovic) with many others who were not alive or were kids. But they had the courage, the patience and the skills to research and produce, and the maturity to make a film of that size. Bravo!... and go to their website where a lot is to be learned as I did last night in Belgrade at a magnificent screening for a couple of thousand people:
Written 30-01-2011 11:54:59 by Tue Steen Müller
”Look at this landscape, it makes you want to film it”, he says, Mark Cousins, film historian and writer and with ”The First Film” also a brilliant essayistic filmmaker. With his wonderful Scottish accent, or is it Northern Irish, that is where he comes from, a Belfast boy he calls himself, he takes the audience on a journey to Kurdistan in Iraq, to Goptopa, where atrocities happened in the 80’es, but this is not what makes Cousins go there, no, he wants to meet children, challenge their imagination and have them express themselves. Verbally and through small cameras that he brought along.
Cousins, his text (hello film teachers, this is how a voice-off text should be) and his visual embracement of a beautiful, yet haunted place on earth, is enjoyable to watch and also to listen to, as Cousins also dares to put on music that comes from the classical repertory and not from the more obvious, and because of that maybe kliché-filled local Kurdish. He is constantly fighting the clichès, he wants to take this film - this hymn to childhood and imagination and to the power of film - as far away as possible from what we normally associate when the name of the country is mentioned.
”There is magic everywhere”, Cousins says and proves with his camera. We meet the children, we see them watch films that the film crew brought along, we see the clips they made, all these wonderful wee boys and girls from Goptopa. It is one long hug with pauses in text and dialogue, where you are invited to enjoy.
Scotland, 76 mins. Producer Gil Parry, 2009
Seen in Belgrade at Magnificent7, clips from the film are available online.
Written 29-01-2011 09:40:36 by Tue Steen Müller
If you click 48 on this site, you will have numerous hits. The film of Susana de Sousa Dias has been given many postings for its innovative, artistic exploration of the documentary language. It was one of the first films to be reserved for the 7th edition of the Magnificent7 festival here in Belgrade. It had to be shown at a festival that carries the name ”magnificent”.
At a masterclass for young filmmakers and art students the filmmaker brilliantly analysed her work of making the film during many years. She had met some of the characters in connection with her previous film, Still Life, also about the dark years of the Salazar regime, a film without words, where 48 (the number of years that the dictatorship existed) is based on words, i.e. the touching verbal memories of the tortured in Portugal and in the Portuguese colonies in Africa.
de Sousa Dias constantly used the expression ”to get inside the shot” through the use of reframing, slow motion of the images, and fade-out’s and fade-in’s. The faces change via the use of tiny camera movements when the filming is done. She explained how she had done the interviews with the prisoners, and had spent hours and weeks in the editing of the words to find the liniarity and homogene tone that makes the film so extraordinary. In many cases she is keeping small sighs as sound accompanied by the original background sound from when the interviews were made. Her brother, a composer, helped her create the space, including the silences, that made the film a FILM.
For professional gatherings and film schools who want to have a fascinating look into the world of filmmaking, I can only recommend you to book Susana de Sousa Dias and her films for exciting lecturing and brilliant films.
Written 29-01-2011 00:12:50 by Sara Thelle
Janus Metz’s Armadillo has now been running in theatres in France for over 6 weeks and can still be seen on the big screen around the country until mid-March. So far, the film (originally put out in 26 copies December 15th) has had an audience of 12.570.
According to Distrib Films, the French distributor, who has been very pleased with working with the film, the number of entries does not quite give justice to the success of the film. The film has been showed in important cinemas all over France, is still out there circulating and there has been a lot of positive feedback. The press coverage has been very good, most of the reviews concerned with the moral ambiguity of the film in connection with form, style and content.
Distrib Films is preparing a DVD and Blue-ray release in France for the end of April.
Here are some of the reactions from the French press (my translations and mostly my italics):
Eric Libio, L’Express, December 15th 2010:
“ (…) Armadillo left a deeper impression than imagined at first. […] Fiction or reality? It wasn’t clear to me at the time and this uncertainty added to the slight vagueness, obviously intentional from the director’s part, that positions the viewer not only at the heart of a conflict –literally speaking- but also confronts him or her with the force of the true but nevertheless dramatized images, drawing Armadillo towards a hybrid genre that seeks to replace television reportage, having become unreal – a war, it’s far away and it’s the others – with a documentary sufficiently romanesque [novelistic] to provoke a powerful effect of reality.
Read more / Læs mere
Written 27-01-2011 18:16:32 by Tue Steen Müller
Cinema Komunisto, the documentary about Yugoslav film history, made by young Serbian film director Mila Turajlic, had its international premiere at idfa in Amsterdam a couple of months ago – and will have its national premiere on sunday at the Sava Centre in Belgrade as part of the Magnificent7 festival.
The director can meet her national audience – more than a thousand people are expected to come – with the confidence given to her yesterday where the film was awarded as Best Documentary at the Trieste Film Festival.
Written 27-01-2011 17:46:54 by Tue Steen Müller
The festival opened with an image of Nénette, the more than 40 years old orangutang that since the age of 3 has been living in a zoo in Paris. A close up of someone looking at you and another beautiful film by Nicholas Philibert, whose name here in Serbia is written as it is pronounced: Filiber.
Who is a director who talks wonderfully and inspiringly about his métier, in this case about a film that started as a short film of around 20 minutes but ended up as a feature length documentary that has been released theatrically in several countries and is soon published on dvd.
”I had totally free hands”, Filiber said in a masterclass for young filmmakers, ”I had no money for the filming, so there was no pressure on me... it is a film about face to face, about our voyerism, about ”the other”. Nénette is a metaphor for ”the other”. We can’t help comparing with her.”
Filiber had some principles that he followed. Sound and image were separated. The camera stays on Nénette and her fellow apes, and are accompanied by 3 types of voices: visitors (several children), keepers and friends, who reflect on several aspects of our relationship to the ape. The sound is important for the film, Filiber said, ”and the silence speaks for her solitude”. He had 10 days of shooting (Nénette wakes up at 8.30am and goes to sleep at 6pm at night), and ”I started with the editing of the sound.” Filiber showed clips from his previous films, ”Le moindre des choses” (photo) and ”La ville Louvre” and mentioned several times how important it is for him to keep his ignorance and work from curiosity and questions. ”I dont want to know anything in beforehand, if I do, then why make the film? All is built on encounters and I only film what people give to me”.
The films of Nicholas Philibert are available on dvd. He has been written about on this blog numerous times.
Written 26-01-2011 15:27:30 by Allan Berg Nielsen
For mig findes begrebet dokumentarfilm ikke. Jeg oplever selv, at jeg laver film om, hvordan tingene skulle kunne tænkes at være, ikke om hvordan de er… (Nina Hedenius)
I FOF filmklubben i aften skal vi se Naturens gång af Nina Hedenius. Det bliver en usædvanlig oplevelse, en udfordring for nogen af os, en ren befrielse for andre. ”Naturens gång”, det kan ikke helt siges på dansk. Det er vist en mellemting mellem ”livets gang” og ”naturens orden”. Og i hvert fald dækker det filmens indhold, mærker man, selv om man er uden for det svenske sprog. Det er en film om liv og tid og bevægelse, en tænksom, ordløs overvejelse i billeder.
Det handler også om natur og kultur. Kort inde i filmen er der en uforglemmelig scene, et interiør fra den gamle gård, som er filmens centrale location, man hører en nyhedsudsendelse i radioen, erindres om, at der er en verden uden for middagssøvn og fred i bondens hyggelige stue. Under en workshop for unge filmfolk i Beograd for et årstid siden viste Nina Hedenius citat-klip fra sine tidligere film og røbede, at dette radiouddrag i den nye film fra 2009 med en rapport om israelske bombardementer i det sydlige Libanon er nøjagtigt det samme som et radiouddrag monteret tilsvarende i hendes film Vintersaga fra engang i 1970’erne. ”Ingen overhovedet har reageret, sagde Hedenius, som i sine film fuldstændigt afholder sig fra sociale og politiske temaer, således at man kun kan forstå dette tyve år gamle lydklip som en spidsfindig kommentar til udenrigspolitik som sådan!”
Det er Tue Steen Müller, som fortæller denne historie. Det er ham, som har gjort opmærksom på filmen, som han ikke tøver med at kalde et mesterværk. Han har skaffet dvd-kopien til os fra den serbiske filmfestival sidste vinter, hvor Naturens Gång blev modtaget med begejstring.
En begejstring så stor som de svenske seeres, som fik filmen sendt første gang 1. juledag 2008. Leif Furhammar skrev i sin yderst positive anmeldelse i Dagens Nyheter, at det var ”…julhelgens märkvärdigaste satsning… Filmen er den enda av dette årets julfilmer som skulle komma att gå til tevehistorien.”
Selv siger Hedenius om sin film: ”Konflikten mellan det goda mänskliga inom var och en av oss och hur det krockar med samhällsmaskineriet, har alltid förundrat mig. Hur kommer det sig att vi i detta välfärdssamhälle känner så starkt att något har gått snett på vägen? Vi tycks ha tappat förmågan att vörda och vårda det viktiga i livet; naturen och hela det känsliga ekosystemet.”
Nina Hedenius: Naturens Gång, Sverige 2008, 108 min. Manuskript, fotografi og klip: Nina Hedenius. Produktion Nina Hedenius for SVT2. Filmografi, de mest berømte titler: Det speglar i mitt öga, 1992, Gubben i Stugan, 1996, Från Sverige i tiden, 2000, Konsten att städa, 2003, Naturens Gång, 2008. I hvert fald Gubben i stugan og Naturens gång kan købes over nettet.
Written 25-01-2011 11:18:21 by Tue Steen Müller
It is below zero but sunny here in snow-white Belgrade where the 7th edition of the Magnificent 7 European feature length documentary festival kicks off tonight with two opening films on the programme: ”Nenette” (Photo) by French veteran master Nicholas Philibert and ”Blood in the Mobile” by Danish Frank Piasecki Poulsen. The organisers, Svetlana and Zoran Popovic, filmmakers themselves and teachers at their own film school Kvadrat, are welcoming the guests and the audience in the usual atmosphere of warm hospitality and generosity that is also conveyed by their young staff of filmmakers. As part of the selection team I was interviewed yesterday and asked why the audience seems to be growing from year to year. Yes, why, well first of all because of the reputation of the festival to bring quality to the audience – and because of the (overall?) interest in the creative documentary that is also evident here. It is cool to watch documentaries and to talk about them.
And it even more cool to meet people who have attended all editions of the festival and who remember a film shown 5-6-7 years ago.
Must be a sign of quality of the film in question. For that reason and to celebrate the 7th edition the organisers made a competition where Magnificent7 afficionados could vote for which film they would like to have screened again. The three winners – to be screened this coming sunday – were ”Pianomania” by Lilian Frank and Robert Gibis, Anna Bucchetti’s ”Dreaming by Numbers” and ”Black Sun” by Gary Tarn.
Written 21-01-2011 15:32:20 by Tue Steen Müller
Two days ago the programme of the festival part of the DocsBarcelona was published, see site below or click on the links of the following press release:
DocsBarcelona is back in full force between 2 and 6 February 2011, with extended activities that are not to be missed.
Without a doubt, the most important novelty of this year’s celebration is that DocsBarcelona is now a competitive festival. Discover the awards here.
The Festival will be opening with a screening of the powerful film by Luc Côté and Patricio Henríquez, You Don't Like the Truth. 4 Days Inside Guantánamo (PHOTO), on Wednesday, 2 February at 7:00 pm at the Cinemes Girona. Discover the images of the Canadian police interrogations of an arrested youth in Guantánamo.
Among our other new features are two new sections: Finisterrae, with films that present new audiovisual languages, and DocsAffairs, with works that breach the borders between the documentary and investigative journalism.
These new areas have been added on to the sections that we have always offered, making for an array of 42 films, with debates and conferences of the very highest order. Particularly worthy of note is the special Le Dernier Repas, which this year is led by Peter Greenaway. Yet not to be forgotten are the first works of today’s up-and-coming filmmakers, which can be seen in Doc!Doc!Doc!, the South American creations of the D’America section, the tributes to Catalan productions in Catalan Day, the sessions for schoolchildren and youths, 7-11 and 12-16, and the more recent Panorama and Historia sections, which will open up a window to the most incredible reality.
Note: Several of the films have been reviewed or noted on this site: Armadillo, Steam of Life, Chemo, You don't Like the Truth, Enemies of the People. Reports from the festival and the industry part of DocsBarcelona will be posted by Tue Steen Müller, who selected the Panorama section of the festival and is Head of the Pitching session.
Written 18-01-2011 14:39:51 by Allan Berg Nielsen
Steffen Moestrups programserie på DR4 "Danske dokumentarister" fortsætter i den kommende tid med følgende afsnit:
Nicole N. Horanyi 23. januar 14:30 (genudsendelse)
Jesper Ravn (FOTO) 23. januar 18:30
Mikala Krogh 27. januar 18:00
Andreas Møl Dalsgaard 30. januar 14:00
Written 16-01-2011 17:47:14 by Tue Steen Müller
Next week’s Dokumania on Danish DR2 this coming tuesday at 9pm, prime time, is the film about American Photography icon Annie Leibovitz, reviewed on this site.
If you can not watch Danish television and want to update your knowledge about Leibovitz, go to this Google collection.
Written 15-01-2011 15:48:28 by Tue Steen Müller
... i København er "The Parking Lot Movie", se min anmeldelse nedenfor. Filmen vises fra 18. januar - 23, januar, én forevisning dagligt. Hurra for dette fine initiativ, som siges at være en succes med hensyn til antal tilskuere.
Written 15-01-2011 15:29:54 by Tue Steen Müller
At the end of the film a song comes up – called ”Life in a Nutshell” – which is exactly what the director of this classic observational and interview born documentary aims it to be. It takes place in Charlottesville in Virginia, and moves barely out from the lot. Only when there are interview bites with those who were there as parking lot guards and later have left for something else and more profitable. They look back at a place in the city, and a place in their lives, that had and has its own importance as free space for different characters and reflections. Some of them are so-called ”unemployable misfits”, who basically do not want to leave and if they do, they come back, and some of them are now in fine positions out there in the society.
They sit in the small booth, taking the payment from the clients, most of the time in a good chatting atmosphere, with exceptions where the guards have to run after people who try to get away without paying. After f... word debates between the driver and the guard.
... overeducated people people, they say about themselves ”with time to think about it”. It being Life, and love and fun and sorrow, as most of them come from the university nearby.
It is quite fun, and get sometimes deep with the characters, because of their quirky personalities. There are good sequences to look at, and it is an interesting microcosmos that has been caught. But it is not very interesting to look at, as goes for many American documentaries after Michael Moore. Could have been great to see some visual interpretation of the theme of Life, of waiting, of helping each other. But enjoy the fun part of it, the observations of the booth and the poems on the wall.
(A film like that makes me think how different American and European documentaries are, in general. Something went wrong, Albert Maysles, Pennebaker and Leacock – they have forgotten to SEE, they just record...)
USA, 2010, 74 mins.
Written 14-01-2011 23:34:15 by Tue Steen Müller
Loyal readers of filmkommentaren will know that both bloggers have a faible for this yearly festival in Paris – next year the dates are March 24 – April 5. Today the programme was announced in overall terms and the appetite to go there came back immediately. Here is a copy of the text that tells what to expect:
International Competition / First Films / French Contre-Champs / Shorts A selection of some forty international and French films that have in the main never been screened, with special focus on the films’ documentary writing and ethics. Encounters and debates with their filmmakers.
Dedication and workshop : Andrei Ujica The Rumanian filmmaker revisits his Trilogy centred on the end of the Communist world : The Autobiography of Nicolae Ceausescu (2010) / Out of the Present (1995) / Videograms of a Revolution, with Harun Farocki (1992).
Dedication and workshop : Gianfranco Rosi A regular visitor to the festival (awarded the 2009 Grand Prix for his film Below Sea Level), Gianfranco Rosi
Read more / Læs mere
Written 13-01-2011 08:29:28 by Allan Berg Nielsen
Det handler om jordskælvet i Haiti for nøjagtigt et år siden, og det handler om to, som mirakuløst overlevede, den ene, Jens Tranum Kristensen ved sin egen ufattelige viljestyrke og held, den anden, Jørgen Leth ved sin tjeners resolutte indgriben og held. Tranum Kristensens skarptskårne beretning i én lang optagelse, som støttes af arkivbilleder og en serie rekonstruerede vignetter, er klippet sammen med Jørgen Leths rejse tilbage og hans kloge og ærlige refleksion, som ofte glider over i en slags tilføjelse til fortællerstemmen, Plejdrups må man tro. Det er elementerne.
Som Plejdrups tidligere dokumentar er denne en omhyggeligt velordnet reportage, og den kommer oven i købet et anseligt skridt videre, vokser til et egentligt filmessay (eller tv-essay skulle man måske skrive) om det stærke menneskes møde med rædslen, det reflekterende menneskes møde med den ekstreme katastrofe. Plejdrup skildrer det usentimentalt, men følsomt, personligt og ikke spor nyfigent privat. De to berømte medvirkende er ikke fremstillet som interessante privatpersoner, faktisk heller ikke Jørgen Leth, som jo selvfølgelig fylder meget, begge er udelukkende brugt som dækkende medvirkende i en dokumentarisk overvejelse. Som er Plejdrups.
Dokumentarens afgørende styrke er disse to stærke medvirkende, som begge yder deres professioners allerbedste, embedsmanden Tranum Kristensens klare, beslutsomme rationalitet, digteren og journalisten Jørgen Leths indgribende tøven og voldsomme vrede begrundet i omfattende viden om det ulykkelige og mishandlede Haiti.
Michael Plejdrup: Da jorden skælvede, Danmark 2011. DR Dokumentar. Sendt i aftes på DR1. Genudsendes 21. januar 2011 09:30 og 3. februar 2011 23:30. Michael Plejdrup filmografi: Et liv på kanten, 2010, Da jorden skælvede, 2011.
Written 11-01-2011 15:05:02 by Tue Steen Müller
Loznitsa (b.1964 in USSR (Belarus)) (photo) is one of the gurus at the European film festival circuit. Respected for his film language and for his extraordinary use of archive material. His last film is ”My Joy”, a fiction film, the first in that genre from the director.
IndieLisboa (January 13-16) offers a complete retrospective of the director’s work – apart from the fiction film, 3 feature duration and 8 short documentary films: The retrospective begins with the screening of My Joy, the first fiction and the most recent film of the director. The rest of his 11 films (3 features and 8 short films), all documentaries, produced between 1996 and 2008, will be screened during the four days: Today We Are Going to Build a House (1996), Life, Autumn (1998), The Train Stop (2000), Settlement (2001), Portrait (2002), Landscape (2003), Factory (2004), Blockade (2005), Artel (2006), Northern Light (2008), Revue (2008). The director will be in Lisbon to present and discuss his work.
To get a taste of the style and themes of Sergei Lotnitsa’s film oeuvre, and I use that word, as he is a real auteur, you can visit his own website, a small piece of art in itself. Here you also can find trailers from his work. As you can on the equally excellent site of Institute of Documentary Film (click on the titles).
My personal favourite is ”Blockade” about the 900 days siege of Leningrad during WW2. 3 of his films are available on the vod platform DocAlliance: ”Artel”, ”Landscape” and ”Portrait”.
Written 11-01-2011 00:10:11 by Tue Steen Müller
Der er allerede skrevet meget om dette tv-program. Er det rigtigt at sende det nu, hvor en valgkamp er i gang, for det vil kunne gavne statsministerens nyvundne popularitet. Osv. Osv. Her på filmkommentaren vinkles der anderledes. Vi ser ikke alene på hvad , men også på hvordan. Derfor nævner vi som regel i overskriften, hvem der har været instruktør eller tilrettelægger. Det gør vi ikke i dette tilfælde, for der var ingen instruktion eller tilrettelæggelse. Ingen. Krediteringens navn skal ikke frem. Navnebeskyttelse! Fotograferingen var slasket, arkivindslagene var tilfældige, klipningen elendig, der blev hoppet fra sted til sted. Uden idé. Uden struktur. Vi så statsministerens kone og datter blive interviewet, vi så dem rende rundt efter et par hundehvalpe, lave frikadeller, nej, jeg standser her. Det var utåleligt banalt og utåleligt banalt fortalt, klasket sammen er et bedre ord. Lad mig så lige minde om at det banale kan hæves til et kunstnerisk niveau, det har DR selv gjort igen og igen, da der var en DR-Dokumentarafdeling, der turde satse på billedet og billedfortællingen. Med inspiration bl.a. fra de herrer, der stod bag nedenfor nævnte film som ”Primary”.
Jeg har lige læst at Arne Notkin, ansvarlig for DR2, synes at det var en god historie. Jamen, har manden da helt mistet sansen for kvalitet. Eller er han uvidende om tv-dokumentaren, ser han ikke de udmærkede ”Dokumania”er, som bliver bragt på hans kanal. Mediedirektøren Mikael Kamber bør kalde sin kanalchef til kammeratlig samtale.
2011, 25 min. DR2
Written 10-01-2011 20:32:47 by Tue Steen Müller
The trade magazine Realscreen – that calls itself ”the best in non-fiction" – announces the American HBO’s upcoming slate of documentaries. Two interesting documentaries are to be broadcasted, made by well-known documentarians – they deal with JFK and Ronald Reagan.
Veteran Robert Drew launches ”A President to Remember: In the company of John F. Kennedy” that premieres January 20 and is based on footage, among others, from the cinema verité classics ”Primary” (1960) and ”Crisis” (1963). And younger Eugene Jarecki, who made the critical ”The Trial of Henry Kissinger” (2002) and the intelligent ”Why we Fight” (2005) which was characterised as a film about the ”anatomy of the American war machine”, has made a film with the title ”Reagan” to be aired on what would have been the late president’s birthday, February 7.
All mentioned titles are available on dvd's. Easy to google where to find them.
Written 09-01-2011 08:43:43 by Allan Berg Nielsen
At tænke sig: Dette kan ses! Som det hedder i den aldeles beherskede speak, kræver det imidlertid at nærme sig denne verden med den yderste tålmodighed. Filmen er ren tålmodig venten på, at det sker. Og det sker! I scene efter scene folder denne mig ukendte verden sig ud, vildt forbavsende og fuld af blid og brutal og grusom skønhed. Det er en vidunderlig film.
Vi er i insekternes verden, nede i øjenhøjde, i den verdens landskab og skala, en enkelt gang endog inde i myrernes pov (så lidt som noget andet i denne film overdrives dette greb), kun enkelte optagelser fra vor verdens landskab orienterer os, før vi atter forsvinder ned til macrooptikkens scener af mesterligt kameraarbejde: edderkoppens indpakning af sin fangst med rædselsvækkende elegance, myrernes slæbearbejde med byggematerialer i en for os uoverskuelig logistik, en blank skinnende skarabæ triller en mange gange den større gødningkugle af sted til sit forråd, er uheldig, triller den fast på en grenspids. Billen undersøger sagen, afprøver forskellige muligheder, lykkes til sidst ved fra modsatte side at sætte skuldrene imod kæmpekuglen. Aldrig glemmer man dette dyrs ihærdige og intelligente indsats. Musikken er både en hyldest til fotografiet og en kongenial medtolkning, lyrisk, når to vinbjergsnegles langsomt prøvende berøringer af hinanden før parringen ved musikken bliver til operahøjdepunkt, når et tusindbens beslutsomme fremfærd ved trommespillerens diskrete rytme bliver til et tog gennem dalen, til mild humor. Det er så pragtfuldt og stort, hvad Dokumania-redaktionen bringer ind i min stue.
Claude Nuridsany og Marie Pérennov: Microcosmos - Le peuple de l'herbe, Frankrig, 1996. Sendt i Dokumania på DR2 i går. Tidligere sendt 4. januar. Forhåbentlig har DR2 rettigheder til et par visninger mere. Og Carsten Olsen: køb den til Filmstriben, den er en evig klassiker, denne generations Bæverdalen, mindst! (Min kollega Tue Steen Müller gør dog i den forbindelse opmærksom på, at filmen i sin fulde længde pt. kan ses på Dokumanias hjemmeside, at en dansk version på dvd er til at købe og har været det længe. En vhs-kopi eller måske dvd befinder sig i samlingen på Videoteket i Filmhuset, København og kan ses der. En fransk version på dvd kan lånes på biblioteket.) Claude Nuridsany og Marie Pérennov filmografi: Microcosmos, 1996, Genesis, 2004.
Written 08-01-2011 10:40:02 by Allan Berg Nielsen
Jeg vil slutte mig til Ekkos efterlysning i går af denne vigtige film. Arne Notkin vil ikke vise filmen på DR2 lige nu, skønt DR har været med til at finansiere den. Det samme har DFI, men derfra holder man den ikke tilbage, meddeler Claus Ladegaard, så det er ikke nogen koordineret afvisning. Efter Nationalfilmografien er filmen da også på filmstriben.dk. Det samme meddeler bibliotek.dk, men, men det viser sig, at på filmstriben.dk er den faktisk kun tilgængelig for skoler med særlig kode og adgang. Nu, hvor vi er i kontakt med Carsten Olsen på DFI (se hans bemærkning i højre spalte), må jeg spørge ham, om han ikke godt vil gøre filmen tilgængelig på Filmstriben for os almindelige bibliotekslånere også? Nu vi for alvor er blevet nysgerrige. Hvad vi venter på, kan man se et veloplagt klip med den kontroversielle Norman Finkelstein (FOTO) illustrere på You Tube.
Så godt som muligt i min position har jeg fulgt Yoav Shamir fra hans Checkpoint (2003), som imponerede mig og berørte mig dybt til Flipping Out (2007), som skuffede mig en del. Det har jeg skrevet om her på siden. Også på den baggrund er jeg spændt på Defamation (2009), der tilsyneladende kaster lys over hele Shamirs filmiske metode og kritiske værk, som i den grad bør være tilgængeligt i dansk version. Som værk. Som DR2's Israel serie også omtalt i Ekkos artikel.
Written 07-01-2011 14:09:11 by Tue Steen Müller
Lad os gøre lidt reklame for DR K, Danmarks Radio digitale kulturkanal. Som ser ud til at være ved at finde sin programprofil. I går aftes så jeg – se nedenfor – Stan Neumanns film fra 2009 om det surrealistiske fotografi, som genudsendes flere gange, hvilket mange af dokumentarprogrammerne og – filmene gør. Bagefter så jeg en glimrende hollandsk dokumentar om Sarkozys planer om et Grand Paris.
På vej er en fin dokumentar om Wallenberg-familien, i to dele, og på søndag aften kan ses et gedigent portræt af den polske filmkomponist Krzysztof Komeda. Omtalt på dette site.
En del kan også ses på site’t, bl.a. professor Ib Bondebjergs forelæsninger om tre dokumentarister, radioens Christian Kryger og tv-mestrene Poul Martinsen og Lars Engels.
... ikke at forglemme de mange gode spillefilm, som kanalen sender. Nu er der en kavalkade på vej med Charlotte Rampling, bl.a. vises Natportieren, hvor hun spiller mesterligt op til Dirk Bogarde.
Hjemmesiden er i øvrigt forbilledlig klar og attraktiv, se selv.
Foto: På plakaten ses den svenske skuespiller Per Oskarsson i hovedrollen i Henning Carlsens "Sult". Æret være hans minde.
Written 07-01-2011 13:32:36 by Tue Steen Müller
The Czech born, based in Paris, director Stan Neumann is a real auteur, who has been working a lot for the French-German cultural channel arte as one of the directors trusted by Thierry Garrel, when he was leading the arte Unité Documentaire. Neumann made two masterpieces, ”Language does not Lie” and ”A House in Prague” (the first one written about on this site) but apart from that he has been behind a huge series on Architecture and he has made a lot of documentaries for the television channel on visual arts.
One of them is a 2009 production on the surrealistic photography made in cooperation with the Centre Pompidou in Paris. It is one of those playful visual lectures that with an excellent commentary introduces you to not only the famous surrealists Man Ray (Photo of the legendary Kiki de Montparnasse), Salvador Dali and André Breton, but also to Dora Maar and Alvarez Bravo. You are entertained and informed, well you learn something when Neumann puts one photo after the other to our vision and manipulates the framing to make us wiser.
I watched it on the Danish digital channel for culture dr K.
France, 26 mins.
Written 06-01-2011 17:06:14 by Tue Steen Müller
The Czech Embassy has asked filmkommentaren.dk to announce the screening of one part of the extraordinary documentary series by Lukas Pribyl, previously praised on this site. We do so with pleasure by re-posting the review from 2009 below.
The screening of the film Forgotten Transports to Estonia takes place in Husets Biograf in Copenhagen January 26. The screening is one of many events in connection with the Danish Auschwitz-Day (January 27 – the day in 1945 where Auschwitz was liberated by Soviet troops).
More information about the screening: Consulate_Copenhagen@mzv.cz
The review: What an achievement! I don’t recall, when was the last time that I witnessed so captivating a historical documentary, here told by Czech Jewish survivors of the holocaust. They were interviewed between 2000-2006 by Lukas Pribyl, the researcher, writer and director behind the four 90 minutes long films that share the same title, ”Forgotten Transports”, with the adding of where the transports went: ”to Latvia”, ”to Estonia”, ”to Belarus”, ”to Poland”. (The photo represents the "Estonian "Czech Girls"" in "to Estonia").
Put together in a clearly edited non-sensationalistic chronological structure each of the four films takes the viewer on a journey from Czekoslovakia to the ghettos in the countries mentioned and from there to camps – concentration camps, extermination camps. Or to be more precise: the survivors take the viewer with their personal stories, told with shocking and moving details, but also with humour. Watching the film you wonder how it was possible for these people to continue living after they (most of them) lost their families and were so close to the most horrifying brutality and death in circumstances beyond description.
But the film director does so in a way that deserves all respect. All archive material – moving or still images, much of it I guess shown for the first time – are connected to the places, events and time that the storytellers refer to. Discreetly a text is placed in the frame giving the information of name of person talking, or the place we are taken to. With the addition of private photos of the survivors as young people, as well as the killed relatives or friends, or the German SS people and camp superiors. This is not a film about the 2nd WW, there is not a single word from Hitler, there is not a single reconstruction, it is totally based on what human beings remember from their childhood and youth. Put together in four films that are different as their fates were different, some timesvery hard to watch and listen to, some times you smile. It is about Czech Jews but the stories have an universal appeal.
The musical score also deserves a mention for its high quality. Peter Ostrouchov avoids all film music klichés and pushes for sentimentality, for me his music places the viewer in a state of reflection.
Written 06-01-2011 09:30:09 by Tue Steen Müller
DocsBarcelona (February 1-6) is under preparation. But today the staff is not working. Last night Executive Producer Elena Subirà I Roca explained in three filmic scenes how Nit de Reis is performed in Catalunya, and she sent a cell phone photo of the arrival of the Three Wise Men
Tonight is Magic! Excitement all over. Kids not being able to sleep after saluting and seeing the three wise men with all their charm and luxury arround! In St. Cugat, where I come from, they arrive in a helicopter and jump to their carriages! There are real camels!!!!
Parents leaving out glasses of champagne and sweets in the sitting room for the three men to have something to eat when they come in with the presents, and water and bread crumbs for the camels so they can recocver from exhaustion.
Tomorrow morning: empty glasses, no sweets or crumbs left and loads of presents under the tree!! And a tour to all the family houses to pick even more presents!
Written 05-01-2011 07:59:06 by Allan Berg Nielsen
Tue Steen Müller and Allan Berg, the bloggers of this filmkommentaren.dk met during the holidays and agreed to make a list of films that have stayed in our minds. We have picked films that have been reviewed or noted on this site during 2010. Here follow the titles in alphabetical order, with a smart-link that will bring you to the longer text. We wish our readers a Happy New Year.
.. the tiny light changes in the photos of the prisoners, the refined sound design, the almost imperceptible camera movements, a characterisation of anger and dignity at the same time
.. a character driven, informative and creative investigation into the conflict between man and nature, between business and environment, between profit and social security
.. the uncovering of the professionalised, raw and brutal internal jargon, the culture of soldiers in battle
.. the close-up conversations between patients, the human ability to find beauty in difficult moments
.. the slow blocking of an apartment window for building of a wall, the leaving of a happy family time, the impossible peace between Israelis and Palestinians
.. the eyes of the many naked women, their gazes, which all mirror the memory of a fine lover, female erotica
.. two men in an apartment in Paris, trying to get rid of furniture and clothes from a time that is no longer there, preparing for the final farewell
.. maybe THE biggest of them all, sitting old and mentally confused on his hospital bed watching football on television, it’s over
.. the small child on a chair in a Russian kitchen reciting Pushkin, the soul of Russia
Way of Nature (PHOTO)
.. a farmer sleeping on his couch with a dog on his belly, radio report from Israeli bombing of Lebanon, harmony and no disturbance from outside world
Written 04-01-2011 12:07:04 by Tue Steen Müller
The website of the 7th European Feature Documentary Film Festival is up and running. You can now see what films have been selected by Svetlana and Zoran Popovic, and me, to be screened from January 25 to 29 at the Sava Center in Belgrade. With the presence, in most cases, of the director.
Opening film is by the master Nicolas Philibert, ”Nenette” (PHOTO), followed by ”Blood in the Mobile” by Frank Piasecki Poulsen, who is the first director to be invited to M7 for the second time, ”Guerilla Girl” being the first to be shown in Belgrade. ”48” is the masterpiece by Susana de Sousa Dias, after that comes the essay by film critic and director Mark Cousins ”The First Movie”, the serious comedy ”Men Who Swim” by Dylan Williams, the beautiful music and dance film by Gasnier and Nezan ”Zanzibar Musical Club” and finally Serbian premiere of ”Cinema Komunisto” by Mila Turajlic.
I have on filmkommentaren.dk year after year praised the festival and its mini format and called it a personal highlight to sit in a cinema and watch a documentary together with 1200 other people. It is indeed, so if you have time and can afford a travel to exciting Belgrade and experience a unique hospitality and atmosphere... GO.
If you are a young filmmaker you can join the workshop that takes place every day. All invited filmmakers meet young colleagues to tell about their way of filmmaking. Two intense hours with the possibility of putting questions and getting answers.
It is all an hommage to documentary filmmaking. Below you can read my welcome words published on the website.
Written 04-01-2011 12:02:50 by Tue Steen Müller
Welcome to this special edition number seven! Did we really have 7 editions, that means 49 films including those of this year. Wow... And we have had almost full houses in the Sava Centre during most of the years! And wherever I go and meet filmmakers who have been here, they remember with smiling eyes how it was to be at the festival in an atmosphere full of generosity and the chance to meet colleagues and have some intense moments together. For one who is a frequent flyer to events all over – to come to Belgrade every year is pure pleasure.
As it is to take part in the selection process. From going to the post office in Copenhagen with some dvd’s in an envelope, have them sent to Belgrade and wait for the reaction from the Magnificent7 Head Quarter resided at the Popovic’s. The responses are always very polite and nice, but also precise and analytical and critical, and always with a fine humanistic approach to the films.
7 is a magic number. I googled it to find inspiration for this text.... seven days in a week, seven deadly sins, seven virtues, the meaning of the number in different religions and so on. And a mention of “The Seven Samurai”, the film of Kurosawa, the director who also made “Rashomon” where the same event/thing/story is told from different angles.
Maybe this is what we have been doing at Magnificent7 festival? Basically we have told the same Story in 49 films about Life and Death, Joy and Sorrow, Love, Happiness – about the human condition of today. Told from different angles, filtered through different temperaments. That is what documentaries can do, right?
Enjoy the 7M7!
Tue Steen Müller
Photo: Me in October in Belgrade, a still taken in connection with a film shot by Andrijana Stojkovic, "The Box", where she needed someone to play a Danish diplomat!
Written 04-01-2011 11:20:04 by Tue Steen Müller
Hvor kan man se dem, har spørgsmålet altid været, når talen drejer sig om dokumentar- og kortfilm, som jo kun i særlige tilfælde finder vej til biografen. Og hvis de gør, så stort set altid kun i København. Min kollega Allan Berg, bosat i Randers, har gjort opmærksom på, hvordan man via det danske bibliotekssystem kan låne dvd’er og vhs-bånd, og/eller benytte sig af Det danske Filminstituts filmstriben (www.filmstriben.dk), som rummer mere end 700 titler, som kan ses på en computer i hjemmet. Adgangen til filmene bliver nemmere og nemmere – det manglede bare, vi betaler jo for det som skatteborgere i Danmark – og nu annoncerer filminstitutet at Filmhuset i Gothersgade i København har nyindrettet et videotek i bibilioteket. (Tidligere kunne man gå ned i Filmhusets kolde kælder og se film).
3000 titler er tilgængelige ”og udbuddet vokser hele tiden. Film kan søges i databasen Nationalfilmografien, hvor du kan se om en titel findes i Videotekets samling. Når du befinder dig i Videoteket kan mange af vores film ses direkte via et link i Nationalfilmografien. Film der kun forefindes på DVD eller videobånd bestiller du hos bibliotekaren.”
Faktisk har videoteket været I gang I et år, men nu lanceres det for alvor tematisk. En filmserie “Afghanistan i nyere dokumentarfilm” er sammensat, beskrivelser findes på hjemmesiden.
Det er altså bare at møde op med et sygesikringskort og blive registreret som bruger. Åbningstider: tirsdag og torsdag 12-19, onsdag og fredag 12-16.
De fire fotos: ’Smiling in a warzone’ (Simone Aaberg Kærn, Magnus Bejmar); ’Vores lykkes fjender’ (Eva Mulvad); ’Afghan muscles’ (Andreas Møl Dalsgaard) og ’Den hemmelige krig’ (Christoffer Guldbrandsen).
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