DOCUMENTARY FILM 1 – OPENING FILM
Saturday, 9 October, 7 pm
CHILDREN OF THE ARCTIC
- Barrow in Alaska is the northernmost inhabited place in the USA. Following his debut, ‘Darwin’, Nick Brandestini’s second documentary is about five teenagers whose lives there are just as torn by dramatic cultural and climatic change as the region itself is. While they want to become – and are expected to be – modern US citizens, they also feel attached to their ancestors’ ways of living and coping with a landscape that, inhospitable as it may seem, has been their home for a thousand years. Is there a way to combine both? The powerful traditions of whale and bear hunting, oil drilling on a massive scale just around the corner, a high youth suicide rate, the family bonds they retain – all these concerns make them grow astonishingly mature at a young age. What is the meaning of life, and how should it be lived? An alert and sympathetic film.
- Film data
- Director: Nick Brandestini
Producer: Vesna Eckert
Cinematography: Nick Brandestini
Editing: Nick Brandestini, Taylor Segrest, Vesna Eckert
Sound: Guido Keller
Music: Micheal Brook
Original soundtrack: English
Nick Brandestini is an independent filmmaker based in Zurich, Switzerland. From 1999 to 2002, he was a Producer and Editor for the Swiss music television channel VIVA. His first documentary, Return to Florence (2006), is a portrait of a small group of American and British artists studying classical painting methods at an unconventional art school in Florence. His documentary H.R. Giger’s Sanctuary (2007) is a portrait of the renowned and reclusive Swiss artist H.R. Giger. His latest film, Darwin (2011), about an isolated community in Death Valley, California, played at international film festivals, winning jury and audience awards. It also had a theatrical run in New York, Los Angeles, and Zurich, as well as in numerous cities in Canada.
2007 H. R. Giger’s Sanctury
2006 Return to Florence
- Nick Brandestini, email@example.com, Switzerland
DOCUMENTARY FILM 2
Sunday, 4 October, 6 pm
- Abu Haraz, a small village located in the north of the Sudanese desert, is threatened by plans to build a dam. What’s at stake is no less than a traditional way of life evolved through centuries. Relocation would mean an end to subsistence and the self-sufficiency of the rural community. For several years the filmmakers have accompanied Abu Haraz’s residents in their attempts to avoid their fate. They’ve managed to develop an understanding of what’s going on that rests entirely on pictures and sounds recorded on the scene.
- Film data
- Director: Maciej J. Drygas
Producer: Drygas Production
Screenplay: Maciej J. Drygas
Cinematography: Andrzej Musia
Editing: Rafa Listopad
Music: Pawe Szymaski
Original soundtrack: Polish
Maciej J. Drygas (born in 1956 in Lodz, Poland) is a film and radio director, screenwriter, professor and lecturer at the Polish National Film School in Lodz. After having graduated in 1981 from the Film Directing Dept. of the Cinema Institute in Moscow (VGIK), he worked as an assistant director for Krzysztof Zanussi and Krzysztof Kieslowski. He has won awards at numerous international festivals, including: the Prix Italia in 1992 for the radio documentary My Last Will, a Felix in 1991 for the best documentary film in Europe for Hear My Cry, a Grand Prix in 1995 at the Monte Carlo International Television Festival for the documentary film State Of Weightlessness. Maciej J. Drygas’s films and radio documentaries have been broadcasted by television and radio stations in Europe, Canada, Brazil and Australia.
2011 Violated Letters
2008 Hear us all
2005 A day in People’s Republic of Poland
1994 State of weightlessness
1991 Hear me cry
- Dagmara Marcinek, firstname.lastname@example.org, Poland
DOCUMENTARY FILM 3
Monday, 5 October, 8 pm
A GOAT FOR A VOTE
- How do you learn to act democratically when your society faces violence and corruption on a daily basis? At a school located in Kilifi at the Kenian seaside, students came up with the idea of holding their own presidential election. Enter three candidates: Magdalene, who wants to prove that women can find better ways of living together in a society hitherto dominated by men; Harry, who wants to break free from the social position his poverty-stricken family has left him in; and Said, who commands wealth and eloquence. During two weeks of campaign, we witness the deployment of political speeches, posters, sweets and a specially made commercial. Who’s going to come in first? And is there something to be learnt from the answer?
- Film data
- Director: Jeroen van Velzen
Producer: Hasse van Nunen
Cinematography: Stef Tijdink
Editing: Daan Wijdeveld
Sound: Robil Rahantoeknam
Music: Alex Boy
Original soundtrack: English
Born in 1979 in Heerlen, Jeroen van Velzen moved abroad at the age of 2. He lived a.o. in Kenya, India and South Africa. After high school in England and an orientation year at the Brighton College of Technology (Fine Art), he followed the study documentary direction at the Netherlands Film and Television Academy. In his third year there he made the short film DRIE DUIZEND METER BOVEN DE WOLKEN about his autistic brother Erik. In 2009 he graduated with the film BABA, a documentary about an old man in India who together with his younger brother embarks on an exhaustive pilgrimage. WAVUMBA was Jeroen’s first feature documentary that traveled all over the world and won several prizes. Among the prizes, he won the award for Best New Director at Triceba Film Festival.
2009 Baba. Finding light within
- Renko Douze – Een van de jongens email@example.com
DOCUMENTARY FILM 4
Tuesday, 6 October, 6 pm
MY NAME IS SALT
- For a period of eight months after the Monsoon, thousands of Indian families come to Gujerat to extract salt from the desert soil by means of a sophisticated technique. Director Farida Pacha and cinematographer Lutz Konermann have spent a mining season with one of the families and followed their every move. Their work looks miraculous, yet when they’ve finished, the water comes back and floods the land as if nothing had happened.
- Film data
- Director: Farida Pacha
Country: Switzerland / India
Producer: Leafbird Films GmbH
Original soundtrack: Gurajati
- Magnetfilm GmbH, firstname.lastname@example.org, Germany
DOCUMENTARY FILM 5
Wednesday, 7 October, 6 pm
- AT(H)OME takes us on a trip to the Algerian Sahara desert, where a nuclear test wrought havoc in 1962. Residents still suffer from the damage done. The makers of the film, born in then-opposed countries Algeria and France, have set out together to reconstruct this sinister part of their shared colonial history. Bright-coloured photography, moving snapshots of current life and archive recordings from various eras make for a powerful narrative.
- Film data
- Director: Elisabeth Leuvrey
Producer: Les Ecrans du Large
Cinematography: Amarni, Katell Djian, Zyriab Meghraoui
Editing: Bénédicte Hadjih
Sound: Mehdi Ahoudig
Original soundtrack: Tamaeq
Born in Algiers in 1968, Elisabeth Leuvrey is a graduate from the National Institute of Oriental Languages in Paris. From 1991 to 1998, she worked as Assistant Director to Jean-Luc Léon on films such as The Lapirovs Go West, A Streetcar in Moscow and The Dealers as well as Artists and Collectors.
2013 Oh, tu tires ou tu pointes?
2013 La Traversee
1998 Matti Ke Lal, Fils de la Terre
- Elisabeth Leuvrey, email@example.com, France
DOCUMENTARY FILM 6
Wednesday, 7 October, 8 pm
- An intelligent discourse on agriculture and a fascinating discussion between the filmmaker and a couple of Dutch farmers. Two thousand years ago, the Roman poet Vergil wrote his Georgics, an ode to farming life. Can modern farmers, who access the earth on an industrial scale, still relate to this ancient text? What has changed in their work, what do the soil, the water and the sun’s warmth tell them today? A melancholy and surprisingly attractive film that probes into one of the most essential issues of life: the way we produce the food we eat.
- Film data
- Director: Katelijne Schrama
Producer: Digna Sinke
Cinematography: Ben Geraerts
Editing: Katelijne Schrama
Sound: Alex Booy, Pander Roskam
Music: Gert-Jan Blom
Original soundtrack: Dutch
Katelijne Schrama was born in Biddinghuizen, The Netherlands (1974). She graduated in the summer of 2000 from the audio-visual department of the Gerrit Rietveld Academy in Amsterdam with the short film Daydreams and Sandman. Since then she has worked as a freelance filmmaker for several production companies in the Netherlands as well as director, director’s assistant and editor of documentary films. She directed assignment films for museums (Kunsthal, Royal Tropical Institute, Noord-Brabants Museum) and she also directed company films (ING bank). Katelijne Schrama lives and works in Amsterdam and has recently completed the feature documentary Georgica.
2007 360° Horizon, land without a past
2000 Daydreams and Sandman
- Digna Sinke, firstname.lastname@example.org, Netherlands
DOCUMENTARY FILM 7
Thursday, 8 October, 8 pm
PĂDUREA E CA MUNTELE, VEZI?
The forest is like the mountain
- A friendly relationship between the filmmaker and the residents of a Romanian Gipsy village was the starting point for this film about both the beauty and the hardships of the villagers and their lives. Although their traditional livelihood has been destroyed by and large, they don’t stop trying to live in dignity. At a calm and steady pace, the camera follows their daily routines – collecting wood, working as potato harvesters – and captures their hopes great and small. The film adopts the rhythm of life in the village and makes us sympathise with the concerns and struggles of its protagonists.
- Film data
- Director: Christiane Schmidt, Didier Guillain
Producer: Ferdinand Freising
Cinematography: Christiane Schmidt
Editing: Lena Hatebur
Sound: Didier Guillain
Original soundtrack: Romanian
Christiane Schmidt was born in Lüneburg in 1978 and grew up in Uelzen, Germany.
After residing in different community projects in Ireland and France, she studied Political Science and Science of Art with an emphasis in visual media at the Carl von Ossietzky University in Oldenburg. She worked as a bicycle courier at die Oldenboten and participated in different art and cultural projects in Brussels. In 2013, she gratuated from the University of Televivion and Film (Munich), where she had studied Documentary Film, majoring in Cinematography. Nowadays she is living in Berlin.
Didier Guillain was born in Brussels, Belgium, where he is still living. After working as a physicist, he studied cinema at Insas, Brussels. He works primarily as a cameraman in documentaries and has co-directed two documentaries with Christiane Schmidt. Additionally, he is a Member of Les Renards, a cinema collective.
2008 Comme tout autr humain
2008 Comme tout autre humain
- Didier Guillain, email@example.com, France
DOCUMENTARY FILM 8
Friday, 9 October, 4 pm
AUS EINEM NAHEN LAND
From a nearby country
- A documentary essay in 24 shots taken in Kritzendorf, a small Danube village north-west from Vienna, and its vicinity. The filmmaker’s neighbours, a family named Vitovec, are wine-growers. Their work is hard, and all their activities revolve around it the whole year round. Manfred Neuwirth is an explorer on familiar terrain, but some of his pictures appear as unreal as if he were telling a science-fiction story.
- Film data
- Director: Manfred Neuwirth
Producer: Manfred Neuwirth
Cinematography: Manfred Neuwirth
Editing: Manfred Neuwirth
Sound: Tim Oppermann, Darius Kowalski
Music: Christian Fenesz
Original soundtrack: no dialogue
Manfred Neuwirth, born 1954, is a director, producer and media artist working with films, video, sounds and installations. He is also a lecturer at Kunstuniversität Linz and sees himself as a researcher, archivist, hunter for sounds and gatherer of pictures. His snapshots not only capture personal encounters and journeys, they also refer to the sensual components of the medium. Neuwirth’s pictures and sounds are unbiased by prejudice and open to new perceptions. By picking up on topical political issues and describing how attitudes and societal realities change, he also acts as an ethnographer for his own culture.
2011 scapes and elements
2005 Tibet Revisited
- Manfred Neuwirth, firstname.lastname@example.org, Austria
DOCUMENTARY FILM 9
Friday, 9 OCtober, 10 pm
- Mashti Esmaeil is a blind paddy farmer who prepares his own tea and meals and says his prayers in gratitude. To him, as he says over and over again, life is a gift. Sometimes he will accept help from friends and neighbours, but he makes it very clear that he leads a rich life. A film about labour and gratitude, the troubles of being handicapped, about humour and happiness.
- Film data
- Director: Mahdi Zamanpour Kiasari
Producer: Mahdi Zamanpour Kiasari, Somayyeh Zeraatkar
Cinematography: Hassan Seyedi Parishan, Mahdi Moniri, Davood Rahmani
Editing: Mahdi Hosseinivand
Sound: Mostafa Rahmani
Original soundtrack: Persian
Mahdi Zamanpour Kiasari was born in 1975 and holds a MA in TV production from University of IRIB (Film Directing). He started his career as Director, Writer & Producer in 2004 and has made more than 65 documentaries and TV programs.
- Ali Reza, email@example.com, Iran