Jan Gassmann – Europe, She Loves (2016)

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official site wrote:
Four couples struggle on the edge of mother Europe. In countries troubled by economic and social crises they stumble through life with charme, sex and plenty of passion. A movie about the politics of love. In Sevilla JUAN, 21, and CARO, 23, experience the wonder of a young love. However, Juan is without a plan for the life that lies ahead of him and she desperately needs one. SIOBHAN, aged 28, and TERRY, 23, live in Dublin. When they first met they have fallen for love and heroin like other young habitants of this cold weathered town. But now sober for some time, on their way to lead a common life, their passion seems to disappear. In Tallinn, close to the northeastern border of Europe, VERONIKA, a 29 year old go-go dancer, and her partner HARRI, 31, find themselves caught up in the toil of a patchwork family. Her oldest son proves to be a challenge for Veronikas confidence in Harri. She wants him to accept Artur as his own. Meanwhile in Thessaloniki, Greece, PENNY, 23, is about to leave her longtime lover NIKO, 33, to go to work in Italy. But how do you leave someone who loves you too much? Continue reading

Nikolaus Geyrhalter – Homo sapiens (2016)

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Synopsis:
Homo Sapiens is a film about the finiteness and fragility of human existence and the end of the industrial age, and what it means to be a human being. What will remain of our lives after we’re gone? Empty spaces, ruins, cities increasingly overgrown with vegetation, crumbling asphalt: the areas we currently inhabit, though humanity has disappeared. Now abandoned and decaying, gradually reclaimed by nature after being taken from it so long ago. Homo Sapiens is an ode to humanity as seen from a possible future scenario. It intends to sharpen our eyes for the here and now, and our consciousness of the present. Continue reading

Iván Osnovikoff & Bettina Perut – Surire (2015)

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Synopsis
While researching locations for their 2009 film Noticias, documentary filmmakers Bettina Perut and Ivan Osnovikoff stumbled upon Salar de Surire, a salt flat in the Chilean Andes at an altitude of 4,000 meters (13,000 feet). “It was like being on the moon,” they explained in an interview. The vast, barren landscape and the thin mountain air left them feeling intensely alienated, and in Surire they make that sensation palpable. The long observational shots capture a desolate landscape in which human life at first seems to play only a marginal role. But the camera challenges this first impression, focusing on the wealth of flora and fauna in the foreground, while off in the distance a colorful convoy of transporter trucks takes away the salt – which, despite Salar de Surire’s protected status, is mined with the approval of the authorities. Perut and Osnovikoff document this disappearing world using their characteristic and highly articulate visual idiom, particularly recognizable for its grand wide shots and the pin-sharp extreme close-ups. The last original inhabitants of the region look on in resignation from a distance at the exploitation of their habitat. Meanwhile, they tend to their llamas, subject the dog to a risky-looking trim and prepare for a trip into town. Continue reading

William A. Kirkley – Orange Sunshine (2016)

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Orange Sunshine is the never-before-told story of the Brotherhood of Eternal Love – a spiritual group of surfers and hippies in California, which became the largest suppliers of LSD during the 60’s and 70’s. This feature-length doc follows their rise to star-status in Psychedelic movement and the “bad trip” that followed. Continue reading

Allan King – Memory for Max, Claire, Ida and Company (2005)

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Quote:
Finally, King expands his exploration of the aging process with Memory for Max, Claire, Ida, and Company, an intimate personal diary for eight patients suffering from dementia and memory loss at the Baycrest Geriatric Health Care System. Whereas Dying at Grace documented patients succumbing to the inevitable, Memory focuses on the terrifying doubts, palpable relationships, and relentless patterns of the individual patient and their fragile grip on reality. The titular trio makes up a close-knit group linked by emotional necessity, and Memory delves deep into the haunting alienation each feels when one unexpectedly dies, and the others have to relive the tragic news over and over again. The process is difficult to watch, but in a final coup de grace, King upends stereotypes about the sick and aged by never abandoning them no matter how difficult the situation, his camera a tracker of the small, delicate emotions cinema usually can’t recreate. Continue reading

Albert Serra – El Senyor ha fet en mi meravelles AKA The Lord Worked Wonders in Me (2011)

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The original dvdr announce wrote:
This filmic exchange is based on two works that reflect on the way each director films, on the crew and the actors, on the way they see and make cinema. Albert Serra took the characters of Honor de Cavalleria and his regular team of collaborators to follow in the steps of Quixote. Lisandro Alonso returned to La Pampa province to film his work, for which he recalls Misael Saavedra, the lead of his first film, La Libertad. Continue reading

Allan King – Come on Children (1973)

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Quote:
For Come on Children, from 1972, King returns to the lives of troubled Toronto youths, but this time he creates the environment of study himself. After doing extensive interviews with local teenagers, King sent 10 of his subjects on a country retreat to a farmhouse where they could live collectively without the interference of adults, hierarchies, or rules. Each of the teens, ranging in age from 13 to 18, gets a musical introduction from one of the more charismatic subjects, a pimply ex-drug addict named John. His Dylan-esque folk narration gives Come on Children a reflexive identity, the best example his last lyric, “I’m not sure what the film’s about, but I hope the movie makes you feel that you wished you were here.” These kids understand the camera’s perspective, but that doesn’t stop them from unveiling a disturbing mixture of naiveté and hardnosed cynicism at the adult life waiting around the corner. Once again, King uses a collective set piece—a visit from everyone’s parents to the farmhouse—to show the dynamic drama breathing through the core of every conversation. If Come on Children is less successful at engaging the viewer’s sympathies, it’s because the Vietnam-era teens don’t see much to look forward to, an ideology King never sugarcoats. Continue reading