Short Film

Paul Vecchiali – Les roses de la vie (1962)

Short film by Paul Vecchiali; starring Germaine de France.

The chauffeur is played by the legendary director Jean Eustache. Read More »

Danièle Huillet & Jean-Marie Straub – Lothringen! (1994)

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In this 20-minute film, Jean Marie-Straub, who was born in Metz, Lorraine, unfolds the changing history of his homeland, a country torn by different wars and states. Victories are defeats and vice versa, and the land is saturated with iron, coal and blood. “Lothringen!” (“Lorraine”) is Straub’s personal account of “How Green was my Valley”, a lesson in topographical land survey and history. Read More »

Darezhan Omirbayev – Shilde AKA July (1988)

Review: Darezhan Omirbaev’s penchant for spare, elliptical narrative, muted figures, and disembodied framing (most notably, of hands and feet) have often been (favorably) compared to the rigorous aesthetic of Robert Bresson. However, in imposing such a somber – and inescapably cerebral – analogy, there is also a propensity to overlook the wry, self-effacing humor and irony of situation that pervade his films: a lyricism that equally captures the human comedy in all its contradictions and nobility from the margins of Soviet society. This sense of the quotidian as a continuum of human experience, elegantly rendered in Omirbaev’s recent film, The Road through Amir’s recurring daydream of a mother milking a cow and her intrusive child (who, in turn, looks remarkably like Amir’s own son) in rural Kazakhstan (an image that subsequently proves to be a catalytic historical memory from his childhood when man landed on the moon), can also be seen from the outset of Omirbaev’s cinema through his incorporation of a decidedly Buñuelian sequence in the short film, July of a young boy who, while on the lookout for guards near the foothills of a kolkhoz commissary, curiously finds himself wandering into a recital hall where the performance of a young pianist is punctuated by the appearance of a horseman on the stage. Read More »

João Rui Guerra da Mata & João Pedro Rodrigues – IEC Long (2014)

The latest short film from João Pedro Rodrigues and João Rui Guerra da Mata is a dreamy, experimental look at a deactivated fireworks factory in Macao.

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Macao, Taipa Island, 2014.
The word “panchão” was first heard in Macao. From the Chinese “pan-tcheong” or “pau-tcheong”, dictionaries define it as a Macanese regionalism also known as “China cracker” or “Chinese rocket”.
Who inhabits the ancient Iec Long Firecracker Factory? Read More »

João Pedro Rodrigues – O Pastor (1988)

João Pedro Rodrigues’ ESTC graduation short film.
Formally assured, and consisting mostly of long shots, it tells the story of a shepherd who, at the age of 65, is forced to retire. It is unsurprising to learn that António Reis was one of Rodrigues’ teachers at ESTC, considering how much it reminded me of Reis’ own semi-ethnographic portrayals of quotidian rural life in Trás-os-Montes and Ana. Still, it is a mere curiosity. Read More »

João Pedro Rodrigues – O Corpo de Afonso AKA The King’s Body (2012)

How would it look like, the body of Dom Afonso Henriques, first king of Portugal, tutelary figure, subject to successive mythifications throughout Portuguese history? Read More »

Ferenc Cakó – Stones AKA Kövek – Stones (2000)

An Artist violently grinds stones and uses the sand to create animated drawings. His first picture is the Garden of Eden. Once Eve becomes pregnant, all the tribulations of the real world are unleashed upon her. She follows through dream-like sequences populated with crying birds, brick-wall-faced bureaucrats and pensive philosophers in seemingly petrified poses. Irritated, repressed and allured by each other, the creatures on the screen start living a life of their own. Gradually, a dark climax builds up. Will the Artist himself be able to handle so much emotional intensity? Written by helge79 Read More »