Author Archives: admin

Konstantin Lopushanskiy – Russkaya simfoniya aka Russian Symphony (1994)

The protagonist finds out that some children were left behind in a sinking school, and is slowly driven mad as he tries to save them. A parable on the theme of the Last Judgment, numerous catastrophic events reveal a certain ambiguity in their origins, accompanied by the terrible suspicion that the things going on are some kind of a performance or theatrical production. Read More »

Heiny Srour – Saat el Fahrir Dakkat, Barra ya Isti Mar AKA The Hour of Liberation Has Arrived (1974)

In the late 60s, Dhofar rose up against the British-backed Sultanate of Oman, in a democratic, feminist guerrilla movement. Heiny Srour and her team crossed 500 miles of desert and mountains by foot, under bombardment by the British Royal Air Force, to reach the conflict zone and capture this rare record of a now mostly-forgotten war. The People’s Liberation Army — barefoot, without rank or salary — freed a third of the territory, while undertaking a vast program of social reforms and infrastructure projects — schools, farms, hospitals, and roads were built, while illiterate teenage shepherdesses became more forceful feminists than Simone de Beauvoir or Germaine Greer, and 8-year-old school children learned to practice democracy with more maturity than so many adults. A still-topical portrait of a liberated society and an exploration of the role of oil in U.S. and British involvement in the Middle East, The Hour of Liberation Has Arrived was the first film by an Arab woman to screen at Cannes, where it was nominated for four awards. (Film Forum) Read More »

Apichatpong Weerasethakul – The Anthem (2006)

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The Anthem is a celebration of filmmaking and the viewing experience. In Thailand, before every cinema film screening, there will be a Royal Anthem before the feature presentation. The purpose is to honour the King. It is one of the rituals imbedded in Thai society to give a blessing to something or someone before certain ceremonies. The Anthem presents a ‘Cinema Anthem’ that praises and blesses the approaching feature for each screening. This audio-visual purification process is performed by three old ladies. They also channel energy to the audience in order to give them a clear mind. Read More »

Sarah Maldoror – Aimé Césaire – un homme une terre (1976)

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Documentary on the négritude movement through one of its founders, Aimé Césaire. Read More »

Sarah Maldoror – Et les chiens se taisaient (1974)

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Recordings of extracts from the Aimé Césaire play : in a long, pain-racked poem declaimed before his mother, the rebel cries his revolt against the enslavement of his people. Read More »

Yûzô Kawashima – Noren AKA The Shop Curtain (1958)

Yuzo Kawashima’s adaptation of Toyoko Yamasaki’s first novel. Read More »

Eddy Terstall – Vox Populi (2008)

“This highly acclaimed Dutch film is about politics. A dangerous subject, because it is too easy to (seemingly) take sides. “Vox Populi” (“the voice of the people”) is a sharp view on the Dutch politics of today. A populist rightwing makes a high flight in the polls and we follow a “red/green” politician whose party makes a drop. When he comes in contact with a real Amsterdam family who says exactly what they think, the politician starts to copy harsch statements about Muslims, pocket-filling politicians, etc. much to the dislike of his fellow party members, but all the fuss does raise the party in the polls. “Vox Populi” is a real Dutch film with nudity, sex and strong language, but also with a nice magnifying glass on politics, society and the gap between these two. Read More »