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INDIE CINEMA THE MAGAZINE OF INDEPENDENT CINEMA

POWER OF THE INCOMPREHENSIBLE New film based on the classic Alexander Grin novel by Diana Ringo

THE MUSIC CRITIC

Hollywood veteran John Malkovich stars in the biting musical satire conceived by star violinist Aleksey Igudesman

RADDA NOVIKOVA

High profile Russian film director gives us an in-depth look at her new projects

JOHN YIU

Interview with actor, director and producer of Million Loves in Me and The Unknown Mother


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LETTER FROM THE EDITOR Dear Rea d e rs , O ur f ir s t e d i t i o n o f t h e p ri n t e d I n d i e C i n e m a M a g a z i ne, is p ub lish e d d u ri n g t h e Eu ro p e a n L o c k d o w n . T h e s e m e a s u res under ta k e n by o u r g o v e rn m e n t s c a u s e d t re m e n d o u s d a m a g e to all a s p e c t s o f h u m a n l i fe . Al l c u l t u ra l e v e n t s w e re ca nceled, i n c l u d i n g t h e m o s t i m p o rt a n t o n e s . T h e fe s t i v a l w h ich I or gan i z e i s a l s o p o s t p o n e d d u e t o t h e l o c k d o w n . I t is regretta bl e fo r u s . Fo r 5 ye a rs w e h a v e be e n p ro m o t i n g in d ep enden t c i n e m a s c re e n i n g i n d e p e n d e n t fi l m s . We h a d in t eresting fi l m s fro m a l l o v e r t h e w o rl d , i n d e p e n d e n t fi l m m a ker s cam e t o Vi e n n a a n d i t e n ri c h e d t h e c u l t u re o f Au s t r ia and ind e p e n d e n t c i n e m a t o g ra p h y i n g e n e ra l . D u e t o c l os ed b or der s a n d t ra v e l re s t ri c t i o n s i t i s a v e ry d i ffi c u l t s i t u a t ion f or us a n d p a rt i c i p a n t s o f o u r fe s t i v a l . I n d e p e n d e n t cin em a nowada y s i s m o re i m p o rt a n t t h a n e v e r be fo re , s i n c e w e s ee how cen s o rs h i p a n d p ro p a g a n d a l i t t l e by l i t t l e t a k e s ov er our lif e . I n d e p e n d e n t p o i n t o f v i e w i n c i n e m a c a n be cr u cia l f or sto p p i n g g l o ba l d i c t a t o rs h i p . We c a n n o t o v e re e s t i ma t e the dam a g e s w h i c h h a v e be e n d o n e by t h e u n c o n s t i t u t ion a l measure m e n t s o f t h e g o v e rn m e n t . C re a t i v i t y a n d i n d e pendent p o i n t o f v i e w c a n re v e a l t h e i r e v i l p l a n s - a l l t h ey w a n t is to ha v e o be d i e n t a n d z o m bi e fi e d p e o p l e w h o a re ea s y t o manip u l a t e . We a re n o w o n t h e e d g e o f t h e 3 rd Wo rl d Wa r and I w a n t t o e n c o u ra g e a l l fi l m m a k e rs t o m a k e i n d e pen d en t f ilms, a n d t o k e e p t h e i r c re a t i v e s p i ri t u p , d u ri n g h a r d t im es . Free sp i ri t a n d i n d e d p e n d e n t t h i n k i n g a re s t ro n g e r t h a n t h e cor r up t m e d i a a n d h o l d i n c re d i bl e p o w e r, a n d i s t h e m os t imp or ta n t w e a p o n a g a i n s t g re e d a n d o p p re s s i o n . Elena Ri n g o Editor I n - C h i e f o f I n d i e C i n e m a M a g a z i n e

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EDITOR: Elena Ringo PICTURE EDITOR: Dia na Ringo

CONTENTS 5

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Editor Elena Ringo introduces the first printed edition of Indie Cinema Magazine

Documentary “LIGO” tells the inside story of the Cosmic Detection National Geographic Named the Top Discovery of the Decade.

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A fact-based film by Toma Enache, about the brainwashing and torture-based experiment during the Communist party rule in the Pitesti Prison Romania.

Feature film debut by Yuzhu Xiang about human relationships and connections

LETTER FROM THE EDITOR

BETWEEN PAIN AND AMEN

LIGO

BALCONY IN THE MOONLIGHT

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A MOTHER’S WILL The film by Fortes Lopez follows Mel, a young single mother, who struggles through poverty. She is determined to change her and her son’s life for the better.

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PATHS OF LIFE The four protagonists in Thomas Lüchinger’s new documentary “Paths of Life” undergo radical changes in their lives.

C O VER PHOTO: ERIK S A B R I I N POW ER OF THE I N COMPR EHEN SIB LE

INDIE CINEMA MAGAZINE Volume 1 August 2020.

11,565 KILOMETRES PROJECT Beichen Zhang’s documentary is about the transportation of an antique coffin from the China to the US.

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STEUBEN COUNTY Sean Mannion’s film tells about a young man who moves to rural Indiana to live with his grandmother and grows suspicious his cousin’s teacher who helps out around the trailer park where they reside.


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Producer and actor John Yiu tells about his projects, Million Loves in Me” and his new short film “The Unknown Mother”.

Elena Ringo writes in her in-depth essay about alienation - in society, in film, and in life.

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Upper Story by Alessandra Pedrotti Catoni is a feature documentary about the long-term partnership and the scientific collaboration established between Western and Tibetan scientists 35 years ago.

Versatile multimedia artist Eva Petric discusses her work which combines dance and visual projections.

John Malkovich plays a bitter critic in the musical satire written and conceived by virtuoso violinist Aleksey Igudesman.

INTERVIEW WITH JOHN YIU

EVA PETRIC

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POWER OF THE INCOMPREHENSIBLE Adaptation of the psychological novel Alexander Grin about a violin player and a hypnotist, directed by Diana Ringo

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INTERVIEW WITH RADDA NOVIKOVA High profile Russian film and TV director gives us an in depth interview about her new projects, including Moskovskaya Gorka with Fedor Bondarchuk.

ART AND ALIENATION

THE MUSIC CRITIC

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LIKE NO OTHER

Documentary short about the 2010 Pakistan floods and their aftermath, produced by Claudia Adams and directed by Aziz Ahmed

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BALLAD OF A RIGHTEOUS MERCHANT Herbert Golder in his documentary chronicles Werner Herzog as he shoots his feature film, MY SON, MY SON, WHAT HAVE YE DONE (co-written by Golder),

UPPER STORY

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ARMENIA(S) TIME FOR ARTISTS The film by Anahit Dasseux Ter Mesropian & David Vital-Durand documents Armenian artists whose lives are a window into the transmission of Armenian culture through art.


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BETWEEN PAIN AND AMEN Enache chooses to concentrate on the religious convictions w h i c h h e l p e d t h e p ro t a g o n i s t t o o v e rc o m e t h e p h y s ica l a n d m e n t a l t o rt u re . On an important historical note, so far it has been the first and o n l y fi l m m a d e o n t h i s im portant topic, which has been a taboo subject in Romania for many years. “Between Pain and Amen” is an independently produced production, m a d e c o m p l e t e l y w i t h o u t g ove rn m e n t s u p p o rt . T h e d irect or and the screenwriter consulted w i t h t h e s u rv i v o rs d u r in g t h e m a k i n g o f t h e fi l m .

DIRECTED BY TOMA ENACHE A passionate ode to the strength of the human spirit. D i r e c t o r To m a E n a c h e h a s u s e d h i s s e c o n d f e a t u r e f i l m “ B e t we e n Pai n and Amen” to tackle a s t o ry l i t t l e k n o w n t o m any We ste rne rs : ab out the b r ainwashi n g a n d t o rt u re - ba s e d experiment during the Communist party rule in the Pitesti P r i s on Ro m ani a. Nob el Laureate and gula g s u rv i v o r Al e x a n d e r S olz he ni tsyn c alled it “the most ter r ib le a c t o f ba rba ri s m i n t h e co nte m po rar y wor ld. This gripping, fact-based drama portrays a young, talented composer, Tase Caraman, returning to Romania being arrested by the Communist regime and taken to a prison where torture l e d b y t h e f e a re d c o m m a n d e r C i u m a u . T h e b a r b a r i c e x p e r i m e n t i s c o nduc t ed on the inmates in an a t t e m p t t o “re - e d uc a t e ” the m - to f orce them to lose all t h e i r p re v i o u s p o l i t ical and religious convictions. Caraman’s strong will, faith and lo v e fo r hi s fi ancée Lia help s him sur viv e .

The story is undeniably intrigui n g , a s i t m e r g e s t h e h o r ro r s of the Romanian communist re g i m e w i t h a g ri p p i n g n a r r a tive about the incessant will to s u r v i v e . I t ’s s u s p e n s e f u l a n d resonant, with an epic feel undeterred by its claustropho bi c s e t t i n g . Enache handles the material well, and successfully avoids m a k i n g t h e f i l m ’s i m p a c t f u l moments overwrought. The film does not depict graphically all the real life horrors which occurred, and has a p o e t i c , l y ri c a l t o n e i n cer t a in scenes. Romantic visuals of blooming fields accompanied by the protagonist playing be a u t i fu l m u s i c o n h i s d ou b l e bass, contrast with the gloomy


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prison interiors. Lead actors A n a Pâ r v u ( L i a ) a n d Va l i V. Popescu (Tase), as well as Kira Hagi (Tana), have their feature f i l m de but. While the entire film is about a dark chapter in human history, i t e n ds up be i ng up lif ting, as t h e fi lm i s a te stament to the s t re n g t h o f t h e h u m a n s p i r i t . One can only hope that the f i l m he lps to sh ed more light o n t he subj e c t of the P itești P r i s on e xpe ri m e nt, not only in Rom ani a, but g lob ally. From Pitesti prison, the experiment extended to other Rom ani an pri so ns. The p eop le responsible for these atrocities were never punished. Most f or me r pri so ns h ave b een lef t in ruins or demolished and

the deaths have never been investiga t e d . T h e f i l m B E T W E E N PA I N A N D A MEN is t h e o n l y fe a t u re fi l m on this t o p i c . I t i s a n e n t i re l y independent production. The film premiered in Bucharest, on O cto be r 1 s t , 2 0 1 9 a n d w a s comp let e l y s o l d o u t . A B OUT THE D I REC TOR To m a E n a c h e w a s b o r n o n Novembe r 1 , 1 9 7 0 i n t h e B l a c k Sea city of Constanta, Romania. After five years of university studies he earned his bache l o r ’s d e g r e e a t t h e T h e a t r e and Film Academy in Bucharest ( 1 9 9 8 ) a n d t h e n h i s m a s t e r ’s i n a c t o r ’s a r t a t t h e s a m e

u n i v e rs i t y. He h a s s t a ged s u c cessful plays performed hundreds of times in Romania and a bro a d . He m a d e h i s d e bu t i n cin em a w i t h t h e fi l m , I ’M N OT FA MO U S BUT I’M AROMANIAN (2013), the first feature film in history spoken in the Aromanian/Vlach language. He then directed t h e d o c u m e n t a ry T HE A R MA NS / V L A C H S , F R O M T H E FA M O U S M A N A K I A TO I ’ M N OT FA M O U S , about the Manakia Brothers, of Aromanian/Vlach origin, the pioneers of the Balkan cinema, who shot the first scenes in the Balkans in 1905.

DRAMA 125 MIN.

”BETWEEN PAIN AND AMEN depicts a heart-breaking story that took place in a Romanian prison communist regime”

Film director Toma Enache, M r. Ar pad Szilaghyi, sur vivor of the Pitesti Experiment (in the middle) and actor Csaba Ciugulitu, at one of the film screenings

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15-18 October POSTPON E D DUE TO GOV ER N M E N T M EA SURES


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A MOTHER’S WILL WRITTEN AND DIRECTED BY FORTES LOPEZ Fortes Lopez is a FilipinoAmerican writer born from i m m i g rant pare n ts. A s a child g ro wi ng up i n the Philip p ines, he h e ard o f the har dship s his e l d e r s e n d u r e d d u r i n g Wo r l d War II. His grandfather surv i v e d the Blo o dy Death March o f B a t a a n . H i s g r a n d m o t h e r ’s brother was gunned down by

Fortes began writing A Mother’s Will b as e d o n h i s e x p e ri e n c e s growing up with his grandmother, and her struggle living in p overt y. T h e s t o ry fo l l o w s the character Mel, a young s i n g l e m o t h e r. E m b a r r a s s e d o f b e i n g p o o r, s h e h i d e s h e r shame b y e a t i n g h e r l u n c h i n the ladies’ room. She works as an intern on a military base hoping her skills as a typist will bring her to America. With great determination to make up for a modest education, it is her will to change her surroundings for something b etter. I f n o t fo r h e r, t h e n fo r her son ’s s a k e .

the Imperial Japanese Army for sneaking bread to US POWs. His mother sold cooked food to the US military on their way to Clark Air Base. She aspired to cross over herself so m e day to the l and of op p ort u n i t y. T h e i r t a l e s o f t o r t u r e and conflict opened his eyes to t h e harsh re ali ty that nothing last s fo re v e r. D riven to docu m e n t the i r affli ction, he aims t o s h are hi s family’s p ast with future generations with the expectation of keeping their m e mo ri e s ali v e .

Set in the 1970s in Angeles City, it features dialogue in English, Ta g a l o g a n d K a p a m p a n g a n . I t also has some history about t h e P h i l i p p i n e s , f ro m w h e n c e the Spanish arrived, to the Muslims i n t h e s o u t h , a n d t h e dictator, Fernando Marcos. The characters were inspired by real p eop l e a n d re a l - l i fe s i t u ations. In addition to the book, Fo r t e s m a n a g e d t o p r o d u c e a short film based on the last three chapters. Over the course of three y e a rs , h e h a s fi l m e d inside o f a p ri s o n i n J e ffe rs o n

SHORT FILM

C i t y, M i s s o u ri . T h e m a in ch a ra c t e r, M e l , h a s c o m e t o a crossroads. She must decide i f s a v i n g a m a n ’s l i fe i s w or t h compromising her faith in god. Is love truly worth saving even if it goes against everything y o u be l i e v e i n ? The book is available on amazon via download and paperback. I t ’s s t o r i e s l i k e h i s m o t h e r ’s t h a t i n s p i r e d Fo r t e s t o d o c u ment her life and others so he can share to the world t h a t a n y t h i n g i s p o s s i b l e. H ow o n e p e rs o n ’s l i fe c a n crea t e a chain reaction that benefits the greater good. With selfbe l i e f a n d a l i t t l e bi t of d iv in e intervention, even a street girl from the Philippines can find her way to America. His website features interviews from relatives talking about their hardships and can be fo u n d a t w w w.fo rt e s l o p ez. com T h e fi l m i s s e t t o p re m iere in L o s An g e l e s , Au g u s t 2 020 a n d t h e fi l m ’s w e bs i t e i s a t w w w. e 4 l fi l m s .c o m .

Wtiter and director Fortes Lopez


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FEATURE FILM DIRECTED BY RAY SPIVEY & JEFF KERR writersblock2019.com

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m e t h o d o f ‘ p a i n t i n g f ro m t h e source’ she had invented. To d a y s h e e n c o u r a g e s p e o p l e to go on their own ‘hero quest’ and to develop confidence in t h e i r c re a t i v i t y a ft e r in t er a cting with the unknown.

PATHS OF LIFE

An d fi n a l l y, t h e re i s a G er m a n p h i l o s o p h e r, a rt i s t a n d t h er a pist who help young patients in drug rehabilitation to realise h o w c ri t i c a l s i t u a t i o n s ca n b e overcome and ways can be fo u n d o u t o f a p p a re n t f a il u re in order to regain awareness re g a rd i n g t h e m s e l v e s a n d t h e w o rl d . D I RE C TORS S TAT E M E N T

DIRECTED BY THOMAS LÜCHINGER The four protagonists in T h o m a s L ü c h i n g e r ’s n e w documentary PATHS OF LIFE go through radical changes in their li v es . A ft er bei ng torn o u t o f t h ei r f am i li ar surro u n din gs d ue t o pers o n a l t ra g e d i e s t h e y a r e forced to explore unknown territories and realize that crises c an b e t h e cat aly s t for important transformation o f t heir ow n s elf . T h ere i s an Austrian who af ter being forced to leave his village in the Salzkammergut as a young man, lost not only his f a mi ly but also his homeland. To d a y h e u s e s h i s k n o w l e d g e o f n a tural e c o system p atter ns as a pe rm ac ulture teacher ; to p ro m o t e t h e re s p e c t f u l t re a t m e n t o f nature in sustainab le

agr icultu re a n d t o t ra n s fo rm a neglecte d fa rm i n S w i t z e rl a n d into a fl o u ri s h i n g p a ra d i s e . T h e re i s a n I c e l a n d i c w o m a n , mother of two young sons, who worked as an internationally successful model in London and Milan, w h o s e m o d e l i n g c a re e r came to an abrupt end due to a tragic event in her family. After b eing f orc e d t o fa c e h e r p a ra lyzing tra u m a , s h e n o w g u i d e s people away from restrictive self -ima g e s a n d h e l p s t h e m t o achieve p e rs o n a l g ro w t h . 80 year old ‘Art-Medicinewoman’ from Arizona was once abandoned by her husband with their three small children. She later discovered that she could find the so-called ‘gold in h e r w o u n d ’ u s i n g t h e

Contrary to many warning a n d fri g h t e n i n g i m a g e s w h ich t o d a y re m i n d u s o f c ris es a n d g l o b a l d e s t r u c t i o n , PAT H S O F L I F E s h o w s t h e w a ys l ea d in g t o t h e i m m e a s u ra bl e p os s ib ili t i e s o f t h e i n d i v i d u a l , if t h ey look not into the overwhelming h o p e l e s s n e s s , bu t t o a f u t u re worth living. The stories of the protagonists show realities marked by the courage t o c h a n g e by a c c e p t i n g cr is es a n d s e a rc h i n g fo r w a y s ou t of t h e m . To d a y t h e y s h a r e w i t h others what they have found o n t h e i r w a y a n d i n v i te u s t o s e e p e rs o n a l c ri s e s a n d cr is es of the world as an occasion for d e v e l o p m e n t a n d c h a n g e. My preoccupation with PATHS OF LIFE was triggered by the quest i o n w h e t h e r w e n e ed cr is es i n o rd e r t o e x p l o re n e w pa t h s a n d n e w p e rs p e c t i v e s t h a t a re


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important for our own develo pm e nt and that of society? I c a me to thi s question b y real i z i ng that all the p rotagonists portrayed in my last film BEING THERE had decided to change t h ei r li v e s as a result of a lif e crisis and to commit themselves to people in the last phase o f the i r lives. During the preparation of PAT H S O F L I F E a n d t h e s e a rc h f or t h e pro tag o nists, the wellknown myth researcher Joseph Campbell ‘accompanied’ me. In his epochal work ‘The H e ro w i t h a T h o u s a n d Fa c e s ’ , C a m p b e l l d e s c r i b e s h o w i n d iv i d ual ‘ he ro que sts’ have contributed time to developing

and shaping inspirations for a better togetherness. I have t h ere fo re de c i ded to use f our v e r y di ffe re nt peop le to show how new insights regarding one’s own and society’s development can be found and be universally valid. What abilities can people acquire if they face c r i si s, what the y lead them to a journey into the unknown? Do they succeed in freeing t h em se lve s fro m stressf ul sit uations, patterns of thought and action, in finding themse l v es fi rst i n an increasingly c om ple x wo rld a nd in making an i mpac t o n society?

A B OUT THE D I REC TOR Thomas L üc h i n g e r w a s bo rn i n 1 9 5 3 in Rh e i n t a l o f S t . Ga l l e n . P r ior to h i s fi l m m a k i n g c a re e r, Lüchinger received an education as an artist and was a c t i v e a s a p a i n t e r. F o r h i s 1 9 9 6 f ea t u re l e n g t h d i re c t o ri a l debut STEPS OF MINDFULNESS – A JOURNEY WITH THICH NHAT HANH he accompanied Vietnamese Zen master Thich Nhat Hanh with his camera through India. His film AGNES MARTIN – ON A C L E A R D AY ( 2 0 0 0 ) w a s p r e sented in the international

competition of the Toronto Film Fe s t i v a l a n d w a s s c r e e n e d a t the Tate Modern London in line with the 2015 Agnes Martin re t ro s p e c t i v e .

DOCUMENTARY - 84 MIN.

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LIGO DIRECTED BY LES GUTHMAN T H E INSIDE STO RY O F T H E C O S MI C D ET ECTION NAT I O N A L GE O GRA P H I C NAME D THE TO P DI S C O V E RY O F T H E D ECADE .

Ve t e ran do c um entar y director and p rod u c e r L es Guthm an and his crew were on loca t i o n i n 2 015 at the LIGO O b ser vator y in Louis i a n a , U S A , the day the decade’s most imp or ta n t d i sc ove ry was made — the detection of g ra vi t a t i o nal wav e s f rom the collision of tw o m assi v e blac k holes over a b illion year s a g o .

“In a few hundred years, when our descendants look back on this era, and they ask themselves what were the great things that came to us f r om this era, I believe they w ill be a f undamental unders tanding of the laws t h at control the universe, and an unders tanding of what thos e law s do i n t h e universe, an exploration of the universe. LIGO is a big part of that.” — Kip Thorne, LIGO Nobel L aur e at e and creator of the film “INTERSTELL AR”

A f t er a 40-ye ar s earch, the discover y op e n e d up t he 95% o f th e univer se that has b ee n d ar k to us unti l now — the violent, “wa rp e d si d e ” o f the uni ver se — and a new er a i n ast rono m y was bor n.

DOCUMENTARY - 84 MIN


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THE BALCONY IN THE MOONLIGHT DIRECTED BY YUZHU XIANG Feature film debut by Yu z h u X i a n g S YN OPSI S A m an and a wo man have a conver sation o n a b a l co ny at m i dnight af ter a dinner p ar ty. T h e m an te lls he r four stor ies he wrote recen t l y. T h e f i r st sto ry i s about a mentally distur b ed m a n who sne ak s i nto a str ange woman’s ap a rt m e n t af t e r k i lli ng hi s f ather. The second one i s a bo u t a s t re sse d o ut and angr y man who wants t o k i l l hi s w i fe . T he thir d one is ab out a man w h o t a k e s c h a r g e at ho m e af ter commiting mur der. T h e l a s t st or y i s abo ut a p ainter and a f emale em p l o y e e o f a pro pe rty m a nagement comp any wh o i s s e t t o c olle c t unpai d rent f rom him. B y telling h e r t h e s e st or ie s so m e thi ng new comes into ex ist e n c e b et w e e n the m , dr iving them closer toge t h e r.

“I have always been curious about human mind. I want to discover the inner connections among human activities. My job is to reveal common people’s infinite inner world.” — Yuzhu Xiang FEATURE FILM - 74 MIN

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DIRECTED BY BEICHEN ZHANG 11,565 Kilometres Project Experimental filmmaker-phot o g r a p h e r B e i c h e n Z h a n g ’s film is a strange, bleak, p o e t i c d o c u m e n t a r y, a b o u t the lengthy odyssey of an antique coffin from the S h a n do ng pro vi n ce (China) to the University of Pennsylvania Museum of Archaeology and Anthropology (USA). At first glance the desolate images of seascapes, construction sites, various vehicles,don’t seem to be t r uly c o nne c te d, however, the film tells a very specific story, and i s a pro fo un d ex p lor ation of life, death and inevitable f u t ure . A coffin traveling to a different c ountry i s a symb ol of tr ansformation of our mind and environment. The director tries

to r aise i m p o rt a n t p h i l o s o p h ical questions, for example, whether o bj e c t s a re a bl e t o t o remain t h e s a m e , a ft e r c ro s sing grea t d i s t a n c e s o v e r t i m e . It is b as e d o n a c t u a l s c i e n t i fi c research, with many archeological references. The link between the past and the present is another topic of the f ilm. I t i s e d u c a t i o n a l a n d i n v e s t i g a t e s m a n y i n t e re s t i n g facts. Cinematography is minimalistic and images are understated, reflecting the gloomy atmosphere of the event. The intertiles provide valuable background information. It is a 30-minute cine-essay from the American experimental filmmaker-photographer Beichen Zhang; a distinctively abstract work,

about the circulation of artifa c t s , t h e c o m p l e x i t y of col onial histories, and the materi a l re a l i t y o f h i s t o ri c a l d ocuments. But with no words or n a rra t i v e , t h i s h y p n o tic es s a y featuring bleak landscapes is all but unclassifiable. The arrival of 11,565 Kilometres Project comes with a sense of relief. Though experiment a l f i l m m a y f e e l l i k e a p e rs o n a l a n d i n t i m a t e fo r m on ce acquainted with, the discovery for most of us comes by way of u n e x p e c t e d re v e l a t i o n . The genre-crossing visual poem is divided into 10 chapters, t h e s o u n d t ra c k d o e s n ot h a v e any music, and only consists of various ambient sounds – rushing trains, whirling winds. 11,565 Kilometres Project is an unusual film which explores the unknown, and is commendable for its originality of the topic and innovative structure.


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INDIE CINEMA Magazine | 2020 | Issue 1

STEUBEN COUNTY DIRECTED BY SEAN MANNION S YN OPSI S A f t er suffe ri ng a mental b reakdown, Ed d y m o v e s i nto hi s gr andmother ’s tr ailer wit h h i s c ousi n, Bri dg e t. H e sp ends his time idli n g ab out the i r sm all Indiana town with B r id g e t and he r fri e nd, Car ly, b ut unwinds when he suspe c ts hi s cousin’s teacher of p lanni ng a m urde r. In a p ar anoia-f ueled atte m p t t o p ro te c t Carly, Eddy gets str anded ou t o n a l a ke and i s fo rced to conf ront b oth th e t eac he r and hi s own demons. D i rec to r State m ent T h e fi lm s that move me the most ex p res s a n i nt i mate fe e li ng or an idea that couldn’t o t he r wi se be arti c u lated in another medium . T h e i de as and feelings that are, to me, m o s t wo r thy o f i nve stigation are the ones th a t e x plo re parts o f our selves that are har d t o t a l k abo ut and, as such, are sometimes t h e o ne s that we li ke the least. With Steub e n C ounty, I was i n terested in the gener al i d e a o f le tti ng thi ng s b e and what ugly cons eque n c e s ari se when we, esp ecially as m e n , i m po se o urse lv es in situations where it i s n ’t ne ce ssary.

In t h e f i l m , o u r mai n c harac te r, Eddy, inha b i t s t h i s so rt o f s i t uati o n w he n sees w hat h e p e rc e i ve s t o be t hre ats t o the w om e n i n h i s l i f e and c o nti nual l y goes t o de st r u c t i ve l e ngths t o de al w i th them him se l f . S u c h b e havi o r e ve ntual l y e n ds his e n g a g e m e n t and puts ano t he r young w om a n i n a c t u al phys i c al dange r. Ne a r t h e e n d of the f i l m, Eddy i s o n the phon e wi t h h i s e x and s he te l l s hi m, “ev e r yt h i n g doe s n’t have to be bad or ine vi t a b l e .” At t hi s po i nt, he has al lowed

his par anoia to g et the best of him a n d he imposed himself as a sor t of sa v i o r ; this time directed at his cousin’s fr i en d , Car ly. He has, ag ain, succumbed to th e ov er whelming ly male inclination to a c t a s the “ protector ” ev en when unsolic i ted . It’s clear that this is a mistake an d i t’s clear that, in a way, histor y is rep ea ting itself. E ddy ’s par anoia is reflec ted throug h the my tholog y of the town a n d those who inhabit it. He quickly p ro j ec ts a similar fear that ended his relati o nship onto Car ly and Mr. Dodg e. W h i l e i t’s entirely possible that Car ly could h a v e ev entually been in dang er, it is not u p to E ddy to place himself in the cente r o f i t all. But I think it also speaks to the oth er side of the issue, which sor t of r an d o mness of existence--that these awfu l th i n gs that happen are not bad or inev ita b l e, they kind of just are, they could h a p p en to any one, and it’s not necessar ily th ei r fault. There’s a way to read it in w h i c h we sublimate all that projection/drea d a s an act of empathy ; E ddy sees hims el f a s Mr. Dodg e because he is tr y ing to u n d erstand him, and himself. My hope is that, without being did a c ti c , that is where we’re able to g et, wh ere w e recog nize the ug ly thing s about ou r s el v es and we be war y of the consequenc es o f some of our dar ker inclinations.

FEATURE FILM - 78 MIN


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DOCUMENTARY FILM - 62 MIN DIRECTED BY OSCAR A. ROSAS

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INTERVIEW WITH JOHN YIU

John Yiu - Unique and t a l e n t e d f i l m m a k e r, a c t o r, p r o d u c e r W ha t wa s t h e mai n dri vi ng f o rc e f o r y ou t o b e g i n m a k i ng f i l ms s i nc e yo u al ready ha d a su c c e ssful c are e r i n ano the r field? W he n di d yo u f i rs t w ant t o mak e a film? W ha t we re yo u r f avo ri te f i l ms w hi c h ins p i re d y o u ? S inc e t h e a g e of f o ur, my mo t he r broug ht m e t o c i n e m a s t o w at c h di ff e re nt genres of fi l m s, b o t h A s i an and We s te rn; action a nd c o m e di e s etc . So me gave me great ins p i r a t i o n s a n d s t i l l have gre at i mp act on m e t o da y. That w as w he n my i nt erests in fi l m m a k i n g d e ve l o pe d and no w I enjoy t he c re a t i ve p art i n the mak i ng o f f ilms. I w o u l d l i k e t o e nt e r f i l m s c ho o l as my t e rt i a r y e du c a ti o n. H o w e ve r, my parents ins is t e d m e t o purs ue my c are e r as a le ga l p ro f e ssi o nal . As s uc h, I s tudi ed la w s a n d p u r su e d my f o rme r c are e r as a la w y e r f o r 18 ye ars . I d ec i de d t o c hange f i e l d to f i l mmaking a f t e r I m i g r ate to Canada. Al thoug h I m a n a g e d t o p as s the l aw ye rs c o nve rsion

examination in Canada, I decided n o t to pur sue the leg al career fur ther b u t to tr y filmmaking instead. We only l i v e once and I don’t want any reg rets i n m y life. W ith the suppor t of my par tn er a n d co-producer, Kenny, we produced t w o shor t films, “ My Dear Banquet” an d “ Th e Unknown Mother “ in 2 0 1 6 . After th e p roduction of the two shor t films con p l eted , we produced a feature film, “ Milli o n Lov es in Me” which is based on a tr u e stor y and my exper ience with the tw o leading char acter s in the film. Th e fi l m is prov en to be a success and has b een well receiv ed at many film festiv al s a n d wor ldwide audience. I like different g enres of films, from comedy to thr iller. There are a num b er of films that g av e me g reat inspir ati o n s such as “ Thelma & Louise” which to u c h ed upon social issues, “ The Silence o f th e Lambs” which g av e me g reat inspir a ti o n s in acting . Kenny and I are interested i n producing films that tackle social i s s u es . We like to use dar k comedy or dr am a ti c way to conv ey the messag es in ou r fi l m s to audience. W hat were the big g est challeng es y o u exper ienced as a filmmaker ? Filmmaking is not an easy task. I t’s n o t a one man per for mance, but a coll a b or ation of all cast and crew member s to make a film successful. From my ex p er ience, different crew member s su c h a s the director, fir st associate directo r, a n d the cinematog r apher mig ht hav e d i fferen t


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opin i o n s i n di ff e re nt as pe c t s duri ng the fil m i n g p ro c e ss. As pro duc e rs , K e nny and I w oul d h a ve t o l i s te n and c o ns i de r all opinions f ro m c re w me mbe rs and made a final d eci si o n o u r se l ve s . At t i me s , o pi ni ons from s ome c re w m e mbe rs mi ght no t be c onside red a n d i m p l e me nt e d. We w o ul d hav e to e xpla i n t o t h e m t hat w e al l w o rk e d for the bes t i n t e re st s o f t he f i l m and w e w ere not a bl e t o t a k e o p i ni o ns f ro m al l . C ont ro l l i n g b u d ge t i s al s o ano t he r big challe nge f ro m a p ro duc e r’s po i nt o f vi e w. I t hink st u di o s and i nde pe nde nt f i l mmake rs a l l n e e d t o c o ntro l budge t o f the making of fi l m s. We h ave to k e e p i n mi nd that the proje c t e d b o x o ff i c e has to be t hre e times t ha t o f o u r b u d ge t t o be pro f i tabl e . Ver y oft en , u n f o re se e n e x pe ns e s and c i rcums t a n c e s wi l l e s c al ate the budge t. I n that rega r d, we wi l l have t o s e e i f w e c an find a lt e r n a t i ve s t h at pre ve nt f urthe r budg et e s ca l a t i o n . I f no t , w e w i l l t he n have to d is cu ss i f w e c an s ave s o me i t e ms or scenes d is pe n se p r i o r to pro duc ti o n. H o w e v er, this m a y a l so h a ve a c hai n o f e ff e c t s o n the e nt ire p ro du c t i o n. Al l i n al l , w e do hav e to cons i de r i n t h e be s t i nte re s ts o f the product ion o f t h e f i l m.

sometimes. I remember a psy chi a tr i s t told me we came to this wor ld by o u rselv es and we will also leav e this w o r l d on our own. I think that is a reali ty a n d I honestly do feel lonely sometimes . Alienation seems to be a more se r i o u s topic depicted in my film. Aliena ti o n i s more r ampant in the society now a d a y s . Take my or ig in Hong Kong as an e x a m p l e, people are simply polar ized. Som e m i n o rity g roups such as people who li v e i n th e mar g in are being alienated. We h o p e b y using films we can celebr ate div e r s i ty and make the audience aware the gro u p s being alienated.

W ith y our fir st film Million Lov es i n M e, y ou had the difficult task of prod u cYour f i l m s de p i c t al i e nati o n, l o ne l i ness, this ing , wr iting , and play ing the lead ro l e o f Katy. It was a difficult challeng e to p l a y a is a n i m p o r t a n t to pi c i n o ur s o c i e t y, is it woman, were y ou afr aid of the tas k? Ho w a ls o p e r so n a l f o r yo u? did y ou prepare for the role? Did y o u ta ke I t hi n k l o n e l i n es s happe ns t o many people acting cour ses? W hich film actor s a re y o u r in t h e so c i e t y es pe c i al l y f o r t ho s e who liv e fav our ite? in bi g m e t ro p o li t an c i t i e s . The re i s so much s t re ss f ro m wo rk and the s urro undi ng s. For Fr ankly, I was not afr aid of the ta s k o f play ing the role of a woman. Katy i s a t hose t h a t h a ve f ami l i e s al s o f e e l l onely


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INTERVIEW WITH JOHN YIU rea l p e r so n a n d M i l l i o n Lo ve s i s a real life st o r y. I k no w t he re al K aty pe r sona lly a n d re p res e nte d he r i n a c o urt case in t h e p a st . I have s uc h gre at e mp athy t owa r ds h e r ex pe ri e nc e duri ng he r tr ial a nd t h e w e l l be i ng o f t he pe t s i nvolv ed. I pl a ye d h e r ro l e i n the f i l m w i t h my tr ue he a r t a n d t r i e d my ve ry be s t t o s how he r di ff e re n t s i de s and l aye rs t o the a udi e n c e . I di dn ’t t a k e any ac ti ng c o urs e s before fil m m a k i n g . The s ho o ti ng o f o ur f ir st s ho r t f i l m , “ My D e ar Banque t ” w as my first e x p e r i e n c e be f o re a c ame ra and the le a d a c t re ss, M s . H e l e na Law, w as a lead a ct re ss w i n n e r o f the H o ng K o ng F ilm Aw a r ds. I w as no t af rai d ac ti ng w ith her. Inst e a d, I k e p t t e l l i ng mys e l f t hat I could d o i t . As f o r M i l l i o n Lo ve s i n M e , the d ire c t o r g o t me a c o ac h, w ho w as also t he c o - sc re e n pl ay w ri te r. P ri o r t o the a ct u a l sh o o t i n g, w e go t t o ge the r f or a few da ys t o d i s c us s t he c harac t e r of Katy a nd re q u i re m ents f o r t he ro l e . H e r role

was to find the Katy inside me, r a th er than mentor me as to how to act i n ev er y scene. There are many g reat actor s in th e i n d u str y, both E ast and West. I, in pa r ti c ular like Daniel Day Lewis for his g rea t per for mance in a number of films a n d also Anthony Hopkins’ per for man c e a s Dr. Lectar in The Silence of the La m b s . For actresses, I like the per for ma n c es o f Glenn Close in Dang erous Liaison s a n d Mar ion Colltiar d in La Vie E n Rose . Both films hav e a r unning theme o f a mother and child. W hy is this sub j ec t matter so impor tant for y ou? I think mother ly lov e and lov e tow a r d s our mother are cr ucial elements th a t should exist in ev er y family. It al s o affects the g rowth and dev elopm en t o f a child sig nificantly. My mother p a s s ed away a few y ear s ag o from some s er i o u s


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il lne s s e s. I p ro duc e d the f i rs t t hre e f ilms in rem e m b r a n c e o f he r ( al tho ugh s he nev er be ha v e l i k e t h e Mami i n Mi l l i o n Lo ve s in Me ) . I n o u r f u t u re pro duc t i o ns , w e will be s urely b e m o re di ve rs i f i e d. Why di d yo u de c i de t o mak e a s ho rt f ilm a ft e r y o u r f e a t u re f i l m? A ct ua l l y I m a de t he tw o s ho rt f i l ms , “My D e a r B a n q u e t ” a nd “The Unk no w n Mo ther “ be fore t h e m a k i n g o f t he f e ature f i l m. Your fi l m T h e U n kno w n M o the r s t ars g reat a ct ress S u sa n S h aw, ho w di d yo u de c i de to

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cast her, and did she immediatel y w a n t to play in the film? Susan Shaw is a g reat actress w i th m o re than 5 0 y ear s of acting exper ien c e i n Asia. She is able to play differen t ty p es of roles in different g enres of fi l m s . Both my Kenny and I took the v i ew th a t Susan is the most appropr iate p er s o n to play the role of the mother in th e s to r y. We therefore eng ag ed our produ c ti o n company to discuss wth Susan ab o u t th e role. She likes the role and the s c r i p t a lot and she accepted our inv itati o n w i th no doubt. W hat are y our future plans? Kenny and I hav e two scr ipts re a d y o n our table. One of the scr ipt is a n A s i a n feature and shooting will be in Ho n g Ko n g some time this y ear. We are now w o r ki n g with the director and the screen p l a y wr iter day and nig ht to per fect th e s c r i p t and discuss the scenes. The other scr ipt is g oing to be sh o t i n to an E ng lish feature. It’s a comed y -d r a m a and will be multicultur al and ha v e a number of acting roles in the fi l m . We are prepared to recr uit a number o f actor s and actresses from differen t eth n i c or ig ins. Ag ain, we face a difficu l t ta s k to ensure that the actor s and actre s s es w i l l hav e the chemistr y on screen. We a re wor king closely with our executi v e p roducer s to finalize a schedule r igh t n o w.


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I a m a l s o v e ry i n s p i re d by fa c t s t h a t p e rt a i n t o t h e w o rl d o f m e d i c i n e a n d n a t u ra l s c i e n c e s be c a u s e i a m c h a l l e n g e d t o q u e s t ion t h e m a n d a p p ro a c h t hem fro m a d i ffe re n t a n g l e , t r y in g t o g o be y o n d t h e m , t h rou g h t h e m e d i u m o f a rt . Al s o g re a t m i n d s s u c h a s L e o n a rd o d a Vi n c i i n s p ire m e g re a t l y be c a u s e o f t h eir w h o l i s t i c a n d i n t e rc o n n ect ed v i e w o n t h e w o rl d a ro u n d u s a n d o u r bo d y. I t i s p re c i s e l y fro m t h e s e t h i n g s , t h a t i fi n d m y en er g y ; fro m m y c u ri o s i t y a bo u t t h e w o rl d a ro u n d m e a s wel l a s within me.

EVA PETRIC

V er s at ile Mu ltime dia Ar ti s t

Yo u wo rk i n di ff erent media; dance, dec o ra t i v e a rt , v i de og raphy, pho togr ap hy, f ashion. Also y o u w ri t e fi c t i o n a n d wo rk as an arti st. Who and what insp ire s y o u t h e m o s t ? W h ere do yo u find your ener gy? I a m i nspi re d b y things that are of ten o v e rl o o k e d o r s u ppre s se d o n the level within the collecti v e s p a c e o f s o c i e t y, pe r so nal spac e of an individual or con c re t e p h y s i c a l s p a c e o f the e nvi ro nment. I am insp ired b y w h a t g o e s o n i n s i d e , i n t he i nte rnal wor ld within the p syche a s w e l l a s bo d y o f t h e hum an, and the greater b ody of th e e n v i ro n m e n t . C olle c ti v e e m o tional tr aumas and hema t o m a s a t t ra c t m e and i nspi re m e to tr y to make them vis i bl e a n d a u d i bl e t h roug h m y re fl ection on them with my a rt . I a m i n s p i re d t o se e the po te nti al in them f or change.

Wh y d o h u m a n o rg a n s , f or e x a m p l e h e a rt , fe a t u re s o m u c h i n yo u r a rt , i n p a r t icul a r i n yo u r p e rfo rm a n ce? T h e h e a rt fa s c i n a t e s me! B o t h a s a n o rg a n a n d in credi bl e i n t ri c a t e m a c h i n e , a s w e l l a s t h e u n i v e rs a l c ol l ect i v e s y m bo l o f h u m a n it y t h a t i t h a s be c o m e . I t i s bo t h t h e g i v e r a n d t h e k e e p e r of l if e a n d l o v e , a s w e l l a s t h e on e w h o d e t e rm i n e s t h e s t a r t a n d e n d o f o u r p re s e n c e here in t h i s l i fe fo rm o f t h e hu m a n bo d y, a n d i n t h i s s p a c e of t h e p h y s i c a l Ea rt h . F u rt h e r m ore, i t s d u a l i t y a s be i n g bo t h a v e ry fra g i l e o rg a n (e v er y t h in g i n i t n e e d s t o w o rk ri g h t in


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o r d er fo r the he a r t and thus also the e nti re body to f unct i on pro pe rly) , but at the sam e ti m e also ver y dur ab le ( f or e xam ple the hear t dur ing an ope rati o n c an handle a lot o f adaptati o ns a nd intense m o d ulati o ns) c ap tivates me. B e i n g the so c alled keep er o f t i me fo r us humans since

i t d e te rm i ne s th e b eginni ng and e nd o f our lives, i se e it as the li fe p ump and also a se at o f e motions, repre s enti ng bo th the p hysical as w e ll as m e tap hor ical and e p he m e ral di m e n sion of ex ist enc e. Thus, i t i s the p er f ect f oc u s fo r m y art which deals wi t h pre se rv i ng the human aspe c t and ai m s at ex p osing t h e ofte n i nvi si b le connect i ons that e xi st amongst each o t h er, be the m p hysical, emot i onal, o r m e tap hor ical. Last b u t n o t le ast, e a ch and ever y o ne o f us m am malians has a he a r t, wi th i ts own electr ic a l i m pulse i nfluencing each o t h er, i n vi si ble and invisib le way s . To m e , i t is my sanct u a r y, the li fe force and seat

of my in n e r w o rl d t h a t w e a l l have an d w h i c h n o o n e c a n take aw a y fro m u s a n d w h i c h is with u s w h e re v e r w e g o , always a c c e s s i bl e t o u s .

An d t h i s t h e y a c h i e v e in t h e fo rm o f a l i v i n g bo d y.

D o yo u be l i e v e i n t h e et ernity of the human soul? I be l i e v e i n e n e rg y, w h ich i For my p e rfo rm a n c e i u s e t h e fe e l a s a c o m bi n a t i o n of p ositive o f t h e re a l h u m a n p a s s i o n , c u ri o s i t y, e n t h uhear t as a s y m bo l o f t ra n ss i a s m a n d v i s i o n , e x pres sp lanting t h e h u m a n ra c e o n t o ing itself as idealism and w i s h t o c re a t e a n d m a t er ia l i z e . T h i s e n e rg y i b el iev e t ra n s l a t e s , re p l i c a t e s , ref orm u l a t e s , u p d a t e s . I b el iev e i t h a s be e n t ra n s l a t i n g a n d t ra n s fo rm i n g a n d g o i n g t h ro u g h n u m e ro u s t ra ns c ri p t i o n s a s h a s , a n d is g o i n g o n w i t h D N A of l iv in g o rg a n i s m s , s i n c e a l on g l on g t i m e , i n c o n c e i v a bl e t o u s . B u t i d o n o t fe e l t h i s is in f in i t e . I t h i n k a s t h e en er g y c a m e t o e x i s t o n e d a y it ca n other p l a n e t s a n d q u e s t i o n i n g also cease to exist one day wheth e r t h i s c a n be d o n e , a s s o t h a t i t c a n be g i n to ex is t the p e rfo rm a n c e s t a t e s :� s h e a g a i n a t a n o t h e r m o m en t in tore ou r h e r h e a rt a n d p l a n t e d a g i v e n c o n t e x t u n t h in ka b l e it in a c o n t a i n e r o f o x yg e n , a n d u n i m a g i n a bl e t o u s a t we all c o m e fro m t h i s h e a rt � . t h i s m o m e n t a n d p h a s e of our development. How in y o u r v i e w a re t h e human bo d y a n d s o u l c o nWh a t a re y o u r p l a n s f or t h e nected a n d i n fl u e n c i n g e a c h fu t u re ? other ? Here i n t h i s t i m e a n d d i m e nsion of s p a c e o n p l a n e t Ea rt h , in the fo rm a s w e e x i s t , a s human s , t h e y a re t o t a l l y f used, a n d i n t e rre l a t e d , a s i f b eing i n l o v e . T h a t i s h o w i see an d fe e l t h e m . T h e y i n fl uence e a c h o t h e r, s e a rc h fo r one an o t h e r a n d n e e d e a c h other t o e x i s t ; t h e y n e e d t o c o - ex ist i n o rd e r t o e x i s t h e re .

To c o n t i n u e t o fo l l o w m y c u ri o s i t y t h a t l e a d s m e a n d fu e l s m y p a s s i o n t o c re a t e a n d p ro v i d e s m e w it h e n e rg y t o m o v e t o w a r d s t h e t h i n g s i fe e l i n o rd e r t o b e a bl e t o m a t e ri a l i z e t h em . Fo r t h e fu t u re , i h o p e t o re a l i z e o n e o f m y s t o r ies p u bl i s h e d a s a n o v e l in t o a m o v i n g p i c t u re .

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POWER OF THE INCOMPREHENSIBLE Powerf u l a da p ta t i o n o f th e Alexa nder G r i n n ove l d i re cte d by D iana R i n g o Diana Ringo interviewed by Günther Kramer W h y di d yo u de cide to adap t t h e s ho rt sto ry “POWER O F T H E IN C OMPREHENSIB LE” as a f i l m? D u r i ng the quara ntine I was re a d ing v ari o us novels and st or ie s by Ale xan der Gr in. I was drawn to the stor y. The

theme of t h e s u bc o n s c i o u s mind inte re s t s m e g re a t l y the link be t w e e n m a d n e s s a n d creativity fa s c i n a t e s m e . Can you e l a bo ra t e m o re o n t h e top ic? The compl e x i t y o f t h e h u m a n p syche - e x i s t e n c e o f fre e w i l l ,

h o w h yp n o s i s c o u l d p os s ibl y a ffe c t t h e m i n d a n d s pir it o f m a n i s a l s o a n i m p or t a n t question. Ho w d o e s t h e s o u l a ffect t h e bra i n a n d h o w d o e s t h e b r a in a ffe c t t h e s o u l ? I t i s a qu est i o n m a n y w ri t e rs , p h il os op h e rs , p s yc h i a t ri s t s t r y t o g ra p p l e w i t h , bu t n o c l ea r answer exists. Wh a t i s t h e s t o ry a bo u t ? T h e m a i n c h a ra c t e r o f t h e n o v e l i s v i o l i n i s t Gra z i a n Duplet who is haunted by be a u t i fu l m u s i c i n h is d re a m s . T h e m u s i c i a n w a n t s


INDIE CINEMA Magazine | 2020 | Issue 1

Ho w d o y o u fe e l a bo u t t h e fi l m i n d u s t ry t o d a y? T h e c u rre n t C o v i d - 1 9 p a n dem ic h a s c h a n g e d t h i n g s ra d ica l l y. Ho l l y w o o d p ro d u c t i o n s s t r u gg l e t o g e t ba c k i n t o bu s in es s . A l a rg e a m m o u n t o f c i n em a s a re c l o s i n g p e rm a n e n t l y a ro u n d t h e g l o be . I t i s a s a d s t a t e i n d e e d n owa d a ys fo r fi l m m a k e rs w or l dwide. But on the other hand, v i d e o o n d e m a n d p l a t f or m s , i n c l u d i n g N e t fl i x , a re n ow g a i n i n g m o re p ro m i n e n ce. D irector D iana Ringo with the mask which she created herself

t o rem e m be r the melody and play i t i n re ali ty. He resor ts t o t he he lp o f th e hyp notist R um i e r. R um i e r, e nds up stop p ing t h e s e anc e and makes Dup let f or ge t hi s pe rfo r mance. D u p le t e nte rs the hyp notists o ff i ce wi th fanta sies and illusi o ns, but e nds up b ecoming a h ollo w she ll o f a p er son in t h e end.

Does ma s s m e d i a h o l d s t ro n g p ower ov e r p e o p l e ? Ever yon e i s a ffe c t e d by m a s s p rop aga n d a - a fo rm o f h ypnosis - w h e t h e r i t i s n e w s , adver tis i n g , ra d i o , fi l m , o r even lite ra t u re . Es p e c i a l l y today in t h e a g e o f C o v i d - 1 9 .

I n d e p e n d e n t fi l m m a k i n g h a s n e v e r be e n a s i m p ort a n t a s be fo re , e s p e c i a l l y in t h e a g e w h e n bi g s t u d ios a re s t ru g g l i n g . We re t h e re o t h e r s o u rc es of i n s p i ra t i o n ? I w a s a l s o i n s p i re d by t h e s t o ry “T h e S c a rl e t F l o w er ” b y Al e x a n d e r Ga rs h i n . C a n yo u t e l l u s m o re a b ou t t h e fi l m .

D o y o u be li e ve that Rumier is a f o rc e o f e v i l? N o , I do no t thi nk that R um i e r i s “e vi l”. The hyp not i s t f i nds the m usic too overpo we ri ng . He si mp ly b ecomes d i st u rbe d and does not wish any one to he ar the melody. Lead actor Erik Sabri

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I t i s the fi rst adap tation o f t h e sto ry, and is tr ansf ere d to m o de rn times. It is ab out a v i o li n pl ayer who v i si t s a hypno ti st who should he l p hi m re c o v e r the melody whi c h haunts hi m in his d re a ms. W h ere i s the stor y set? T h e s to ry i s se t in an unsp eci f i ed Euro pe an city. The f ilm was sho t i n Vi e nna, A ustr ia. C a n yo u te ll m o re ab out your ro le o n the pro j eect? I a m the ac to r, p roducer, d i re cto r, e di to r, comp oser, pro p de si g ne r o f the f ilm.

The mas k s w e re h a n d p ainted by m e fo r t h e fi l m and crea t e d s o m e o f t h e costumes . What do t h e m a s k s s ym bo l i z e in the fi l m ? I was in s p i re d by t h e Afri c a n tr ib al m a s k s . T h e m a s k s ref lect d i ffe re n t s p i ri t s and f ace t s o f a p e rs o n s p er sona l i t y. The tr an s fo rm a t i o n o f t h e soul p la y s a d e e p ro l e i n t h e f ilms na rra t i v e . A p er son u n d e rg o e s m a n y changes t h ro u g h o u t t h e i r l i fe , the var i o u s m a s k s re fl e c t this - it i s be l i e v e d t h a t t h e

p e rs o n w h o w e a rs a m a s k be c o m e s t ra n s fo rm s i n t o a s p e c i fi c s p i ri t . I n t h e c a s e o f Gra z i a n Du pl et , h e t ri e s o u t v a ri o u s m a s ks t h ro u g h o u t h i s l i fe . B u t i n h i s v a i n s e a rc h f or t h e p e rfe c t m e l o d y h e f a ces s o m e t h i n g w o rs e t h a n d ea t h . He e n d s u p l o s i n g w h a t is m o s t i m p o rt a n t , w h a t m a kes u s h u m a n - h i s m i n d a n d h is soul. C a n yo u t e l l u s a bo u t t h e casting? M a n y v e ry g o o d a c t o rs a u d it i o n e d fo r t h e fi l m . I w a s v e ry l u c k y w i t h t h e c a s t - t h e


c h em i stry be tween Sab r i and M i t rofane nk o str uck me, and I kne w i m m e di ately that they we re pe rfe c t fo r their resp ect i v e ro le s. I m provisational sk i l l s we re also ver y imp ort a n t fo r the ac tor s of the f i l m.

Er ik Sab ri , a p ro fe s s i o n a l singer, i m m e rs e d h i m s e l f i n t o the role o f t h e v i o l i n p l a ye r. H owar d N i g h t i n g a l l , w h o p lays th e d o c t o r i s a t h e a t e r actor w i t h m u l t i p l e c re d i t e d roles in t h e Vi e n n a ’s En g l i s h Theatre.

A l t ho ug h the fi lm is in E n gli sh i t has i n ter national c a s t and c re w.

What wa s t h e p ro d u c t i o n like? The f ilm w a s m a d e w i t h a

s k e l e t o n c re w. N a t u ra l l ig h t a l l o w e d fo r i m p ro v i s a t ion a n d c re a t i v e fre e d o m . T h e pict u re i s fu l l o f s ym bo l i s m a n d a l l o w s ro o m fo r t h o u gh t . Wh a t c a m e ra w a s u s e d f or the shooting? Pa n a s o n i c GH5 . I w a s a l s o t h e c i n e m a t o g ra p h e r o f t he f il m .


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RADDA NOVIKOVA H igh prof i l e R u s s i a n fi lm a n d T V d i re cto r give s u s a n in dep th i n ter vi ew a b o u t h e r n e w p ro j e cts

Radda Novikova filming

R ad da, the o nly way to catch you is on a fi l m s e t . N o w y o u hav e j ust fi ni shed shooting a social issu e p ro j e c t a bo u t sc h oo l bullyi ng . What is it? -T h e pro j e c t i s called “Shar p Cur rents”, c o m p a n y “ K i no ag e ntstv o ”, p roducer Max im Katko v. I t re c e i v e d suppo rt o f the state. Dur ing isolation in M o s c o w m y c o aut h o r I lya K o ro b ko and I wrote 2 0 scr ip t s 1 - 8 m i n u t e s e a c h

a bo u t t h e p ro bl e m s o f a d ol e s c e n t s . B u l l yi n g , s u i c id e, s c h o o l s h o o t i n g , a g e - rel a t ed i s s u e s , p ri s o n re g u l a t ion s a m o n g t e e n a g e rs , p re gn a n c y a t 1 3 . T h i s i s a v er y i m p o rt a n t p ro j e c t fo r me, a h u g e n u m be r o f c h i l d ren , bo t h a c t o rs a n d n o n - a c t or s w e re s h o t . N o w I ’m e d it in g t h e fi l m . T h e p ro d u c e r s a re g o i n g t o d i s t ri bu t e t h em on Yo u Tu be , Ti k To k , I n s t a g r a m , Fa c e bo o k , e v e ryw h e re on I n t e rn e t p l a t fo rm s w h ere ch ild re n a n d a d o l e s c e n t s w il l s ee t h e m . I t i s a l s o p l a n n ed t o b e s u bm i t t e d t o fe s t i v a l s . - T h i s i s a v e ry i m p o rt a n t m a t t e r. I n p a ra l l e l w i t h S h a rp C u rre n t s , y o u fi ni s h e d s h o o t i n g t h e s h or t fi l m M o s k o v s k a ya Go rka . Wh a t i s t h i s s t o ry a bo u t ?


INDIE CINEMA Magazine | 2020 | Issue 1

Moskovskaya Gorka - romantic story based on a story by Alexander Tsypkin, starring Fyodor Bondarchuk D i d yo u re ally film Fyodor B o ndarc huk ? W hat is his role? -T h i s i s a ro m an tic, lyr ical lo v e sto ry base d on the stor y o f A l e xande r Tsyp kin. Yes, F y o d o r Se rg e e v i ch p layed o ne o f the m ai n roles, b ut I c a n n o t re v e al e xactly which o ne , si nc e i t pla ys an imp ort a n t part o f the p lot develo pm e nt. Andre y Smolyakov, A n a t o ly Be ly, Vi ctor ia Tolsto g ano va also p layed in t h e f i lm . The shooting took plac e fro m Fe bru ar y to June, t h e s no w o f the f ir st shooti ng d ay and m i nus 2 0 , when e v er y o ne be c am e numb f rom t h e co ld, the n i t was necessar y to i m i tate w ith a snow m ac h i ne and i n the end alre a dy i n the pa vilion. - Your we b se ri es f or the O K KO platfo rm recently went o n t he ai r, whe re you wor ked i n a ve rti c al fo rmat. What it i s?

- For O K KO a n d S be rba n k , t h e shor t f il m “C o p yw ri t e rs ” w a s f ilmed b a s e d o n t h e s c ri p t b y A lex a n d e r Ts yp k i n , ra t h e r interesti n g s t o ry, w h i c h a c t ually was s h o t i n a v e rt i c a l f or mat, a n d w a s v e ry d i fficult f or t h e c i n e m a t o g ra p h e r who is u s e d t o s h o o t i n g h o rizontally. B u t t h a t w a s t h e req uireme n t o f t h e p l a t fo rm . The f ilm s t a rs I g o r Pe t re n k o , Yulia Top o l n i t s k a y a , Art e m Nemov. T h i s i s a n i n t i m a t e stor y th a t d e v e l o p s fro m a regular c h a t o n a d a t i n g s i t e .

T h e s e c o n d w e b s e ri e s is “ N o t e s o f a Ho t e l i e r” a b ou t a v e ry p o p u l a r h o t e l “He l v et ia ” t h a t re a l l y e x i s t s i n S t . Pe t e rs bu rg , t h e s e ri e s w a s fi l m e d a n d ba s e d o n th e b ook o f t h e o w n e r o f t h e h ot el , Yu n i s Te y m u rk h a n l i , t h is is a c o m e d y i n t h e fo rm a t of 1 0 m i n u t e e p i s o d e s (10 epis o d e s ) , i t a i re d w i t h h ig h ra t i n g s a n d a s e c o n d s ea s on is planned. - Wh a t a re yo u r p l a n s f or t h e fu t u re ?

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RADDA NOVIKOVA

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Filming of Shar p Cur rents Powerful project about the problems which sur round young people today

FILM ABOUT P ROBLEMS OF TO DAY ’S YOUTH; IN CLUD IN G BULLYIN G , SUICID E, SCHOOL SHOOTIN G S, JUVEN ILE DELIN QUEN CY, TEEN PREG N AN CY


INDIE CINEMA Magazine | 2020 | Issue 1

-I f i ni she d the s cr ip t f or the f u l l - le ng th dram a “Sp indle” ab out wo m e n v i ctims of the pat r i arc hal wo rld. In Russia, t h i s i s a v e ry se nsitive top ic, g i v e n that the c ountr y is “ m ale ” and a law on domest i c vi o le nc e has not even b ee n ado pte d. B y e n d o f the summer we m ust also start f ilming a d r a me dy fo r the Comedy Club pro g ram o n T N T, commissi o ne d by Se m yon Slep akov. I a l s o wro te a satir ical web se r i e s abo ut alc oholics, now we are planni ng to shoot a pi lo t e pi so de i n A ugust. It wi ll b e ho t. -I can o nly wi sh you great luc k!

Additio n a l in f or ma t ion a b ou t Ra dda Novik ova ’s proje cts: A n g el ic a Pa s h k ova is p roduce r of “M os k ovs k a y a Gorka ”. V a r iou s s t a r s of Russia n s h ow b u s in es s ma d e a p pe a ra n c es in “N ot es of t h e H ote lie r ” , a s w el l a s I r in a Te mich e va , I l y a K orob k o, Ale xa nd er N evz orov, M a r in a Fe dunkiv.

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FEATURE FILM - 96 MIN DIRECTED BY RAY SPIVEY & JEFF KERR writersblock2019.com


INDIE CINEMA Magazine | 2020 | Issue 1

EXPOSED SHORT FILM - 9 MIN

DIRECTED BY MATTI LEINIKKA

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D avid Hemmings in “Blow-Up

ART AND ALIENATION The year 2020 was perhaps the most critical for the development of the capitalist society, because all of the processes which were going on during the last few decades accelerated just within a few months by establishing a world-wide regime under the pretext of the Covid-19 pandemic. T h e pro c e ss o f alienation was going on s i n c e t h e i n c e p t i o n o f c api tali sm and is ver y well descr ib e d by K a rl M a rx , J e a n Paul Sartre and other p rogressive p hilos o p h e rs . Ho w e v e r, i n 2020 c api tali sm stop p ed hiding under th e m a s k o f d e m o cr a cy and m ade alienation of p eop le the m o s t i m p o rt a n t l a w o f li fe .

Pe o p l e be c a m e n o t o n l y a l i e n a t e d fro m t h e m os t i m p o rt a n t h u m a n n e e d s , s u ch a s s o c i a l i z a t i o n , e n t e r t a inm e n t , fre e d o m o f t ra vel , b u t e v e n a re n o t a l l o w e d t o ph y si c a l l y t o u c h e a c h o t h e r, t o c o m e c l o s e t o e a c h o t h er, t o s h a k e h a n d s o r e m bra ce ea ch o t h e r, t o v i s i t t h e i r e l d er l y re l a t i v e s i n re t i re m e n t h o m e s , s o t h e y be c a me a l iena t e d fro m t h e m o s t i m por t a n t h u m a n e s s e n t i a l n e e d s . Du e t o t ra v e l re s t ri c t i o n s f a m il y m e m be rs be c a m e e s t ra n g ed fo r m o n t h s . A s m a l l a m o u n t o f p e opl e a re i n p o w e r, a n d u n i f ica t ion o f p e o p l e p o s e s a t h re a t t o t h e m , s o o n l y h u m a n a l iena t i o n c a n s a v e t h e c o r r u pt ed p o w e r. Pe o p l e w h o ru l e t h e s o c i e t y s t i l l re m e m be r t h e y e a r 1 9 1 8 a n d u n d e rs ta n d that the same thing can h a p p e n t o d a y. Po w e r o f t h e 1 % o v e r t h e 99% i s p o s s i bl e o n l y t h ro u g h t h e m a n i p u l a t i o n o f t h e min d s of t h e bra i n w a s h e d m a s s es . Th e


INDIE CINEMA Magazine | 2020 | Issue 1

r u l es re g ardi ng Covid-1 9 are r i d i culo us and ab sur d. M ai nstre am m e d ia is f ull o f f a k e ne ws and censored. E v en m aj o r so urces of inf orm at i on suc h as Faceb ook, G oo g le , hav e g lob al censo r s h i p, and se r ves as an i nst r um e nt o f alienation. E v en no rm al breathing, most hum ane and natur al need, is o ut l a we d. T h roug h the i ntroduction of m andato ry fac e masks, the c a p i tali sts hav e alienated pe ople fro m bas ic emotions, suc h as se e i ng f acial ex p ressi o ns, e nj o yi ng n or mal conv e r sati o ns, fe e ling of individuali ty and fre e dom. Peop le lo st the i r fac e s, their smiles, t h ei r e m o ti o ns and b ecame slav e s o f the i r muzzles. D ec l a rati o n o f human r ights, ac ce p te d afte r th e war b ec a m e no thi ng more than a j ok e , as no ne of human r i ghts are v ali d anymore. A r t i s the g re atest danger to c a p i tali sm , as i n dep endent and ho ne st art can aff ect pe ople m o re than dr y news he a d li ne s. T he ref ore, all theat er s , c ultural e vents were i m m e di ate ly c lo sed, and are sti ll shut. Concer ts are c a n ce le d. C u l t ure to uc he s the soul unli k e so urc e s of mass inf orm at i on and so create a threat f or di c tato rshi p.

I n o r d e r to a n a l y z e the p res en t s ta te of c i n e m at o g rap hy I n e e d to u s e t h e t h e or y of a l i e n a ti on . More th a n 1 7 0 ye a rs a g o K a rl Mar x wro t e h i s C a p i t a l , w h e re he b r ill i a n t l y a n a l y s e s t h e p henome n o n o f a l i e n a t i o n i n the cap i t a l i s t s o c i e t y. Nowada y s w e c a n s e e t h a t h i s wor ds, w ri t t e n a t t h e e a rl y stage of c a p i t a l i s t d e v e l o pment, b e c a m e p ro p h e t i c . I n cap itali s t s o c i e t y e v e ry t h i n g , includin g a rt a n d c i n e m a t o gr ap hy, be c o m e c o m m o d i t i e s . Cinema t o g ra p h y i s a h u g e l y p rof itabl e bu s i n e s s a n d a n imp or ta n t m e a n fo r c a p i t a l i s t s to gene ra t e g re a t p ro fi t s a n d also a po w e rfu l p ro p a g a n d a tool. Production a n d C on s u mpt ion of Art i n a C a pit a l is t Soc iet y Mar x w ro t e t h a t a rt i s t s , l i k e scientis t s a n d i n t e l l e c t uals, cou l d n o t e s c a p e fro m the gen e ra l c o n v e rs i o n o f a l l human c re a t i v i t y i n t o c o mmodities . F i rs t l y t h i s i s b ecause a rt i s t s , l i k e a l l o t h e r wor ker s , a re d e p e n d e n t o n their abi l i t y t o m a k e m o n e y: “The b o u rg e o i s i e h a s s t ri p p e d of its h a l o e v e ry o c c u p a t i o n hither to h o n o re d a n d l o o k e d up to w i t h re v e re n t a w e . I t has con v e rt e d t h e p h y s i c i a n , the law y e rs , t h e p ri e s t , t h e p oet, th e m a n o f s c i e n c e , i n t o its p aid w a g e l a bo u re rs ” .

T h e fa c t t h a t w o rk s of a r t a n d fi l m s a re s o l d o n t h e m a rk e t s h a p e s e v e ry l ev el o f t h e i r c o n c e p t i o n a n d prod u c t i o n . M a rx g a v e o n e e x a m p l e o f t h i s i n h i s cr it i q u e o f t h e n o v e l s of Eu g e n e S u e , i n w h i c h h e ‘s t re s s e s t h e i n fl u e n ce u pon t h e a u t h o r o f t h e e t h ica l a n d p o l i t i c a l a s s u m pt ion s o f i t s i n t e n d e d bo u rgeois p u bl i c ’.

N e i the r c a n a r t e sc ap e c om m od i ty f e ti s hi sm: “ I f on e f or m of s p iri tu a l i z i n g m y s ti f i cati on ha s b e e n e ro ded b y e x pa n s i on of c o mm e rc e – the rom a nt ic a pothe os i s of the art s a s s oa r i n g a b ove mat er i a l re a l i ty – a n e w f e ti s hi s m ha s re pl ac ed i t: the f e ti s hi s m of c om m od i ti e s ”. – Eugene Lunn I n t h e w e s t e rn c o n s u m er s o c i e t y t h e p ro bl e m o f t h e alienation of man is the m o s t i m p o rt a n t o n e . Th e ra p i d d e v e l o p m e n t o f a l iena t i o n i s a n i n d i c a t o r of t h e changing position of the i n d i v i d u a l i n s o c i e t y. T h e p ro bl e m o f a l i e n a t ion t a k e s o n a n e w m e a n in g in m a n y w a ys a s i n t h e m od er n e ra w h e n g l o ba l i z a t i on

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t h reate ns the g lob al communi t y ro llbac k from p roduct i v e to the m o netar ist p r inciple i n the e c o nomy of a p lur a l i s ti c syste m of inter nat i onal re lati o ns to the dict a t e s o f uni late ralism in i nt ernati o nal po litics. Claims o f g lo bal fi nanc ial and p olitic a l appro v al o f a glob al wor ld o r d er le d to a state of univ e r sal, g lo bal al ienation. Vi o lati o n o f trad itional ties – f am i ly, nati o nal, human, spi r itual – le ads to the denat i onali zati o n o f man and the at om i zati o n o f s ocial lif e. T h e re sult o f i t is a sense of lo ss o f hi g h i de als and the m e a n i ng o f e xi stence, p essim i sm and and loneliness. T h e p he no m e no n of p osti nd ustri al so c i e ty – alienation – i s be c o m i ng a glob al enviro nm e ntal, i ndus tr ial, technolo g i c al, spi ri tual or der of lif e. Po st - m o de rni st society of ten lo se s a ho li sti c view of lif e and i ts m e ani ng. The b reakd o wn o f tradi ti onal social st r uc ture s, the u sual f or ms o f so c i al li fe , the p rocess of ali e n ati o n fro m gover nment, t h e re sults o f lab or, alien at i on o f art, o f the nature – all of thi s sug g est the need f or phi lo so phi c a l under standi ng of the vari o u s f or ms of ali e n ati o n; e nv i ronmental, t ec h n i c al, po li ti cal, mor al, g lo b a l, e tc . K ar l Marx i n the “Economic and Phi lo so phi c al M anusc ri pts o f 1 8 4 4 ”

S cene from “Red D esert”

analyses t h e s o c i a l re l a t i o n s p rob lem o f a l i e n a t e d l a bo r. Dur ing t h e X X c e n t u ry p h i l osop hica l re fl e c t i o n s e e p e d i n t o concrete m a n i fe s t a t i o n s o f t h e p henom e n o n o f a l i e n a t i o n i n diff eren t c u l t u re s a n d s e p ar ate sp h e re s o f s o c i a l re a l i t y. Signif ica n t c o n t ri bu t i o n t o t h e study of t h e p ro bl e m o f a l i e nation ma d e p h i l o s o p h y o f e x i stentialis m . I n t h e w o rk s o f A lb er t C a m u s , J e a n - Pa u l S a rt re and oth e rs t h e re w e re p ro positions o f v a ri o u s w a ys t o overcom e t h e a l i e n a t e d s t a t e through t h e a c t i v a t i o n o f i n d ividual a bi l i t i e s . In p hilos o p h y, t h e Ru s s i a n ex istent i a l i s t t h i n k e rs s u c h as Nikol a i B e rd y a e v d e s c ri be d the p rob l e m o f a l i e n a t i o n fro m the p er s p e c t i v e o f t h e d e vastating i m p a c t o n t h e s p i ritual worl d o f v a ri o u s fo rm s o f ob jectif i e d w o rl d – e c o n o m y, technolog y, g o v e rn m e n t , a n d

o t h e rs . B e rd ya e v ’ p h i l os op h y o f a l i e n a t i o n i s c en t r a l t o t h e u n d e rs t a n d i n g t h e o bj e c t i fi c a t i o n o f re a l it y in w h i c h m a n l o s t “a h i er a rch ic a l p l a c e i n t h e u n i v e r s e. ” I t m e a n s t h a t M a n e xis t s t h e w o rl d w h e re t h e d eg ree o f “ fo rc e d m a t e ri a l i t y ” is d i re c t l y p ro p o rt i o n a l t o t h e d e g re e o f a l i e n a t i o n . I n p o s t - m o d e rn i s t s ociet y n e w c u l t u ra l d e v e l o pm en t s a re ra p i d l y i n c o rp o ra t ed i n t o t h e s y s t e m a s mere commodities. Of c o u rs e t h e n a t u re of c i n e m a i s d i ffe re n t from s i m p l e c o m m o d i t i e s l ike C o c a - C o l a e t c . s o i t i s d iffi c u l t t o re d u c e i t t o t h e s a m e l e v e l . C i n e m a t og r a ph y h a s a n i m p o rt a n t c u lt u r a l a n d i d e o l o g i c a l i m p a c t on s o c i e t y. On l y fe w d i re ct o rs d e v o t e t h e i r e n er g ies t o a t t e m p t t o re a c h b ey on d


INDIE CINEMA Magazine | 2020 | Issue 1

c a p i tali sm as m ost choose to pro f it fro m the system.

Eu g e n e L u n n wro te: “W e ca n n o t re duc e a r t to e x c ha n g e ra t e s reflec ti ng t h e p e r v a s iv e a l i enat i on . E v e n w ith i ts ha l o re mo v e d , a r t wa s c a p a bl e of d ia g n o s in g , a nd p o i nti ng be y o n d a l i e n a t ing s o c i a l and e c o n o m i c co ndi ti o ns … A l l a r t ha s t he c a p a c i ty t o c re a t e a n e ed fo r a est h e t i c e n j o y m e nt a nd educ ati o n w hi ch ca p i ta l i s m c ann o t s a t i s f y. Altho ugh c omi n g i n cre a s i ngl y under t h e in f l u e n ce o f the ma rk e tp l a c e , a r t is p ro duc ed and co n s u m e d i n rela ti v e auto n o m y a n d i s no t i dent i c al t o f a ct o r y w o r k o r to a pu re c o m m o di ty.” A n othe r appli c ation of M ar x ’s the o ry o f alienation i s i n the fo rm ula tion of an

analysis o f o t h e r a c t i v i t i e s outside t h e s p h e re o f w o rk , which w e u n d e rt a k e t h ro u g h own cho i c e . Wh e n t h e w o rl d o f ever yda y w o rk be c o m e s m i s e rab le an d a l i e n a t i n g t h e p e o p l e b ecome m o re i n t e re s t e d i n lif e af te r w o rk ; e n t e rt a i n m e n t and hobbi e s . L e i s u re I n d u s t ry ver y q ui c k l y fu l fi l l e d t h i s n e e d and off e re d s u bs t i t u t e s fo r l i fe itself .

t h e c a p i t a l i s t a n d t h e ref ore d o n o t i n t e re s t t h e w or ker. T h i rd , C h a p l i n i s a l i e n a t ed fro m t h e o t h e r p e o p le. Th e bo ri n g w o rk re q u i re s n o crea t i v i t y, w h i c h M a rx b el iev es t o be a n e s s e n t i a l e l e m en t o f h u m a n n a t u re . F i n a l l y, t h e w o rk e rs a re a l i e n a t ed fro m e a c h o t h e r, t h e re is n o re a l c o m m u n i c a t i o n b et w een them.

Inde p e n d en t C in ema t og ra ph y T h e fi l m w a s m a d e i n t h e re fle cts a l ien a t ion of ou r t imes . p e ri o d o f be g i n n i n g of ca pi t a l i s m a n d re fl e c t a l ienO ne of th e fi rs t fi l m s d e p i c ta t i o n o f t h e w o rk i n g cl a s s . ing alien a t i o n i s M o d e rn Ti m e s Aft e r t h e e c o n o m i c m ir a cl e b y Charl e s C h a p l i n . C h a rl i e o f t h e l a t e 5 0 s a n d ea r l y Chap lin ’s c h a ra c t e r i s a l i e n a t e d 6 0 s , fe e l i n g s o f a l i e n a t ion f rom th e p ro d u c t i o n p ro c e s s . a n d e s t ra n g e m e n t w ere f el t O n the a s s e m bl y l i n e , h e h a s by m e m be rs o f a l l s o cia l no contro l o v e r t h e s p e e d o f c l a s s e s , fro m t h e a ri s t othe assem bl y l i n e . He i s a l s o c ra t s t o t h e w h i t e - c o l l a r alienate d o f t h e p ro d u c t s h e employees. made. I t i s n o t e v e n c l e a r f rom th e fi l m w h a t e x a c t l y h e A c l a s s i c a l c i n e m a t o gr a ph ic is p rodu c i n g . L i k e a n y c a p i t a lstudy of alienation is the so ist enterp ri s e , t h e s e p ro d u c t s c a l l e d ‘Al i e n a t i o n Tri l og y ’ will b eco m e t h e p ro p e rt y o f by M i c h e l a n g e l o An t on ion i c o n s i s t i n g o f L’Av v e n t u r a , Ec l i p s e a n d L a N o t t e . As t h e i n i t i a l e x c i t e men t o f c o n s u m e ri s m , m a t er ia li s m a n d e m p l o ym e n t s u bs i d e d , p e o p l e be g a n t o re a l i z e t h a t t h e y w e re g iv in g u p a c h a n c e fo r m e a n in g , fu l fi l l m e n t a n d h a p p i n es s i n re t u rn fo r m o n e y a n d status.

Monica Vitti in a scene from “Red D esert”

T h e c i t y i n t h e fi l m E cl ips e i s n o t o n l y a c i n e m a t ic e x p re s s i o n o f t h e i r s y m b ol ic

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ali e n ati o n, but i s a liter al c reati o n o f the i r mor al despe r ati o n and m ater ial f etishi sm . The fi lm re f lects desp air, i so lati o n, and e motional ali e n ati o n fro m other s. T h e s ti llne ss o f the camer a e mphasi ze s sti ll lif elessness o f t h e bui ldi ng s, ter r ain and

b etween t h e m .

w a y o f l i fe .

A rchitect u re p l a ys a bi g ro l e in Anton i o n ’s fi l m s . He w a s an ar tis t a n d m o s t l y e n j o ye d dr awing h o u s e s be c a u s e h e f elt tha t t h e re i s a n u n t o l d stor y b e h i n d a n y fa c a d e . This atte n t i o n t o e n v i ro nment b en e fi t s h i m i n h i s

F i n n i s h d i re c t o r Ak i K a u ri s m ä k i a l s o i n v e s t ig a t e s p ro bl e m s o f a l iena t i o n . F i n l a n d i s o n e of t h e m o s t ” c i v i l i z e d ” cou nt ri e s i n t h e w o rl d a n d t h erefo re a l i e n a t i o n h a s re a ch ed t h e h i g h e s t d e g re e t h ere, w h a t i s re fl e c t e d e s pec i a l l y w e l l i n t h e fi l m Th e M a t c h Fa c t o ry Gi rl . T h e prot a g o n i s t i s a yo u n g g ir l e s t ra n g e d fro m h e r a l coh o l i c p a re n t s , fro m h er bo ri n g , m o n o t o n o u s w or k a t t h e fa c t o ry, fro m t h e g ra y bl e a k c i t y w i t h h orre n d o u s m o d e rn a rc h it ect u re , fro m t h e o t h e r peopl e. U n l i k e An t o n i o n i , w h os e f il m h e ro e s a re m a i n l y p a s s iv e s u bj e c t s o f a l i e n a t i o n , K a u ri s m ä k i s h o w s p rot es t a g a i n s t t h i s a l i e n a t i on – t h e m a t c h fa c t o ry g i rl be com es a m u rd e re r.

Ma ria S chneider and Jack Nicholson in “ The Passenger ”

i m ag e – i llustrating a hear tle s s c i ty. T hi s i s ex emp lif i ed by Anto ni o ni’s p ictor i a l i nte re st i n u niq ue cor p or a t e arc hi te c ture. The b uildi ng s are to we ri n g monoli t h s and thro ugh A ntonioni’s wi d e -ang le le ns camer a, we se e a m pli fi e d scener y of p erv asi v e arc hi te c tu re as tiny b ei ng s m o v e i n the low f oreg ro und. The strong contr asts, b a ck g ro und, and environm e n t – o r the visual – def ines e s s enti ally all w e need to k n ow abo ut the se char acter s. T h e l ac k o f any tr ue dr amatic m o v e m e nt by the camer a i n p arti c ular re presents the lac k o f e m o ti o nal connection

f ilms b e c a u s e “ i t i s t h e v e ry str ucture o f m a rk e t s o c i e t y” . Baudr ill a rd a l s o d e s c ri be s a situation w h e re a l i e n a t i o n i s so total t h a t i t c a n n o t be s u rp assed be c a u s e “i t i s t h e v e ry str ucture o f m a rk e t s o c i e t y” . He states t h a t i n a s o c i e t y w h e re ever yth i n g i s a c o m m o d i t y t h a t can b e bo u g h t a n d s o l d , a l i e nation is t o t a l . I n d e e d , t h e t e rm “alienati o n ” o ri g i n a l l y s i g n i fi e d “to sale ,” a n d i n a t o t a l l y c o mmodif ied s o c i e t y w h e re e v e rything is a c o m m o d i t y, a l i e nation is e v e ry w h e re . M o re o v e r, Baudr ill a rd d e s c ri be s “ t h e e n d of tr ans c e n d e n c e ” w h e re i n d ividuals c a n n e i t h e r p e rc e i v e their ow n t ru e n e e d s o r a n o t h e r

C in ema t og ra ph y ref l e ct s a l ien a t ion of ou r t im e s a n d it b ec omes t h e s ou rce o f even more a l ien a t ion . C i n e m a t o g ra p h y n o w a d a y s c re a t e s a n o t h e r re a l i t y, a n o t h e r w o rl d w h i c h h a s nothing to do with the w o rl d w h e re w e l i v e – a p l a y g ro u n d fo r a d u l t s w h ich t h e y c a n u s e t o e s c a pe f rom t h e i r bo ri n g l i fe . Al l t echn o l o g i c a l a c h i e v e m e n t s a re u s e d t o c re a t e t h i s h y per re a l i s t i c p l a y g ro u n d .


INDIE CINEMA Magazine | 2020 | Issue 1

”W e a l w a y s g o to a hi ghre sol u t i o n , ie o n the w a y t h e p a t h o f s e ns eles s i mpro v in g i m a ge s ha r pne ss . An d a S u per c lea r i mag e ce a s e s t o be a prop e r w a y, t u r ni ng i nto re al i t y, t a kin g p l a c e i n rea l t i me. T h e m o re w e c o me t o t he a b s o l u t e res o l uti o n, t o re a l i s t ic p e r fec ti o n o f t h e im a g e , t h e mo re i t l ose s t h e a b i l i t y to c rea te i l l u s i o n s .” – J e a n B a u d r i lla r d H y p e r-re ali ty i s a system of si g ns re lati ng to that which i s w ithi n i m ag i n ation as o ppo se d to the reality. Thus, phantasm i s the p resence o f t h e i m ag i nary manif est, o r i m pri nte d, wi thin reality. T h e co nc e pt o f s imulacr um to J e a n Baudri llard is that simulat io n le ads i nevitab ly to t h e exti nc ti o n o f the or iginal. T h e b asi s fo r this lies in his f our suc c e ssi ve p hases of the si m ulati o n o f an image. The f i r st stag e “i s th e ref lection o f a basi c re ali ty” which sugg e s t s that at fi rst the simulat i on ac ts as a sign ref er r ing t o a de e pe r m e aning although alre a dy subv e rti ng, b y ref lect i on, the o ri g i nal. However, i n t he se c o nd stage “It (the si m ulati o n) m asks and p erv e r t s basi c re ality”, meaning t h a t the sym bo l has b ecome i n i t se lf a sym bol of the t r ansfo rm ati o n of the or iginal. The thi rd phase,“masks

the ab s e n c e o f a ba s i c reality” a n d d e n o t e s t h a t i n the sym bo l ’s p re s e n c e a s a symb ol t h a t h a s t a k e n o n i t s own tr a n s fo rm a t i o n , t h u s o u t growing o r m o v i n g a w a y fro m the or ig i n a l c o n c e p t , w e c a n no longe r g ra s p t h e re a l i t y it b elon g s (o r be l o n g e d ) t o . Theref ore , t h i s s t a g e i s t h e simulati o n w h i c h d i s g u i s i n g itself as t h e re a l . T h e fo u rt h stage is t h a t “ I t be a rs n o re l ation to a n y re a l i t y w h a t e v e r: i t is its ow n p u re s i m u l a c ru m . ”Recall n o w o n B e i j i n g o p e ra . A s a simp l e m o t i o n o f t w o b odies in a bo a t c a n be re presented , t o m a k e a l i v e t h e whole len g t h o f t h e ri v e r fl o w, when th e t w o bo d i e s c l o s e r t o each oth e r, e s c a p i n g fro m e a c h other, mo v i n g s i d e by s i d e , not touc h i n g e a c h o t h e r, i n t h e invisib le i n t e rc o u rs e c re a t e s a clear p h y s i c a l p re s e n c e o n the dar k s t a g e i n w h i c h t h e b attle ta k e s p l a c e . T h e i l l usion in t h i s c a s e i s t o t a l a n d intense, bro u g h t n o t o n l y t o the aest h e t i c , bu t t o p h y s i c a l ecstasy, a n d p re c i s e l y be c a u s e it is comp l e t e l y a bs e n t a n y realistic p o rt ra ya l o f t h e d a rk or the ri v e r, t h e l a n d s c a p e i s made vi s i bl e o n l y t h ro u g h t h e delightfu l m o v e m e n t o f t w o f igures, g e n e ra t i n g a p e rfe c t l y natur al i l l u s i o n . T h e w e s t e rn op er a in s u c h c a s e s , t h e w a t e r will p ou r o u t o n s t a g e t o n s highligh t ba t t l e i n fra re d ra y s , etc. … Por n o g ra p h y i m a g e i s t h re e

– o r fo u r- d i m e n s i o n a l . Th e m u s i c re c o rd e d o n t h ree, fo u r o r t w e n t y - fo u r tr a cks . Ad d i n g re a l - re a l i n o r d er t o a c h i e v e a p e rfe c t i l l u s ion (i l l u s i o n o f s i m i l a ri t y, t h e p e rfe c t i l l u s i o n o f re a l is t ic s t e re o t y p e ) , w e k i l l in t h e i l l u s i o n o f i t s d e p t h d im ens i o n . Po rn , a d d i n g a n ex t r a d i m e n s i o n o f re a l i s m t o a s e x u a l w a y, d e p ri v e s h im o f m e a s u ri n g d e s i re , rejecti n g a l l t h e s e d u c t i v e a ppea l . T h e a p o g e e o f t h i s d i s f ig u ri n g t h e i m a g e t h ro u gh in t oxi c a t i o n by u n p re c e d en t ed e ffo rt s i n a l l a re a s , s o t h a t the image is no longer a w a y i s d i g i t a l , t h e s y n t h es i z e d i m a g e n u m e ri c a l l y, in v i rt u a l re a l i t y.” T h e re i s a v e ry fa s t t ech n ic a l p ro g re s s o n o n e h a n d and on the other hand a d e g e n e ra t i o n o f t h e s pir it u a l c o n t e n t o f fi l m s . I n d u s t ri a l p a rt o f c i ne m a t o g ra p h y d e v e l o ps q u i c k l y, bu t t h e a rt i s t ic is in decline. The cameras, s p e c i a l e ffe c t s , e t c . a re a bl e t o c re a t e i m a g e s w h ich a re m o re p re c i s e a n d rea li s t i c , h o w e v e r, w h a t t h ey d e p i c t be c o m e s m o re a n d m o re a l i e n a t e d fro m rea l it y, fi l l e d w i t h i m a g e s a n d a c t i n g w h i c h fa l l s d ow n n o n - s t o p o n t h e a u d i en ce l i k e a w a t e rfa l l n o t giv in g a c h a n c e t o t h e s p e c t a t or t o t h i n k . T h e y l e a d t h e a u d ie n c e i n t o a h yp e r re a l is t ic

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wo r l d whi c h has no connect i on to re ali ty. No wonder t h a t supe rhe ro , f antasy and f a i r y tale s fi lm s have b ecome m o re and m o re p op ular. F i l ms abo ut vamp ires rep eat t h e s am e subj e c t again and ag ai n, be c o m i ng a ref lection o f o ne ano the r, lacking intere s t i ng i de as, but, nonethele s s sti ll i n de mand. E v en whe n fi lm maker s tur n t o real sto ri e s, as in the case o f b io g raphi c al films, they are no t i nte re sted in creating any t hi ng c re di bl e or tr uthf ul. T h e only re aso n f or choosing t h e b i o pi c g e nre is to mar ket t h ei r pro duc ts by associat i on wi th we ll k n own p er sonali t i es. Suc h fi lms as Diana ( 2 013), G rac e o f Monaco ( 2 014), L i fe ( 2015 ), Hitchcock ( 2 012), The D ani sh Gir l (2 0 1 5 ) e t c , i nste ad o f u nder taki ng s e ri o us i ssues, concent r at e o n se c o ndar y unimpo r t ant m o m e nts of lif e of f a mo us pe o ple , and even not b ot h e ri ng to c as t suitab le ac t o rs. T he ti tle ”Lif e” of t h e f i lm abo ut J ames Dean is qui t e sym bo li c al in this way, b ec a use what th e f ilm off er s i s a so rt o f parody on James D ean and li fe i n gener al. In t h i s se nse fi lm s which are c onsc i o usly de for ming reality and se lli ng i t to an audience are e v e n wo rse than f air y t a l es, whi c h j ust rep roduce t h e s am e sto ry a gain and ag ai n. T h ey are wo rse b ecause the

f ilmma k e rs c o n s i d e r t h e i r audien c e i g n o ra n t a n d c o nclude t h a t t h e y c a n g i v e t o it any c h e a p s u bs t i t u t e o f reality.

s o c i a l s t ru g g l e , c rit iqu e a n d re a l i t y i t s e l f a s m o re a n d m o re p e o p l e be c a m e a b s or b ed i n t h e h y p e r a n d vir t u a l rea l it i e s o f m e d i a a n d cy b er s pa ce.

Repetition has become the main leitmotiv of postmodernism.

Po s t m o d e rn u n i v e r s e is on e of h y p e rre a l i t y i n w h i ch en t ert a i n m e n t , i n fo rm a t ion , a n d c o m m u n i c a t i o n t e ch n ol og ies p ro v i d e e x p e ri e n c e s m ore i n t e n s e a n d i n v o l v in g t h a n t h e s c e n e s o f ba n a l ev er yd a y l i fe . T h e re a l m of t h e h y p e rre a l (e .g ., m ed ia s im ul a t i o n s o f re a l i t y, Dis n ey l a n d a n d a m u s e m e n t p a r ks , m a l l s a n d c o n s u m e r fa n ta s y l a n d s , T V s p o rt s , a n d o t her ex cu rs i o n s i n t o i d e a l w o r l d s ) is m o re re a l t h a n re a l , w h ereb y t h e m o d e l s , i m a g es , a n d c o d e s o f t h e h yp e r rea l c o m e t o c o n t ro l t h ou g h t a n d be h a v i o r t h e m s e l v e s : a ca rn i v a l o f m i rro rs ref l ect in g i m a g e s p ro j e c t e d f rom ot h er m i rro rs o n t o t h e o m n iprese n t t e l e v i s i o n a n d com pu t er s c re e n a n d t h e s c reen of

Numero u s c i t a t i o n s a re c h a racter is t i c fo r fi l m m a k e rs , even fo r t h o s e w h o s e fi l m s are rec o g n i z e d by c ri t i c s a n d receive d n u m e ro u s p ri z e s . Terence M a l i c k a n d Pa o l o Sor ren t i n o re p e a t Fe l l i n i , Alejan d ro Go n z á l e z I ñ á rri t u rep eats Ta rk o v s k y, L a rs v o n Tr ier i n An t i c h ri s t c o p i e s Tar kovs k y. Ho w e v e r t h e s e cop ies a re v e ry s h a l l o w a n d lack th e d e e p m e a n i n g o f great d i re c t o rs , re p e a t i n g o n l y the tec h n i q u e s o f t h e c l a s s i c a l f ilmma k e rs , n o t t h e i r i d e a s . Glob al i z a t i o n a n d t e c h n o l o gical de v e l o p m e n t p ro d u c i n g standa rd i z a t i o n a n d v i s u a l i z ation are e ra s i n g i n d i v i d u a l i t y,

Willem D afoe in “Antichrist”


INDIE CINEMA Magazine | 2020 | Issue 1

c onsc i o usne ss, w hich in tur n re f e r s the i m ag e to its p rev i o us sto re ho use of images also pro duc e d by simulator y m i r rors. C aug ht up in the uni v e rse o f si m ulations, the “ m asse s” are “b athed in a m e d ia m assag e ” without messag e s o r m e ani n g, a mass age whe re c lasse s disap p ear, and po li ti c s i s de ad, as are the g r a n d dre am s o f desalination, li b erati o n, and revolution. T h e ci ne m ato g rap her today b ec om e s m o re a nd more a slav e o f the i ndustr y as the pro d uc e rs be c o me more and m o re i m po rtant and direct d e p e nde nc e o f the f ilmmake r s f ro m fi nanc i al sup p or t i s evi de nt. G radually f ilms b ec om e m uc h m ore ex p ensive

Charlie Chaplin in Mo der n Times

desp ite t h e fa c t t h a t t e c hnology be c o m e s m o re a c c e ssib le to fi l m m a k e rs a s p ri c e s f or digit a l c a m e ra s a n d fi l m eq uip men t c o n t i n u e t o fa l l , and f ilm s t o d a y a re m o s t l y made di g i t a l l y w h i c h s a v e s a lot of m o n e y. Ho w e v e r m a rketing be c o m e s a l o t m o re imp or ta n t a n d e x p e n s i v e a n d in conse q u e n c e fi l m p roduction be c o m e s a n i n d u str y which i s fu rt h e rm o re commerc i a l i z e d . Films b e c o m e m o re a n d more co m p u t e ri z e d , m a n y are f ilme d o n a g re e n s c re e n what eve n t u a l l y l e a d s t o a n increasi n g g a p be t w e e n t h e f ilms an d re a l i t y. D i ffe re n t media u n i t e w i t h fi l m s t o create a n i l l u s o ry w o rl d

w h i c h i s c a re fu l l y bra n d ed a n d m a rk e t e d . C o m p u t er g a m e s , fi l m s , c o m i c s , t oy s – a re a l l be c o m i n g d i ff ere n t i n s t ru m e n t s o f t h is on e h y p e rre a l i t y.

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INDIE CINEMA Magazine | 2020 | Issue 1

The Music    Critic

Written & Conceived by Aleksey Igudesman

JOHN MALKOVICH, Narrator ALEKSEY IGUDESMAN, Violin SO-OCK KIM, Violin MAX BAILLE, Viola TANJA TETZLAFF, Cello HYUNG-KI JOO, Piano


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The Music    Critic

WRITTEN AND CONCEIVED BY ALEXEY IGUDESMAN

One of the most prestigious venues in the world, Vienna Konzerthaus, togs its main stage up into a legendary Viennese Coffee House setting, representing the tradition where poets, writers, critics and common people aboutvenues any various onutheir O ne o foften the gather m o sttopcomplain restigious in thing, th e sometimesbeeven l i e vifethey s t hare e m s i c oown. f B e e t h o v e n , C h opin , wo r l d , Vi e nna K onzer thaus, togs its main Pro k o fi e v a n d t h e l i k e s t o be w e a ry a n d st a ge up i nto a legendar y d re a ry. Sipping his coffee with an apfelstrudel on the side, John Malkovich slips into the role of the evil critic. Equipped frivolous potpourri of musicalrep insults, he tbelieves the music Vi e n n ewith se aCo ffe e House setting, resen S c h u of m aBeethoven, n n fa n c i Chopin, e s h i mProkofiev s e l f a „ and c o mthe p o s er “ , likes to betiweary and dreary. i ng the tradi o n where p oets, wr iter s, w h i l e B ra h m s i s a „ g i ft l e s s ba s t a rd “ .

c r i t i cs and c o m mon p eop le C l a u d e D e bu s s y i s s i m p l y u g l y. A s a rSchumann fancies himself a „composer“, while Brahms is a „giftless bastard“. simply donic m i x o f tClaude h e m oDebussy s t e v i lism u s i cugly. c ri-A o f t e n sardonic g athe r mix to of comp lain ab out any var i o u s t i q u ewritten s o f tabout h e l asome s t c of e nthe t u rigreatest e s w riworks t t e n ofa b ou t the most evil music critiques of the last centuries t h i n g, music so m eare ti m es even if they are on th e i r s o m e o f t h e g re a t e s t w o rk s o f m u s i c a re presented in The Music Critic. o wn. p re s e n t e d i n T h e M u s i c C ri t i c . S i p pi ng hi s c o ffee with an ap f elstr udel o n t h e s i de , Music J o hnbyMalkovich slip s into the Mozart, Beethoven, Chopin, Dvorak, Brahms, Schumann, Debussy, Kanchelli, Piazzolla and Igudesman. ro le o f the e v i l cr itic. Eq uip p ed with a f r i v o lo us po tpo u r r i of musical insults, h e

LIVE PERFORMANCE - 75 MIN.


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INDIE CINEMA Magazine | 2020 | Issue 1

The Music    Critic

PRODUCTION Produced by

: Music Traveler Productions Vienna Konzerthaus

Video & Audio

: ARTEC Group GmbH

Program Format

: Live Performance

Production Year

: 2020

Genre

: Entertainment

Duration Full

: 75'

Duration TV

: 58'

Video Source

: HD: DNxHD HQX 1080 50i

Audio Source

: 5.1 (Dolby E) or Discreet and Stereo

Aspect Ratio

: 1:1.78 (16:9)

CONTACT Sabina Hasanova Chief Creative Officer, CCO +43 699 19 43 88 71 sabina@mtprods.com


INDIE CINEMA Magazine | 2020 | Issue 1

World Premiere OFFICIAL SELECTION

OFFICIAL SELECTION

VIENNA IndiFF VIENNA, AUSTRIA

INDUS VALLEY IFF NEW DELHI

2020

2020

WINNER

WINNER

HUMANITARIAN AWARD MONACO IFF

OFFICIAL SELECTION

REAL TO REEL INTERNATIONAL FILM FESTIVAL

2020

2020

OFFICIAL SELECTION

WINNER

SR-SOCIALLY RELEVANT FILM FESTIVAL

ENVIRONMENTAL AWARD MONACO IFF

2020

2020

OFFICIAL SELECTION

SWITZERLAND INTERNATIONAL FILM FESTIVAL 2020

OFFICIAL SELECTION

PRAGUE INDEPENDENT FILM FESTIVAL 2020

SEMI-FINALIST

FLICKERS’ RHODE ISLAND INTERNATIONAL FF 2019

WINNER

BEST PRODUCER DOC SHORT MONACO IFF 2020

WINNER

DIRECTING/SHORT WorldFest HOUSTON IFF 2020

OFFICIAL SELECTION

RICHMOND INTERNATIONAL FILM FESTIVAL 2020

LIKE NO OTHER

Documentary Short By Special Invitation - opened the 2020 UNITED NATIONS “CLIMATE CHANGE” FORUM.

2010 Pakistan floods. The worst natural disaster in Pakistan’s history. Global Warming + Climate Change = Climate Refugees “Incredible footage - compelling storytelling”

“It’s probably the single most intimate and anguished scene ever committed to film...” Arctic Film Festival

An Adams-Ahmed-Alam production Executive Producer, producer, writer Claudia Adams Producer, director, cinematographer Aziz Ahmed Producer, post-production Farhan Alam Editor, Michael Paul Girard

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INDIE CINEMA Magazine | 2020 | Issue 1

BALLAD OF A RIGHTEOUS MERCHANT DIRECTED BY HERBERT GOLDER A f re sh and c an did glimp se of one o f the g re a t master s of ci ne m a at wo rk, b y his longtime f r i end ( o f m o re than 2 5 year s) a n d c o llabo rator (on 1 0 f ilms) H erbe rt G o lde r, BALLA D OF A R I GHTEOUS MERCH ANT chronicles We r ne r He rzo g ’s making of the f e a ture fi lm , M Y SON, MY SON, WH AT HAVE Y E DO NE (co-wr itten b y G o lde r), which was nominated f o r a G OLD EN LION at the Venice Fi lm Fe sti val, a nd which star s M i chae l Shannon, Willem Daf oe, a n d C hlo e Se v i gny. M Y SON , MY SON, WH AT HAVE YE DO N E was i nspired b y the tr ue s t o ry o f an ac tor who acted out i n re ali ty the c r ime he was supp o se d to e nac t on stage in a p rod u cti o n o f an ancient Greek p lay: h e m urde re d his mother. B ALLA D O F A R I G HTEOUS MERCH ANT ex p lo re s the process through w h ic h thi s true stor y, itself i n s p i re d by a fiction, is tr ansf o r me d bac k i nto a f iction— that i s , a narrati v e f eature f ilm— once a gai n. U n l i k e o the r documentar ies w h ic h have be en made ab out H erz o g , i n whi ch he stares a l mo st de fi antl y into the camer a

an d , i n h i s i n i m i t a bl e w a y an d i n h i s fa m o u s v o i c e , art i c u l a t e s h i s v i e w s o n life , t h i s fi l m s h o w s a s i d e of h i m k n o w n o n l y t o h i s f r i e n d s a n d c l o s e c o l l a bor a t o rs . Al t h o u g h re fre s hin g l y c a n d i d a n d s u rp ri sin g l y re v e a l i n g , t h i s p o rtra i t i n n o w a y d i m i nis h e s He rz o g ’s m y s t i q u e — q u i t e t h e c o n t ra ry— bu t i t doe s d e e p e n o u r a p p reci a t i o n o f h i s h u m a nity, a n d o ffe rs , t h ro u g h Gol d e r’s ru n n i n g c o m m e nta ry— a s m u c h p a rt o f a n on g o i n g c o n v e rs a t i o n w i t h He rz o g a s a c o n v e rs a t i o n w i t h t h e v i e w e r— a n i n s i der’s i n s i g h t i n t o h i s c ra ft . Ev e n a s w e c o m e c l o s e r to k n o w i n g He rz o g m o re

i n t i m a t e l y i n t h i s f il m , w e a l s o be c o m e i n crea si n g l y a w a re o f h i s pr iv a cy a n d t h e d e e p s o l i tu d e t h a t in some essential way d e fi n e s h i m . He rz og ’s id ea t h a t fi l m s h o u l d b e, n ot a n a l ys i s , bu t a n “ a g it a t ion o f t h e m i n d ” i n fo r m s t h e telling of the story that u n fo l d s h e re . N o t w it h ou t i t s m o m e n t s o f h u m or a n d w a rm t h , B AL L A D O F A RI GHT EOU S M ERCH A NT n o n e t h e l e s s m a n a g es t o e x p l o re , t h ro u g h w h a t w e s e e t a k i n g s h a pe o n s c re e n a n d t h rou g h Go l d e r’s v o i c e o v e r n a rra t i o n , s o m e o f t h e m os t a bi d i n g a n d d e e p es t t h e m e s o f He rz o g ’s f il m s .

DOCUMENTARY - 62 MIN.


INDIE CINEMA Magazine | 2020 | Issue 1

UPPER STORY DIRECTED BY ALESSANDRA PEDROTTI CATONI Upper St o r y i s a feat ure d o cume ntar y ab o u t t h e lo ng- t er m par t n e rs hi p an d t he ex t rao r d i nar y s cien t ific c o llabo rat i o n es t abli s h e d b et w een W es t er n and Ti bet an sc ien t is t s 3 5 year s ag o , w h i ch lea d to t he fo u nd at i o n o f t h e Mi nd & Li fe In s t i t u te i n C h ar lo t t es v i lle , Vir gi n ia b y H i s H o li nes s t h e 1 4 t h Dalai Lama, t h e neuro s ci ent i s t Fran ç i s co Varela and t h e ent rep ren eu r Adam E ngle. Today, the i n stitution is still at the f o ref ro nt o f sc i e ntif ic discover ies relatin g t o t h e m i nd’s potential and, in his unu s u a l ro le as a sc i entist, the Dalai Lama bri ng s us o n an ex p lor ative jour ney t h ro ug h the se revelations sup p or ted by le adi ng ne uroscientists f rom around t h e wo rld suc h as Richar d Davidson, Sus a n B aue r-Wu, Tania Singer and Matthieu R i c ard. F ilm e d i n 8 locations b etween USA , In d i a and the Re pub lic of B otswana, the d o cum e ntary showcases how a new socia l m o ve m e nt fo r glob al change has ar is e n , whi c h m aj o r institutions are joining t h i s m i ssi o n and how the youngest generat io ns are re sponding to our humanity ’s c onte m po rary mind and soul endeavo r. T h ro ug ho ut, it b ecomes clear how th e

a n c i e n t I n d o - Ti be t a n t ra d i t i o n m e e t s t h e t e c h n o l o g y o f We s t e rn n e u ro s c i e n c e , br in gi n g t o l i g h t t h e a m a z i n g re s u l t s w e c a n a c h i e v e i f w e i m p ro v e o u r m e n t a l w e l l be i n g t h ro u g h p ro p e r m e n t a l t ra i n i n g . C u rre n t l y, o v e r 1 0 % o f t h e g l o ba l p o p ul a t i o n s u ffe rs fro m m e n t a l h e a l t h i s s u e s w h i c h m a i n l y o c c u r d u e t o a n i n e ffe ct i v e m a n a g e m e n t o f d e s t ru c t i v e e m ot i o n s . M e n t a l t ra i n i n g t e c h n i q u e s c o u l d a n d s h o u l d t h e re fo re be u s e d t o e n a bl e us to master any negative emotions that m a y c o n s e q u e n t l y fu e l h a t e , j e a l o u s y a n d attachment. U p p e r S t o ry a d d re s s e s t h e s e t h e m e s a t a h i s t o ri c a l t i m e i n w h i c h h u m a n be i n g s n e e d a g u i d e i n o rd e r t o l i v e a be t t e r a n d m o re fu l fi l l i n g e m o t i o n a l l i fe a n d , a s a c o n s e q u e n c e , g e t t h e c h a n c e t o p o s i t i v el y impact the planet.

DOCUMENTARY - 95 MIN MAKARAMPA.COM/UPPER_STORY.HTML

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INDIE CINEMA Magazine | 2020 | Issue 1

ARMENIA(S) TIME FOR ARTISTS DIRECTED BY ANAHIT DASSEUX TER MESROPIAN AND DAVID VITAL-DURAND. PRODUCED BY RAPPI PRODUCTION AND FRAMART

“ T he pri m ary i d entity of A r me ni ans i s n ot tr agedy. They a re a pe o ple who laugh, who d a n c e , who lo ok like ever yone else , ”unde rli nes in this docume n tary the actor and direct o r Si m o n Abk ar ian, who won 3 Mo li è re s last June, the most p re sti g i o us awar d in Fr ance f or t he ate r.

ca u t i o u s . N o , t h e Arm e n i a n p e o p l e a re n o t “ l i k e e v e ryon e e l s e ” . T h e y a re a people endowed with an in c re d i bl e v i t a l a n d c reat i v e e n e rg y, w i t h a s u rp ri s i n g l y re s i l i e n t c u l t u re , as t h i s be a u t i fu l d o c u m e nta ry re m i n d s u s o p p o rtu n e l y a n d i m p l i c i t l y.

T hi s i s use ful, b ecause it is i mpo rtant no t to reduce A r menia t o the sc o urg e s that this countr y h a s suffe re d i n its histor y. O n t he se c o nd part of the assert i o n, ho we v e r, we will b e more

Th ro u g h a s e ri e s o f t e sti m o n i a l s fro m a rt i s t s f ro m t h e d i a s p o ra (t h e f il m m a k e rs At o m E g o y a n an d Ro be rt Gu é d i g u i a n , th e m u s i c i a n s C l a u d e

Tc h a m i t c h i a n a n d Da n Gh a ri bi a n ...) , w e d isc o v e r w i t h a c e rt a in f a s cin a t i o n w h a t i s a t pl a y in t h e p h e n o m e n o n of t r a n sm i s s i o n w i t h i n t h es e f a mi l i e s o f c re a t o rs . H ow ca n a c u l t u re re s u rfa ce w h en i t h a s a l w a y s be e n s il en t ? Wh a t i s t h e d i ffe re n ce be t w e e n t h e re a l cou n t r y a n d t h e d re a m e d cou n t r y ? B e t w e e n t ra d i t i o n a n d fo l k l o re ? Oft e n , t h e s cen es t a k e a v e ry m o v i n g t u r n , e s p e c i a l l y w h e n pa ren t s d i s c o v e r h o w t h e i r ch ild re n , w h o h a v e be com e a rt i s t s t h e m s e l v e s , e x p re s s t h e i r o w n con n ect i o n t o t h e i r o ri g i n s . Th e i m a g e s o f l o s t Armen ia a re a l s o v e ry p o e t i c . An d be yo n d t h i n k in g a b ou t i d e n t i t y a n d o ri g i n s , t h is q u e s t i o n s i m p l y a r is es : w h a t i s i t t o be a n a r t is t o n a d a i l y ba s i s ?

DOCUMENTARY - 52 MIN.


Profile for Diana Ringo

Indie Cinema Magazine - Issue 1  

The 1st print issue of Indie Cinema Magazine - dedicated to film and media.

Indie Cinema Magazine - Issue 1  

The 1st print issue of Indie Cinema Magazine - dedicated to film and media.

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