info-FICC

Informative plattform of International Federation of Film Societies- Féderation Internationalle des Ciné-clubs- Federación Internacional de Cine Clubes

Jury Reports

Report of the Jury of the FICC Quijote Award 2022: 43rd Havana International Festival of New Latin American Cinema

Havana from 1 to 10 December 2022

Jury Members:
Emma Fernández (Spain) – president
Ramón Leonardo Cabrera Figueredo (Cuba)
Orlando Oliva Odoardo (Cuba)
Coordinador: Yony Yanez (Cuba)

The Latin American Film Festival of Havana, after two years of pandemic and with a reduced version in 2021, is back in its 2023 edition with more enthusiasm than ever. With more than 180 films programmed and divided into different categories, the Festival has covered the whole spectrum of current Latin American cinema.

The international juries were divided into categories. From the category of fiction feature films or debut films to documentaries and animation or unpublished scripts and posters… Up to 9 different juries. Each of the juries was assigned a single section and in the case of the Quixote jury, this year still a collateral prize, the winning film could be selected from any of the competition sections. This caused us a certain vertigo in the face of the large number of films to be screened and forced us to choose between some of the categories. After evaluating the different proposals, we chose two of the competition sections: fiction feature films and debut films. We made this decision because it would have been very difficult to evaluate by watching just one or two films from each section. We preferred to see at least one complete category and a large part of another in order to focus on certain aspects.

In total we saw 16 feature films, 6 short films and 3 documentaries out of competition over the 7 days of official screenings. We began on the opening day with Santiago Mitre’s Argentina, 1985, which set the bar very high as it was an impeccably made film.  The rest of the days we tried to watch between two and three films each day. It was sometimes difficult to fit the Festival’s lunch and dinner schedules in with the screenings, but we managed to work out a schedule that allowed us to see all the films we had planned without major setbacks, although we couldn’t avoid some last minute rushing to get to the cinema. This year there were only 4 cinemas as venues for the Festival and that meant fewer options for repeat screenings.  The cinemas were: Chaplin (home of the ICAIC), Yara, 23 and 12, all three in Vedado and the Acapulco in Nuevo Vedado.

In the fiction feature film section we were able to see El suplente by Diego Lerman, El gran movimiento by Kiro Russo, a Bolivian film that was the big winner of the Coral Awards, Regra 34 by Júlia Murat, So Much Tenderness by Lina Rodríguez, Los reyes del mundo by Laura Mora, Domingo y niebla by Ariel Escalante, Bajo un sol poderoso by Kike Álvarez, El Mundo de Nelsito by Fernando Pérez , El otro Tom by Rodrigo Pla and Laura Santullo, La caja by Lorenzo Vargas and Carajita by Silvina Schnicer and Ulises Porra. And in the section of opera primas we saw Sublime by Mariano Biasin, Carvao by Carolina Markowicz, Fogaréu by Flávia Neves and Tengo sueños eléctricos by Valentina Maurel. I have to say that we were disappointed not to be able to see more debut films because they all left a very good impression on us.

Many of the films in both sections had already been screened at International Festivals, especially in Europe, and had left a strong impression.

This year they have not published the physical catalogue of the Festival. I attach the PDF.

During our conversations about the films we were watching, in our first judgements as we left the cinema either in the car on the way to lunch or in our dinner conversations, we came to the conclusion that current Latin American cinema has generally chosen, with all due caution, to generalise, the adolescent world to tell its stories, and with a similar way of filming in many cases: films with very raw personal stories, with very close-up shots, sometimes off-centre, of detail, combined with very wide general shots, generally taken with a drone or at great distances to make clear the loneliness and helplessness of the characters and a nature that surpasses them.  Perhaps for this reason, the official jury chose Kiro Russo’s El gran movimiento, going out of the norm.

Our jury never had this film on its shortlist. We didn’t like it, nor did the audience. I would like to say that the screening that we attended was quite poor: a lot of noise in the hall, doors were opened too early. The final scene, which was very important, could not be seen, the sound was very bad, etc.  With this I just want to propose (and so I said) that the juries should be allowed to sit further forward in the cinema (now they are located in the last row) where they cannot hear the coming and going of the people, the chats in the hall, etc… It is one of the few drawbacks I put to the Festival. Not taking more care of the screenings in this sense.

As for our deliberation, we met in the garden of the Hotel Nacional the day before the presentation of the Collateral prizes to decide calmly. We did the preliminary work of each of us choosing 4 or 5 films to narrow down the discussion. Curiously, the three of us chose the same films, although in different order: Argentina, 1985, Los reyes del mundo, La caja, El mundo de Nelsito and El suplente.  And, after a long debate and after each one of us justified our choice, we decided that the film chosen for the Quixote 2022 Award was the Colombian film Los reyes del mundo by Laura Mora. Our justification, as we put it in the Act, was: “for being the film that in our opinion comes closest to the film club spirit, both formally and in terms of its content. For having a great script that delves into Latin American social and cultural issues with an impeccable formal approach based on a rhythm adjusted to the needs of the story and a photography that influences and defines the characters at all times. For dealing with a burning issue in Colombia, such as the expropriation of land and the difficulty of recovering it. For dealing with the subject of adolescence without condescension. And, finally, for its praise of friendship, so necessary in our times”.

In our Act we also demanded and highlighted the importance of the Quixote Prize returning to being an official prize at the Festival as it was in the past. It should regain its status and be recognised as an international jury. We wanted to make it clear that we give a voice to millions of film clubbers around the world. We give a voice to the organised and educated public and that has to be reflected in the Festival. We made all this clear in the interviews we were given for the Festival News, where we talked about the Quixote Award and the work of the International Federation of Film Societies. According to what we were told, this year the Quixote Award should have been official but there were some last minute problems in the process. In fact, we shared lunches, dinners and other distinctions with the official juries on an equal footing. Hopefully next year we will be present at the final awards ceremony.

The collateral awards ceremony took place on 9 December in the Sala Taganana of the Hotel Nacional de Cuba. The director of Los reyes del mundo, Laura Mora, was able to collect the award. She arrived a few minutes late but was able to dedicate some nice words of recognition and showed her gratitude and emotion to know that the award had been given by the film societies members.

I would like to point out that in these days we have also shared many things with the jury of the Mégano Prize, made up of Cuban film societies members, who also awarded a collateral prize. I was able to meet, among other people, the longest-serving film societies members in Cuba: Anolan García Correa and Juan Seguí Morales, the latter with family ties to Nen del Sucre, an important figure of anarchism in Catalonia, and who, curiously enough, Filmoteca de Catalunya is located in the Salvador Seguí square dedicated to him.

Apart from watching films, we have had time to share and exchange ideas and experiences with people linked to the Cuban film societies. I have been able to learn many things from all of them. I was very struck by an aspect that I didn’t know about, which is the difference between artistic film societies  and appreciation film societies. The former, predominant on the island, are based on film creation by children and teenagers. They are doing very good work in the east of Cuba and the second, the appreciation ones, are entities closer to what we understand as a film society where the screenings and the cineforum are the centre of the activity.

Finally, I would like to thank Luciano Castillo, director of the Cinemateca de Cuba, for his unconditional support.  He was the one who insisted that we claim the Quijote prize as an official prize. I am also deeply grateful to Yony Yanez who acted as coordinator, always attentive and efficiently solving any unforeseen eventuality.  He substituted this year for Lázaro Alderete who was out of Cuba during the days of the Festival and we can corroborate, Lázaro, the great work he has done in your absence. Thanks also to Lázaro Alderete for all the work he did before the Festival, thanks to the Festival Organisers too,  and, of course, to my dear colleagues on the jury, Ramón L. Cabrera and Orlando Oliva, who made me feel at home from the first minute and with whom I shared our love for cinema, bits of life, delicious after-dinners on the paladar La esperanza, many laughs and beautiful moments and a special memory for the drivers who drove us from one place to another every day and “put up” with our crazy film conversations. And to that beautiful country that is Cuba, my best wishes.

Emma Fernández –

President of the Catalan Federation of Film Societies and member of Cineclub Barcelona Espai de Cinema

L’Alternativa Film Festival 2022: Jury report Don Quixote Jury

Report by Francisco Javier Fernández Pérez of the Martorell Devil’s Cineclub from his career as an international cinematographer at the Festival L’Alternativa.

The 29th edition of the Barcelona Independent Film Festival, L’Alternativa, was held from November 18 to December 4 2022, taking as its main venues the Theater, the Auditorium and the CCCB Hall, but also with screenings in other venues such as the Filmoteca de Catalunya and the cinema Zumzeig.

In this year’s edition, the juries of the FICC Quixote Prize have been:

– Tiziana Spadaro, from Italy, director of the Versi di Luce International Film and Poetry Festival and currently vice president of the Italian Federation of Cinematographic Societies.

– Martha Otte, from Norway, former director of the Troms’ International Film Festival

– And myself, Francisco Fernández, representing the Catalan Federation of Cineclubs, member of the Martorell Devil’s Cineclub.

The three juries watched all the films of the International Feature Films in competition. In addition, thanks to the excellent assistance of the organisation, we have been able to enjoy another large number of parallel activities such as the classes given by Andrés Duque and Albert Serra, the workshops and professional debates or the out-of-contest screenings.

Before we give way to the viewings, both mine and my two jury partners would like to thank you for the treatment you have received throughout the festival. The great magnitude of this edition would be unintelligible without the people involved in our everyday lives. On L’Artenativa team: Tess Renaudo, Cristina Riera, Marc Vaíllo, Pere Sastre, Patricia Sánchez, Alex Gil, Sesi Bergeret, Andrea Bravo, etc. To the volunteer corps, the Terracccita personnel, the security team, Ivan Guarnizo, Margot Mecca and Tony Junyent, among many others. I apologise, in advance, to the people with whom I have shared a table, a word about cinema or a cigar and are not present in the mentions. Thank you for the heat and attention.

Throughout this edition we have rediscovered the potential of the archive in building a collective memory beyond the official channels, see Poletje ’91 of Žiga Virc, on the history(s) that hides Slovenian independence in the late 20th century. Similarly, in Another Spring, Mladen Kovacevic will use the slowing-down in his images and the distortion of his sounds to lead to post-COVID contemporaneity in the terrifying story of the last outbreak of smallpox in Yugoslavia. We see, driven by the East winds, as the reality, in this past case, (1) remains a very powerful machine to generate new fictions about the past.

Another of the keystones of the festival was the ecological question, especially the way in which man faces his waste. In Geographies of Solitude, Jacquely Mills combines political action (from waste) with film practice. With the only company of naturalist Zoe Lucas, the Canadian filmmaker departs for the same purpose as her fellow researcher, years ago: cataloguing all creatures and ways of life on the island of Sabre. Printing celluloid film different materials extracted from the island territory (marine vegetation, stellar light, plastic products), Mills gains an omniscient view of this small parcel of the universe, leaving the viewer with impossible pictures. The microscopic look of Geographies of Solitude is in conflict with the great trip Nikolaus Geyrhalter is taking to landfill sites around the world in Matter Out of Place. The great panorama that opens up the film gives way to the general plan that reveals the garbage that populates the landscape, just as, on certain occasions, one takes a hand from the close-up to bring to the fore the horror that escapes the overall perception of the mosaic. Geyrhalter’s device is part of the presentation of unusual situations, inexhaustible in the internal movement of his shots, as is the case with the truck floating over the snow, or the group’s gag of volunteers combing up the desert in search of waste. We see again, as through reality, present, (2) the surreal images pop up to synthesize all the intuitions of the documentary.

One of the great surprises of the festival was Une vie comme une autre, the family miracle built over seven years by Faustine Cros. Home cinema escape star, which seeks to exorcise the empty look of a mother and search for an alternative space to that proposed by the filming father. Wandering through a delicate loose rope in which she is rammed by both maternal and paternal forces, the filmmaker, however, avoids falling into the network of sentences. Finally, and out of competition, I would like to acknowledge the work of Santiago Fillol and his team in Matadero, a film of eras, a hollow eddy filtering through which they filter the pulsions and energies of the 1970s.

Thus, the jury of the Don Quixote Prize of the 29th edition of L’Alternativa, meeting on 24 November 2022, unanimously agreed to award the Don Quixote Prize for International Feature Film in:

Geographies of Solitude, by Jacquelyn Mills (Canada). Jury statements during award speech: “This encounter of an inquisitive and diligent filmmaker with a firm and determined environmentalist is a cinematic revelation capable of transforming the young and the not so young audience”.

In turn, the jury decided to grant a special mention to: Une vie comme une autre, by Faustine Cros (Belgium). Jury statements during award speech: “For his ability to lighten the weight of a powerful family drama”.

Report IFFS Jury, Don Quijote Award at TIFF 2022

https://www.tiff.no/en/news/prisvinnere-pa-tiff-2022?fbclid=IwAR1TLG4A6pxRhJpx_MskZE598RKF3lO6ah67WMiaW5A9AtYmO81hOzMOtng

By Mats Gangvik

January, 17th to 23rd 2022, Latitude: 69° 38′ 56.04″ N
Considered to be the northernmost city in the world with a population above 50,000, Tromsø held one important film festival every January, since 1991.

After one year without FICC Jury due to pandemic, the Festival invited again the International Federation of Film Societies to be present and award the Don Quijote to one of the films in the main programme.

The film festivals around the world faced, again, challenging times due to the pandemic situation. Although the mass vaccination in some regions, uncertainty was the most heard word in the last months, a true nightmare for programmers and organizations that have a special task that is promoting audience gatherings around films. Tromsø IFF was not an exception. Contention measures put in place by governments largely reduced the number of audiences and, in the extreme case of Rotterdam IFF lead to cancelations.

There was a shadow on top of any preparations but Lisa Hoe and her team believed in the possibility and complying with Norwegian Government rules brought on the northern lights of Cinema.

This year’s jury was composed by João Paulo Macedo (Portugal), Peter Stuart Robinson (Norway) and Holger Twele (Germany) and watched the main programme of the festival. A challenging selection of films, in Norwegian première, was presented to the different juries.

The Jury watched all the films from the Main programme, in the venues together with the audience. Despite the reduced capacity imposed by the local authorities, people attended the screenings in considerable numbers and shared the cinema experience with enthusiasm and joy.
The main competition included:

Bergman Island, Mia Hansen-Løve, France, Belgium, 2021
Brighton 4th, Levan Koguashvili, Georgia, Russia, Bulgaria, Monaco, 2021
Good Mother, Hafsia Herzi, France, 2021
Miracle, Bogdan George Apetri, Romania, Czech Republic, 2021
Mr Bachmann and his class, Maria Speth, Germany, 2021 (DOC)
One Second, Zhang Yimou, China, 2021
Parallel Mothers, Pedro Almodóvar, Spain, 2021
Red Rocket, Sean Baker, USA, 2021
The Souvenir: Part II, Joanna Hogg, UK, 2021
Zero Fucks Given, Emmanuel Marre, Julie Lecoustre, France, Belgium, 2021
MEDUSA, Anita Rocha da Silveira, Brazil 2021
The discussions around the films were part of the Jury daily routine which allowed deep analysis and became an interesting experience. At the end, it was easy to arrive to unanimous decisions regarding the Don Quijote Award to MIRACLE, Romania, Czech Republic 2021, by Director Bogdan George Apetri and a Special Mention to the documentary film MR. BACHMAN AND HIS CLASS, Germany 2021, by Maria Speth.

The jurys statement:
The FICC jury awards its Don Quixote prize to a film that plays with the audience’s expectations in an impressive, sometimes even oppressive way. What is really happening and what is merely in the minds of the viewers? Could it even be supernatural? This is a chambre-play-like road movie about guilt and revenge, in which the landscape and the social environment nevertheless play an important role, and a young woman becomes the victim of a still male-dominated society. The award goes to the film MIRACLE by Bogdan George Apetri.
The winner film: MIRACLE, Romania, Czech Republic 2021.
Director: Bogdan George Apetri

The FICC Special Mention goes to a timely film. These are days of doubts, fears and suspicions, especially of those who seem different to us. This is a film that gives courage and hope to us and the next generation. More specifically, it shows how, with the right social skills and historical awareness, it’s possible to overcome cultural and religious differences. Above all, there is a need for role models and educators who have the welfare of the children they protect at heart, as shown in the documentary MR BACHMANN AND HIS CLASS by Maria Speth.
Special mention goes to: MR. BACHMAN AND HIS CLASS, Germany 2021.
Director: Maria Speth

By Holer Twele

THE FESTIVAL PROFILE

Tromsø International Film Festival had its 32nd edition marked by the shadow of pandemic constraints which conditioned the organization up to the last minutes. Organizing the festival in these conditions was a race against the clock; however the setup was correctly done by the Festival Director Lisa Hoe and a great team festival team.
Taking a good profit for the venues and locations, the TIFF organizes some events that stand out as peculiar and great experiences. Specially appreciated the Verdensteatret Cinematheque – a beautiful 1916 cinema fully operated by TIFF and Tromso Film Society along the year – this cinema is the oldest one still in activity. Comfortable and well equipped brings the mix of a special place to celebrate Cinema. Other two cinemas Aurora kino Fokus,
KulturHuset, modern cultural venues were the stage for screenings and closing ceremony. The Festival also had screenings at Studentsamfunnet Driv (Driv Students House), that hold also the Seminar of NFK-filmklubber the Norwegian Federation of Film Societies and the 60th anniversary party of the Tromso Film Society.

The full Festival programme included other options:

  1. FOCUS NORWAY – offering a selection of national films world premieres
  2. HORIZONS – a wide selection of world films
  3. EAST SIDE STORIES – feature films and documentaries from Russia and the ex-Soviet republics.
  4. THE PRICE OF INEQUALITY – In 2015, TIFF featured a side program about inequality, and since then, this topic has only become more actual, which is why we have chosen to take up this thematic again 7 years later.
  5. RETROSPECTIVE: MIA HANSEN-LØVE
  6. FILMS FROM THE NORTH – Films from the North presents the best of new films made in Sápmi, Norway, Sweden, Finland, Russia, Canada and Iceland
  7. CRITICS’ WEEK – a selection of Norwegian Association of Film Critics
  8. OVERDRIVE – not the usual festival films
  9. SPECIAL SCREENINGS – This section offers a whole range of unique film experiences, like film concerts in the closed-down swimming pool Alfheim and screenings at our outdoor Winter Cinema on Stortorget.
  10. TIFF UNG – a program for youth aged 15-19 years selected by the Festival and students from TVIBIT and Breivang High school
  11. TIFF DIGITAL – For the 2nd time in TIFF’s history, a selection of films will be available to watch online.
  12. OFF SCREEN – arts, talks, critic’s seminar, performing arts and conferences.
  13. WINTER CINEMA – Stortorget, on ice open air cinema is the iconic, coolest and biggest venue for physical screenings at the festival on.
    In spite of the pandemic constraints the Festival team presented a full programme of activities. Always complying with the authorities, the main venues of the festival had most of the times the full capacity possible, with people showing its appreciation and interest in the proposals. Considering this, the Festival fully achieved the objective of allowing a safe experience to all participants. We remain with the expectation of a comeback for a full festival experience.

We believe that Tromsø International Film Festival is a rich experience to share with all colleagues with a strong recommendation to live if you have the chance.

Holer Twele, Peter Stuart Robinson, João Paulo Macedo.

By Åsne Storli

Jury report Avanca Film Festival and MDOC – Portugal 2021

AVANCA FILM FESTIVAL 2021

It was my third time in Portugal and also third time on film festiwal in Portugal as a FICC jury member. As a matter of fact before I didnt know that in Avanca there is a film festival (international film festival) and I didnt know also that there is such a interesting and charming place call Avanca, I’m really sorry about that, but it is really hard to know all the festivals around the world and all the cities and towns :(.

To get to Avanca first I had to take a plain from Warsaw to Porto, and then train to Avanca, which took me around 47 minutes. I really enjoyed my taime in train, I could see from the window ocean, small stations, nature, orinary people doing their things. In Avanca I felt really good, in good mood probably because of hospitalisty which I got from the crew of the festival. Saying few words about weather, it was nice, sunny, but the wind, oh my god the wind was a little bit demanding…

Anyway I had oportunity to watch not only movies that I had to watch as a jury member but also
a lot of inetersting stuff from around a world, some of them were brilliant and amazing and some of them not so much, but still I enjoy them. Our Jury decided to give Don Kichot Award (which is FICC Award) to Caged Birds (2021) directed by Oliver Rihs. We give it because, as we wrote it in our explenation to the verdict: „(Caged birds) emphasise that there is not just one universal point of view, that each person has his own universe, mosaic of expectations and feelings. That love can be powerfull, complicated and dewastating at the same time”

I came back to Poland happy and sad at the same moment – happy that I could take part in this such an interesting event and meet so much interesting people, sad – because the festival is over. I hope that in the future there will be possiblity to once again be a member of the jury in Avanca :), till that moment I will keep my memories from 25th edition of avanca International Film Festival.

Assina Konrad D.

MDOC, Portugal 2021

As jury member at the Mdoc 2021

My first time in Portugal! In a beautiful landscape, on invitation as a jury member for the Don Quijote Award of the FICC. A super-friendly festival team welcomed me warmly and made everything most pleasant. To meet my colleagues, also from the Jean-Loup Passek award and all the stunning filmmakers was just exciting.

The small town of Melgaco in the mountains close to the Spanish border hosts an international festival that promotes the art of documentary making with an exquisite competition for two awards every year. Moreover, I learned that this festival is just one part of various interdisciplinary activities around an annual theme to get explored by anthropologists and media artists. These programs provide great educational and career opportunities for young researchers and creatives, their final works getting presented with the festival. This year it was all about the village Castro Laboreiro in the nearby national park, which I could visit myself with an excursion. The area’s history is characterized by transhumance and migration, the festival corresponds with its focus theme „Identity – Memory – Border“ and in fact was the selection of films focussing on these issues on an amazingly high international level.

The award ceremony was crowned by the presence of the country’s popular president. In his speech he emphasized on his full support for culture and the arts. It was lovely to see a politician so close to his people – he even shared dinner in the school canteen and took a selfie with the cooks.

My days in Melgaco went by filled with the nicest conversations and inspiring experiences. I deeply hope and wish to be back some other year. I am taking home a loadful of amazing films, the telling photographies of Joao Gigante, many nice memories and a few old Portuguese bowls…

Dagmar Kamlah

August 14, 2021

 

 

Chronique sur le 27 Festival International de Films de Fribourg. Mars 2013.

Un rapport sur un festival du film laisse ce genre de choses, si elles apparaissent, pour la fin. Mais il n’est pas une mauvaise idée de dire ici qu’on s’en souvient d’une réunion de ce type, souvent sans tenir compte de la bonté ou de l’absence de la bonté des films vus, par les rencontres qu’elle facilite. La taille relativement petite du Festival de Fribourg offre une liaison familiale avec les cinéastes que le visitent, et ça c’est l’un de ses plus grands actives. Avoir le plaisir de parler en longueur avec Julia Murat sur ses exceptionnelles « Histórias que só existem quando lembradas”, avec Carlos Sorin, Haifa Al-Mansour, Pelin Esmer, Braden King, Oksana Mirzogan, Im Sang-soo et Alejandro Fadel, comme pourrait avoir été fait avec Wang Bing si  la barrière insurmontable de la langue ne l’avait pas évité, est quelque chose d’extraordinaire, qu’on oublie pas.

Mais avec qui s’obtient la relation maximale est, surement, avec les membres des autres jurés, et surtout, bien sûr, avec ceux du propre jury. Dans ce cas, ceux de la FICC, Nathalie Gregoletto et André Viane. Je dois dire que, outre l’inoubliable liaison humaine avec eux, j’ai été fortement choqué et ému par sa relation avec le cinéma. Nathalie collabore avec l’historique ciné-club de l’Université de Genève, où ils travaillent sur la base des cycles, avec une programmation et des publications de beaucoup d’intérêt. Elle révèle aussi une rigueur exceptionnelle dans l’analyse des films, que m’a laissé sans voix plus d’une fois. Pour sa part, André, polyglotte (il parle flamande -et, à partir de là, il fait  des incursions dans l’allemand-, portugais, espagnol, français et anglais), il fait suite à un projet de vie enviable. Dirige le centre culturel le plus important de la ville de Tavira, au sud du Portugal, son ciné-club, et, pas satisfait  d’avoir un programme hebdomadaire formidable, il a déjà fait douze éditions d’une Semaine du Film Européen (récemment complété avec la Semaine du Film Non-Européen), que des nombreux festivals voudraient pour eux-mêmes.

Avec ces deux personnes s’a donné le fait inhabituel que les délibérations du prix Quijote de la FICC et d’une mention spéciale ait pris le temps record d’un minute, en face de toute une matinée prévu pour cela, pendant le petit déjeuner à l’hôtel où nous nous logions. Je dois dire aussi que notre compénétration antérieure était presque complète, car seulement deux films en compétition n’ont pas suscité en nous une réponse –pour approuver ou dénigrer- uniforme.

Les deux films que nous avons convenu de faire noter par dessus les autres si rapidement et avec cette unanimité, ont été «Three sisters» (Wang Bing, Chine, 2012), à le quel nous avons proclamé Prix Quijote du Festival de Fribourg en 2013, et « Watchtower » (Pelin Esmer, Turquie, 2012), à le quel nous avons donné une mention spéciale.

Si ce n’était que, du a que je ne suive pas ces choses, je pourrai entrer dans des erreurs très gros, j’oserai dire que ici au Festival, à la Compétition Officiel, il a eu un match entre un champion de la Champion’s Ligue -Wang Bing avec ses «Three sisters»- et les équipes de la ligue local. Et non parce que le niveau moyen de cette ligue était de petite taille. «Three sisters», il est évident, joue à un autre niveau. Peut-être en réponse a ça, le film a également reçu le Prix international du jury et aussi le prix de deux autres jurés additionnels…

Ses presque trois heures de film montrent le suivi exhaustif du travail/jeux de trois filles – de 10, 6 et 4 ans- dans une communauté de les montagnes de l’intérieur de la Chine. Si José Luis Guerin a dépensé deux ans en vivant sur place pour capturer tout ce qui plus tard est apparu dans son “En construcción”, Wang Bing, comme il a expliqué à Fribourg, n’a été tournant dans la région que deux fois (4 à 6 jours), et son équipe pour encore une dizaine de jours additionnels pour, avec son matériel,  constituer les vingt dernières minutes du film ..

Problèmes linguistiques ont fait qu’il ne pouvait pas avoir avec Wang Bing, présent dans le Festival, la communication complémentaire pour clarifier autant que son film mérite. J’ai partagé avec lui le petit déjeuner d’hôtel le dernier jour, et j’ai épuisé toutes mes capacités gestuelles pour assurer une communication pas beaucoup au-delà de quelques sourires … (Bon : j’ai compris qu’il était en train d’aller à Pékin pour écrire le scénario de son prochain film, mais je ne pourrais assurer pas si c’était comme ça). Il y a des gents que n’aiment pas un documentaire comme celui-ci, qui, apparemment, présente toutes les choses en donnant l’impression d’avoir abandonné tout concept de mise en scène, mais il ne faut pas se laisser emporter par les apparences. Comme a déclaré Braden King, donnant à Wang Bing le «Regard d’Or» pour son film, c’est la simplicité dans le cinéma la chose la plus insaisissable… Dans la discussion après le film –dans ce cas avec une traductrice du mandarin-, Bing Wang a répondu avec une innocence apparente à des questions sur la façon dont il a laissé son empreinte comme auteur des prises de vue, dans un film où tout semble être une simple monstration des conditions de vie d’unes personnes. Les filles montent l’haut de la montagne pour rechercher des animaux, par exemple, et sur la bande son on entende la forte respiration du cameraman, puisqu’il ne peut pas retenir leur souffle. C’est une capture de son circonstancielle, mais il est également vrai qu’elle accentue la présence d’un metteur en scène derrière la caméra. Eh bien, il a juste dit qu’il n’y avait qu’une seule piste sonore et qu’ils n’avaient pas les moyens techniques pour éliminer la respiration. Mais, comment m’ont fait observer, il a laissé plus de preuves de la présence du metteur en scène, encore plus subtils que celle-là: Sur un plan à l’intérieur de la très simple maison où ils vivent (sans fenêtre ni cheminée), la table préparé pour le lunch, on y voie  un plat qui ne peut pas être pour d’autre que pour le metteur en scène, a qui ils ont ouvert toutes les portes pour observer et tourner la continuité de la vie de ces personnes.

La fille de douze ans, infatigable, se déplaçant d’un endroit à un autre, travaillant et faisant travailler a leurs petites sœurs, malgré le constipé qu’elle traîne tout au long du film, juste fait tomber amoureux d’elle. S’il y avait un prix pour les personnes qui apparaissent dans les films documentaires de cette nature, il devrait aller par toujours à ce village intérieur de la Chine …

quijote fribourg2

Déterminé le Don Quijote, aucune discussion non plus pour accorder donner une mention spécial à “Watchtower” (Pelin Esmer, Turquie, 2012), que raconte une histoire, depuis du même titre, en termes cinématographiques. Pelin Esmer fait partie d’une nouvelle génération de cinéastes turcs que, suivant ce que nous avons vu et ce qu’elle même nous a dit, devrait tenir ouverte la porte à la distribution de ses films dans le monde entier. Pour pouvoir montrer ses films (dans un pays ou, encore que le cinéma turque est encore le plus regardé, l’exhibition est monopolisé par les grandes multinationales, que ne montrent dans ses salles que un nombre limité de films), ils ont pris la gestion de plusieurs anciens théâtres historiques, leur évitant d’être démolis, et ils présentent, autant ils n’aient pas de la distribution, ses propres réalisations. Elle écoutait s’émerveillant quand je l’ai dit que, en Catalogne, des ciné-clubs ont fait de même, et constituent désormais la seule façon de voir des films dans de nombreuses villes. “Qu’est-ce que ce serait beau que quelqu’un s’en charge de faire le même en Turquie!” Dit-elle.

Son film à concours parle de deux personnes, poussées par des circonstances dramatiques, vivant chacun dans un isolement extrême. Nathalie, toujours attentive, m’ha fait noter que les deux se communiquent -très peu- avec les autres par l’intermédiaire d’un dispositif: Lui, garde forestier, habitant de la tour d’observation qui donne le titre au film, se communique par radio. Il voit la réalité depuis son extraordinaire tour/maison, au-dessus des montagnes, à travers leurs jumelles. A son tour, elle, hôtesse d’une ligne de bus qui circule à travers les montagnes, parle par un micro et sa voix arrive à ses passagers à travers les haut-parleurs. Si la Fédération internationale de Ciné-clubs atteint –comme plus ou moins confusément dit le texte du prix- la distribution des différents prix Quijote, elle pourrait faire le même avec toutes les mentions spéciales qui n’ont pas de la distribution commerciale. Ce film le mérite …

En dehors de ces deux films moi, personnellement, je trouve nécessaire souligner la valeur d’autres films aussi a concours, comme :

“It’s a dream” (Mahmed Ghaffari, Iran 2012), que, s’il n’y avait pas comme base un dispositif dramatique, à mon avis, peu vraisemblable, pourrait être ajouté à la déjà longue liste des films iraniens qu’expliquent très bien la croisée des chemins ou se trouve maintenant la ville de Téhéran, et avec elle, toute la société iranienne, et peut-être occidental.

“Penance” (Kiyoshi Kurosawa, Japon, 2012) a été montrée à une séance marathonienne que, malgré cela, a été passionnante, montrant jusqu’à ou il peut être addictive une série télé, parce que «Penance» consiste, en fait, en les quatre chapitres, avec un prologue et un épilogue, que a fait pour la télévision, avec tous les moyens du monde, un réalisateur, K. Kurosawa, qui est habituellement un exemple de directeur indépendant. Commence magistralement, comme le premier chapitre de “Twin Peaks”, avec un fait sanglante que marquera par vie la mère de la victime et ses quatre amies. Avec deux chapitres remarquables, jouant avec le public d’une façon très habile, le film a pour nous, d’ailleurs, l’avantage d’un portrait très évocateur de la vie dans le Japon rural et leurs subtiles différences sociales actuelles, tout en montrant que Kurosawa a digéré très bien l’héritage du grand film noir et fantastique, à commencer par le Lang de “M, le vampire de Düsseldorf». Le jury de la FIPRESCI, se démarquant étonnamment du reste des jurés, l’a décerné son prix.

Il était difficile concilier les fonctions de juré avec le fait de voir d’autres films dans d’autres sections du festival, qui est venu d’offrir plus d’une centaine … Quand même, j’ai pu voir ces joyaux:

“Yeguas y Cotorras” (Natalia Garagiola, Argentine, 2012) est un des films de la première session du concours de court métrages du Festival. Dans le film, trois amies se retrouvent dans une grande et élégante  maison avant le mariage de l’une d’entre elles. Des rires se produisent pendant la réunion, mais aussi de la violence et le sentiment de que hors de ce monde isolé il existe de la tension est transmise au spectateur. On reste admiré du niveau élevé de la nouvelle cinéaste argentine.

Dans le cycle des films des jurés, il y a eu l’occasion de voir à nouveau (il était le Prix Don Quichotte l’an dernier) celui que je ratifie que, pour moi, il est un des meilleurs films de les dernières temps, «Histórias que só existem quando lembradas » (Julia Murat, Brésil 2011). Non seulement il ne m’a pas déçue, sinon que dans cette seconde vision j’ai découvert au film beaucoup de choses que j’avais manqué la première vue. “Histórias …” raconte un fait –l’arrivée accidentelle d’une jeune photographe dans une population isolée d’une région du Brésil, où il fait de nombreuses années que rien ne se passe, même pas quelqu’un meurt-, a base de remarquer les différences subtiles apportées par cet fait à la monotone vie de la communauté. Il s’agit d’un véritable «tour de force» à l’égard de sa mise en scène. J’explique un de ces découvertes de la seconde vision, qui peut faire arriver à comprendre à quel point nous sommes en face d’un film extrêmement planifié dans les moindres détails: Julia Murat nous donne l’impression d’un lieu bloqué par la répétition. Elle montre les activités de quelques villageois deux jours avant l’arrivée de l’étrangère. Les visions sont répétées, mais le point de vue de la caméra change un peu. Donc, le premier jour nous apprécions qu’il y a un athée dans le groupe, parce que nous le voyons manger en arrière-plan, tandis que tout le monde est en train de bénir le déjeuner. Et bien, le deuxième jour, nous voyons le même rituel pour le repas, mais la caméra a bougé un peu, et cette personne est maintenant cachée. Mais ont sent le bruit de ses couverts quand nous voyons les prières du reste! La proximité que facilite le Festival m’a permis faire un long entretien avec Julia Murat, et je peux vous assurer que la planification était beaucoup plus millimétrée que ce que nous pouvons voir comme spectateurs. “Histórias …” est une belle allégorie sur la photographie et, par conséquent, sur le cinéma, qui est criant pour sortir dans nos salles…

J’ai des références que dans le cycle sur Ouzbékistan il y a eu films de grand intérêt, comme celui du membre du jury Kamalova Kamara (“Route sous le ciel, 2005 2005). Si je l’écris ici en dépit de ne pas l’avoir vu, c’est parce que je consigne que la recommandation est donnée par une personne que, une fois j’ai vu son film et après les conversations avec lui, il me mérite toute confiance. C’est Braden King, président du jury international, de qui on nous a montré son “Here” (USA, 2011), une road-movie à travers le territoire de l’Arménie, où les conflits et les peurs personnelles du couple protagoniste font l’écho avec le territoire de son parcours, toujours en tension par une guerre mal terminée. Il est un ingénieur cartographe, dont leur but est de placer sur une carte, avec leurs coordonnées, des photos satellite, et cette misse en place sur la carte des images est vraiment ce qui finit par être le film, ou, de temps en temps, Peter Coyote, avec sa voix grave, sur des images ad-hoc quoique un peu diffuses, il parle des explorateurs, des astronautes et des cartes … Un très beau film sorti de Sundance, dans lequel nous voyons que tout s’y est cassé: les photos, les cartes, l’ordinateur, la voiture, la famille, le pays, …

Une dernière référence à un programme vu … partiellement: Trois chapitres du mammouth (900 minutes) “The Story of Film: An Odyssey” (Mark Cousins, Royaume-Uni 2011). Une histoire du cinéma mondial, avec des enregistrements actuels franchement pleines d’images horribles, mais avec des interviews intéressantes et un trésor inestimable dans la forme de séquences de tous les temps.

En bref: Ça c’est ce que j’ai obtenu à partir de ce que j’ai pu voir. Je l’ai dit au début du texte. J’ai de bons souvenirs d’un festival qui a commencé avec des films qui ne me plaisaient pas trop … pour puis remonter. Mais non seulement des films vive le festivalier. En tant que membres du jury de la FICC nous avons été très bien traités. Lilo et Jeanne, et toute l’organisation administrative, nous ont guidés et ont réussi à résoudre le plus petit problème. Et je laisse écrit ici, pour donner encore plus envie, une série d’activités à lesquelles nous avons été invités: La Fête Nantoise (responsables du Festival des Trois Continents, à Nantes, portent chaque année d’huîtres et de vin blanc…) ; le magnifique  lunch offert aux jurys ; la neige (rare) à la fin de Mars ; la fête a l’Spiral, une discothèque  au quartier médiéval de Fribourg (une ville très spécial : chaque centaine de mètres en bas par sa rue principale suppose un recul de cent ans en arrière. Elle conserve des vielles sonnettes pour portes avec beaux reliefs, des images, des vielles gruyes pour annoncer tavernes, un pont en bois, un téléphérique de plus de cent ans, etc); des visites touristiques dans la ville ; cocktail à l’Espace Tinguely ; sortie à Gruyères et une bonne fondue de fromage le haut du sommet du Moléson, plus de 2000m d’altitude.

Je sais que ce sera difficile à répéter. Mais ce qui est pour moi, je serais heureux d’être élu comme jury permanent du Festival …

J. M. Garcia Ferrer

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