The program of documentary essays of the 2010s combines personal histories with historico-political research and rare archival footage.
The five films of the program examine some of the key historical events of the recent past and the way they have affected particular lives. The filmmakers’ personal involvement and the voices of their friends and family offer an opportunity to see the general historical process through the lens of personal histories, bridging the lives of individuals and the development of societies. Repressed historical traumas spill into family and personal drama, while home videos acquire the weight of historical documents.
In her debut feature Adriana's Pact (2017), Lissette Orozco tells the story of her aunt who worked for Augusto Pinochet’s secret police. Accused of having taken part in torture and murders, in 2007 Adriana Rivas fled the country. The screening will be followed by a Q&A with the director over Skype.
Eric Baudelaire’s essay-film about the partially recognised state of Abkhazia, Letters to Max (2014) has made it to the programs of several international film festivals. The picture is based on correspondence between the Parisian artist and filmmaker and his old friend and the former Abkhazian minister of foreign affairs Maxim Gvinjia.
The Second Game (2014) by Corneliu Porumboiu is a recording of the filmmaker’s conversation with his father as the two seek a common language to discuss the country’s past and present over a football match between two Romanian clubs, filmed a year before the fall of Ceaușescu regime.
Vincent Dieutre’s experimental Jaurès (2012) is a poetic meditation on home, homelessness and the fragility of connections between humans. A love story, implicitly present throughout the film, is dramatically interwoven with stories of people living with no home, family, or confidence in their future.
Vitaly Mansky’s documentary Close Relations (2016) is dedicated to his relatives who live in different parts of Ukraine. While filming family members, separated by political collisions, the renowned Russian cinematographer reveals the depth of consequences of one of the most profound political events in Ukraine’s contemporary history.
On the program’s closing day, Garage Auditorium will be running a screening of the documentary Kiev/Moscow. Part I and a thematic round table discussion “Documentary Film: Between the Personal and the Political”involving documentary filmmakers and researchers in the fields of public history, film, and media.
The last film in the program, In the Intense Now is an attempt at painting a portrait of the entire generation of the 1960s: the decade that has seen political unrest spread across the world, from Czechoslovakia and France to China and Brazil. The story of hopes and disillusionment presented by acclaimed Brazilian filmmaker João Moreira Salles is based on the footage his mother had brought back from her visit to China during the Cultural Revolution.