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24th Ji.hlava International Documentary Film Festival

ji-hlavadok-revuecdfEmerging producersInspiration Forum
Commodity City
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Commodity City

Commodity City

director: Jessica Kingdon
original title: Commodity City
country: United States, China
year: 2016
running time: 10 min.

synopsis

The Yiwu wholesale market in China is more than eight kilometres long. Short episodes follow buyers and the uncompromising negotiations between vendors. The observational documentary shows stalls so covered in goods they completely hide the vendors – and thus also the market’s other world, where their offspring spend their childhoods.

biography

American director and producer Jessica Kingdon (1986) makes narrative and experimental documentaries. She co-produced the feature-length film Old Stone (2016), which was shown at last year’s Berlinale.

more about film

director: Jessica Kingdon
producer: Kira Simon-Kennedy
photography: Jessica Kingdon

other films in the section

Beyond the World
At the funeral of her grandmother, Yanlin, a young Chinese girl, learns that the deceased was a medium – and was possessed by a spirit named Gong. The film is Yanlin’s personal confessional – she never believed in the existence of miracles, but is now becoming interested in the world of spiritualism and finding out who Gong was in order to understand her grandmother better.

Beyond the World

Yanlin Li
United Kingdom / 2018 / 16 min.
section: Short Joy
World Premiere
Ma
This film is the video diary of a Ukrainian mother from Mariupol, a city close to the turbulent Donetsk Region. A series of several-minute long records of commonplace views from a window, following tracks in the snow, and strolls in the surroundings form a loving visual message for her daughter in Kyiv.

Ma

Maria Stoianova
Ukraine / 2017 / 17 min.
section: Short Joy
Central European Premiere
The Remembered Film
Reality disappears before our eyes – all that remains is what’s preserved in our memories, the retelling of which allows us to bring it back to life. Camera in hand, the experimental filmmaker explores this abstract process in a stylized documentary with young boys in military uniforms and stories of war.

The Remembered Film

Isabelle Tollenaere
Belgium / 2018 / 18 min.
section: Short Joy
Central European Premiere
On Guard
The film is a skit on the parallels between a caretaker and a security guard embodied by the character of a young man who keeps watching over everything all the time. Repetitive and automated everyday tasks are accentuated by monotonous aesthetics of the camera and a slow-moving pace, introducing the audience into the world of Korean pragmatic mentality and sense of responsibility. 
personal program

On Guard

Jeamin Cha
South Korea / 2018 / 18 min.
section: Short Joy
European Premiere
Mum, I'm Sorry
The only things they left behind were their personal belongings. They speak volumes about what kind of people they were. What they liked. Who was close to them. What hobbies they had. A film without words. Footage of objects belonging to people who drowned in the Mediterranean Sea off the coast of the island of Lampedusa in 2013 and 2015 - people whose lives were extinguished for good.

Mum, I'm Sorry

Martina Melilli
Italy / 2017 / 17 min.
section: Short Joy
International Premiere
Murmuration ×10
This compilation of archived footage of bird observations and the tracking of migration routes is supplemented not only with murmurations of birds, but also with a modern-day commentary that reevaluates the concept of freedom of movement. The film compares bird banding with passport checks and identifies problematic issues associated with free movement.

Murmuration ×10

Sarah Wood
United Kingdom / 2015 / 22 min.
section: Short Joy
European Premiere
The Hypothesis
The film’s creator, in the role of an earthling walking the streets of Paris, asks the eternal question: Are we alone in the universe? While attempting to find the truth and therefore quiet the constant musings, the filmmaker holds interviews with astrophysicist Nicolas Prantzos, science historian Florence Raulin Cerceau, and sociologist Pierre Lagrange.

The Hypothesis

Bruno Saboia
France / 2018 / 20 min.
section: Short Joy
World Premiere
I Was Here
Director Zaina Erhaim has decided to explore her Syrian hometown of Idlib, which is controlled by anti-regime forces. Original footage captures familiar neighborhoods in ruins, where Erhaim leaves what is perhaps the last human footprint. This secretly-filmed documentary presents a visual experience of the loss of home and of meeting loved ones in a new reality.

I Was Here

Zaina Erhaim
Syria / 2017 / 11 min.
section: Short Joy
European Premiere
Mud road
A three-hundred-kilometer unmaintained dirt road is the only way to reach the nearest hospital from a remote African village. Through naturalistic observational camerawork, the film captures the journey of an ambulance driver in southern Ethiopia struggling to overcome all possible obstacles in order to safely deliver a laboring woman to the doctors.
personal program

Mud road

Francesco De Giorgi
Ethiopia, Italy / 2019 / 10 min.
section: Short Joy
World Premiere
Shendy Wu: a Diary
A personal documentary about writing two diaries and finding a lost childhood friend who once moved with her parents back to her native China. Static shots of the streets of a Chinese metropolis and its surrounding natural beauty alternate with retrospective scenes from the Argentine homeland, suggestively drawing the viewer into the girl's loneliness in an unfamiliar environment.
personal program

Shendy Wu: a Diary

Ingrid Pokropek
Argentina / 2019 / 17 min.
section: Short Joy
European Premiere
Girls and Honey
An open conflict plays out in the Kosacks’ backyard between the pro-Russian separatists and Ukrainian soldiers. This short documentary follows the life of the couple, who have refused to leave their home, and their new neighbors on the front line. Only Anatoly’s bees can fly freely from one side to the other.

Girls and Honey

Pieter Jan De Pue
Belgium, Ukraine / 2017 / 8 min.
section: Short Joy
East European Premiere
I Have Sinned a Rapturous Sin
An essay filmed against the backdrop of lyrical images of feather plucking or drawing with chalk presents the clerical orders of Islamic women and how they rein in their impure desires. As a subversive element of Islamic fundamentalism, the director recites a poem by Iranian feminist writer Forough Farrokhzad.

I Have Sinned a Rapturous Sin

Maryam Tafakory
Iran, United Kingdom / 2018 / 8 min.
section: Short Joy
Czech Premiere
Ministerstvo kultury
Fond kinematografie
Evropská unie
Město Jihlava
Kraj Vysočina
Česká televize
Český rozhlas
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