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24th Ji.hlava International Documentary Film Festival

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In This Valley of Respite, My Last Breath...
In This Valley of Respite, My Last Breath...
In This Valley of Respite, My Last Breath...
In This Valley of Respite, My Last Breath...
In This Valley of Respite, My Last Breath...

In This Valley of Respite, My Last Breath...

director: SJ. Ramir
original title: In This Valley of Respite, My Last Breath...
country: Australia, New Zealand
year: 2017
running time: 5 min.

synopsis

Wandering on the edge of darkness, the camera records grainy objects and pulls hesitant signs of the searched-for refuge from the darkness. By carefully working with light, the filmmaker sketches a unique place bathed in silence and uncertainty, on the back of specific depictions of buildings and landscapes.

“The theme explored in my work is that of ‘journeys’ – both physical and metaphysical; alluding to isolation of the individual and isolation of place.” SJ. Ramir

biography

SJ. Ramir (1971) is a New Zealand photographer and filmmaker who has recently begun to work with the digital image. His works often show the perspective of a person in the middle of an empty landscape. By using custom camera filters to distort reality, he evokes a feeling of loneliness, which is an integral part of his work. The Ji.hlava IDFF previously screened his films Our Hands Are Empty (2014) and Cold Clay, Emptiness… (2010).

more about film

director: SJ. Ramir
producer: SJ. Ramir
photography: SJ. Ramir
editing: SJ. Ramir

other films in the section

Proof of Memory
Visual memories collected during the first year after the filmmaker’s graduation from university, altered using computer graphics to create disconnected particles of overlapping scenes showing various forms of depression from burnout, relationship crises, and a lack of physical and mental strength."Feelings that are impossible to be expressed by words can be shown through a camera or a computer." Y. Kawata

Proof of Memory

Yosuke Kawata
Japan / 2017 / 10 min.
section: Fascinations
Central European Premiere
The End of Time
Delving for a brief moment into an everyday scene, we see various movements at various speeds and experience microstories representing the familiarity of the street. The classical technique of analytical slowing down different parts of the image at different speeds is used to capture an otherwise invisible phenomenon. “Sometimes in a flash you become aware of the fact that time does not matter.” M. Manchevski

The End of Time

Milcho Manchevski
Cuba, United States / 2017 / 5 min.
section: Fascinations
Czech Premiere
Mayhem
Minor irregularities are transformed into an elemental disorder of growing, jumping, decaying and reappearing bubbles, only to become focused into a circle of changing colors. Using digital tools, the author depicts the simple process by which water boils and cools again. Japanese experimental filmmaker, producer, and computer artist Yoshiki Nishimura has shown several of his films at previous editions of the Jihlava IDFF. In Fascinating Moments (2014) he followed the choreography of snowflakes, An Observation (2013) is a composition of upside images of the sea, and Orbiting (2015) explored the changing light of the moon as it shines through a visually manipulated digital image.“By using different media, we have great possibilities of expanding our views of reality into various directions.”

Mayhem

Yoshiki Nishimura
Japan / 2016 / 10 min.
section: Fascinations
World Premiere
Portbou
An exploration of the place, plants, stones, and buildings in a village located in a rocky bay in northeastern Catalonia near the French border, where Walter Benjamin died and is buried. A tactile encounter with a place, made using a prototype haptic camera that records the objects its user touches from unexpected perspectives. Agata Mergler is a postgraduate student of the humanities at Canada’s University of York, where she is involved in developing apparatus that record what their users touch. Cristian Villavicencio Ruiz (1984) is from Ecuador and is studying at the University of the Basque Country in Leioa. His work explores the relationship between tangible and visible perception and how it changes during the digital transfer of stimuli using modern technologies.“In our collaborative work using DIY digital prototype ‘haptic cameras’ provides us with opportunity to question the hegemony of the visual and the role of touch in moving image production.”

Portbou

Agata Mergler, Cristian Villavicencio
Spain, Canada / 2016 / 4 min.
section: Fascinations
World Premiere
The Moons of Palaver
Images originally from the tests of spotlights are inserted into models where they evoke the phases of the Moon and in regular intervals combine to hint at a harmonic line of bright reflections. A fleeting arrangement of the traces of humans and machines forever trapped in the depths of the night.  "The Moons of Palaver had to be short, quiet, with soft light, gently mechanical, edited late in the night, a paradox and a mystery. It had to be a poem that I couldn’t possibly write." E. Gaucher  

The Moons of Palaver

Eric Gaucher
Canada / 2018 / 3 min.
section: Fascinations
European Premiere
The Shifting Sands
Philosophical reflections on Israel blend into a personal struggle for identity: The filmmaker’s father came to the British Mandate of Palestine in 1946 as a Jewish refugee. The call for harmonic co-existence is imprinted in the falling grains from one image into another. Some of the scenes come from the documentary film Israel: Land of Destiny (1977, dir. Jacques Madvo).  "By constructing the film entirely with an optical printer, moving images and pictures are drawn to rhythm and meaning. The philosophical words of Martin Buber invokes the reflection upon the reality." M. Piller  

The Shifting Sands

Madi Piller
Canada / 2018 / 9 min.
section: Fascinations
European Premiere
La Mesa
Genre conventions cleverly broken down with animations, breaking through the scenery of rural Mexico, where in the area surrounding the director’s family farm, symbols of stories of physical desire conceal a layer of idyllic childhood memories and come into conflict with the traditional concept of masculinity and identity expression.   "By centering queer desire within the story of my Mexican-American family, I validate my own lived experience as well as challenge popular representation of masculinity, power and vulnerability." A. G. Gomez  

La Mesa

Adrian Garcia Gomez
United States / 2018 / 10 min.
section: Fascinations
International Premiere
Non-Places: Beyond the Infinite
This essayist collage visually develops French anthropologist Marc Augé’s concept of nonplace (ephemeral places characterized by anonymity or blurred identity) and turns images of highways and rest stops upside down, thus emphasizing the difficult-to-grasp images of these worlds “Marc Augé’s essay (Non-Places: Introduction to an Anthropology of Supermodernity) meets with Stanley Kubrick’s 2001: A Space Odyssey in some Hungarian highway rest areas.”

Non-Places: Beyond the Infinite

Péter Lichter
Hungary / 2016 / 6 min.
section: Fascinations
European Premiere
Shapes of Facts
Ghostly hills and inhospitable landscapes created by physically deformed newspapers are a critical allegory of the inner workings of the contemporary media world in which, beside journalists who still hold in esteem reliable and verified information, the voice of those crooking facts and creating parallel and alternative “realities” intensify by the day. “A fact is supposed to be specific and verifiable. The fact you are willing to accept makes your reality of this world. Watch out! There are many different versions of each fact.” Y. Nishimura
personal program

Shapes of Facts

Yoshiki Nishimura
Japan / 2019 / 10 min.
section: Fascinations
World Premiere
African Film School
Found 8mm home movies from safaris in South Africa and Zimbabwe in the 1960s – i.e., during the apartheid era. The filmmaker finds inspiration in Peter Kubelka’s avant-garde work Unsere Afrikareise and uses montage and editing to critically refl ect on the colonial representation of the African landscape. “Having lived in South Africa for almost a decade, I wanted to find an abstract way to reflect on my journey as a filmmaker and highlight my concerns regarding the visual misrepresentations of Southern Africa.” R. Horn

African Film School

Roger Horn
South Africa / 2017 / 5 min.
section: Fascinations
International Premiere
Or / Or, Hawick, may 18
In the middle of the Teviot River in Scotland, the filmmaker saw a color in the sky like in the paintings of Gustav Klimt. He translates his amazement at this moment into fluid patterns of a digitally decomposed scene, all the way to its radical ending when the variously colored grids flowing on the screen like a calm horizon again dissolve into Klimt’s golden color. "Making films is opening my heart and letting the magical powers of life shine in my imagination to merge them in images. I try to thrill those who watch colour and time flow in my films." J. Perconte  

Or / Or, Hawick, may 18

Jacques Perconte
France / 2018 / 9 min.
section: Fascinations
World Premiere
Afterimage
A frozen frame of a ten-lane boulevard lined by skyscrapers comes to life with past (or future?) movements, cars, advertisements, and people whose distinct as well as subtly visible traces struggle with the image’s punctum for an urgent actuality and the non-linearity of time, which moves forwards and back. Korean director Yi Myun (1973) studied musical composition. He lives in Seoul, where he works as a composer and video artist. The Jihlava IDFF previously showed his short film Field (2014), which explored themes of urban ecology. His films often combine traditional music-based soundtracks with melancholy views of urban landscapes that seem to live their own lives independent of human beings.“적 is the Korean title of this film and the sound of the word has diverse meaning in Chinese characters. It means: target, enemy, be right, build, trace, silence, advance, achievement, tread, watch, expose, angry, meet and fear.”

Afterimage

Myun Yi
South Korea / 2016 / 3 min.
section: Fascinations
World Premiere
Ministerstvo kultury
Fond kinematografie
Evropská unie
Město Jihlava
Kraj Vysočina
Česká televize
Český rozhlas
Aktuálně.cz
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