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March 28th – April 2nd, 2017 / Cinema Muzeul Țăranului & Cinema Elvire Popesco / the 7th edition

Golden Shorts - Best Films in Major Festivals

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Golden Shorts - Best Films in Major Festivals

Directed by: 
MANON COUBIA
Juliet's fate might have been crueller still, had she not been able to see dead Romeo with her own eyes. This what-if scenario is a plausible introduction to Manon Coubia’s cinematic impression of a forlorn life. A woman has spent most of her lifetime waiting for the eternal snows to melt and return the body of her husband, a mountain climber who had died in an accident during an ascent of the Mont Blanc. Under the gaze of the camera, creased bed sheets, complemented by the sound of wind, turn into mountains covered in snow. The wife lies on her bed perpetually, her dreams of the passing of seasons shown in accelerated time-lapse. With its temporal perambulation through times gone by and states of the soul, The Fullness of Time (Romance) is fundamentally a film about eternal love and about the endless power of cinema to get to the deepest core of human experience. (Ioana Florescu, BIEFF 2017)
Directed by: 
JUANJO GIMÉNEZ
Though the first shots might mislead us into expecting a realistic workplace drama or a stale thriller, Oscar nominee Timecode switches tonality early enough to avoid becoming either. Diego and Luna, who take shifts as security guards in a parking's surveillance room, find a way to evade their insipid tasks when Luna accidentally comes across security footage showing her night shift colleague Diego dancing in the empty parking lot. Inspired by the discovery, she leaves him in return a recording of her own dance. The surreptitious choreographic dialogue builds up to a moment of encounter, when their gracefully harmonized movements become a statement of freeing from boredom, alienation and constraints. Juanjo Giménez cleverly employs a surprising twist of perception by turning one-way directed prying surveillance cameras into instruments of communication and of liberation, implying that people can create spaces for the fulfilment of their spiritual needs in the most hostile of places. (Ioana Florescu, BIEFF 2017)
Directed by: 
MARCELO MARTINESSI
Dealing, like many of Marcelo Martinessi’s previous films, with the recent history of Paraguay, The Lost Voice is based on original interviews about the 2012 Curuguaty massacre which triggered political chaos and the removal of the acting president. The hand-held camera follows an old woman with a heavily creased face of awe-inspiring beauty through her daily chores. She is the mother of one of the victims. During her spoken recollections, the screen turns black as if showing respect, and the radio broadcast from the time of the massacre, a constant background sound throughout the film, cuts out. Shifting between speech and image and almost never allowing them to sync, the film evades the conventional interview format and functions much as memory itself, fragmentary and abounding in blind spots. The massacre itself is openly suggested only in one shaky shot of the frantic movements of panic-stricken chickens with gunshot sounds from the radio in the background. The rest is about the frightening calm after an - emotional and political - storm. (Ioana Florescu, BIEFF 2017)
Directed by: 
GABRIEL ABRANTES
Among the Yawalapiti tribe in the Amazon Basin, Claude Laroque and a young indigenous woman named Jo research ways in which to convey emotions to robots. Together they teach Coughmann, the robot, a guide for identifying a variety of human emotional states. Coughmann’s intelligence recognises the advantage of remaining polite when failing to understand something and to at least feign comprehension. And: the grasping of the fundamental nature of humour helps one understand another. Coughmann falls in love with Jo. The power of their love overcomes every reboot. In grand pictures, Gabriel Abrantes tells of this love. Life’s great questions cannot be discussed without humour, he quotes Ludwig Wittgenstein and in The Artificial Humors, merges thoughts on anthropology, the indigenous community’s way of life and the idiosyncrasies of artificial intelligence. (Berlinale Shorts presentation)
Directed by: 
GERHARD TREML & LEO CALICE
Metaphorically turning their backs on stereotypes of form and narrative and focusing their attention - and camera - on the ‘gloomier’ side of California, Gerhard Treml and Leo Calice distance themselves from more prudent ways of approaching this American territory in cinema. The three stories feature characters who have moved to the desert to escape the anxieties inflicted by an increasingly disturbing society. The schizophrenic shaman of native Indian background, the mother worried sick about the danger of her daughter's falling victim to pedophiles, and the woman who runs a wormfarm and claims to lead a self-sufficient life, are depicted in minimalist scenes shot in disconcerting static bird’s eye view while their stories are spoken in voice-overs of tranquil tone but troubling content. The authors have chosen a most improbable angle for the shooting and telling of profound human stories with a unique blend of intimacy and distance. (Ioana Florescu, BIEFF 2017)