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Black Nights Film Festival – Young Tallinnts

Day 5

Meet The Filmmakers. By Christian Alt arrow.
"Mademoiselle C": Beautiful Inspiration. By Olga Konkova arrow.
An Insight To Contemporary German Cinema. By Maarja Hindoalla arrow.


Meet The Filmmakers
By Christian Alt

Yesterday the Black Nights Film Festival invited the press for a "meet the filmmakers hour" at the Café Wabadus. There, the journalists could meet renowned filmmakers like István Szabó (Mephisto), Uberto Pasolini (Still Life) or Navot Papushado (Big Bad Wolves) and chat with them in an informal environment. This was the second event at this year's film festival since it proofed to be a success last year.

"Estonian journalists are so lazy", says festival director Tiina Lokk asked why there is no press conference instead of yesterday's event. "We tried for years to make press conferences work, but there would be just a few journalists there." Maris Hellrand, the international media press officer, elaborates on this subject: "In a festival like this, where most journalists arrive just for a few days, there is never a time where you have 50 journalists present."

So the festival changed its policy and hosts smaller, more intimate events like yesterdays. Maris Hellrand introduced every director in a short Q&A session to the audience. Unfortunately director Navot Papushado and actor Brontis Jodorowsky had to leave right after the Q&A session for a screening, so there was no time to ask questions. Cult director Quentin Tarantino has called Papushado's Big Bad Wolves the best movie of the year.
At next year’s film festival this kind of press conference will hopefully be continued.


"Mademoiselle C": Beautiful Inspiration
By Olga Konkova

Mademoiselle C.Making a good documentary was never an easy task to do. Director is dependent on object he is documenting, he has to provide some exclusive facts and keep the interest of audience at the same time. Therefore, choice of an object is important in making a piece what people will be desirous to watch. French director Fabien Constant found exactly that kind of a person — Carine Roitfeld, well-known in the world of fashion as ex editor-in-chief of "Vogue Paris". If you are not a member of the world of fashion (as am I), after watching documentary Mademoiselle C you will feel that you want to be a part of that, at least to have a chance to meet the enchanting fashion icon CR.

What makes this documentary much more interesting than the others (for instance, the boring one is Vivienne Westwood: Do It Yourself! by Letmiya Sztalryd what was also screened during the festival — no offence) is that there is a plot in the sense of its' development. Director of Mademoiselle C Fabien Constant said, "I was looking for a story that could bring the audience from point A to point B", and he found it. The filmis telling about the main character in a process of launching a new risky project — fashion book “CR”. The audience is pushed to be excited about how successful will be an attempt to do something new in fashion by person who is under the pressure after leaving Vogue Paris. You can see what is done to achieve the aim, you can also see the problems Roitfeld faces while trying to do the best she can. The reason for the audience to become sympathetic to Carine Roitfeld is her sincerity and infinite respect for everyone she meets — she is never a star, she is always a human. The documentary opens this woman's life and leaves no doubt — this talented woman is worth documenting.

Beautiful people, stunning clothes and tasteful interiors are fine objects for shooting, but you have got to have a talent to capture the whole atmosphere. Mademoiselle's C style of shooting is not pretentious, but enjoyable. Trouville of the film are shots of main character's feet on high heels walking in different places — the shoes are always beautiful, Roitfeld's walking is always feminine and confident. These shots tell a lot about this woman and dynamism of her life.

It is hard to imagine the music what could fit the film better than the one what is in it. In Mademoiselle C sounds contemporary and classical music always suitable the scene.

Beautiful image for eyes, perfect music for ears, sincerity for soul – everything plunges the audience into the magic-alike atmosphere of this film. Could a documentary about fashion editor be inspiring, instilling optimism and faith in yourself? In the case of Mademoiselle C  — thousand times "YES". (Olga Konkova)


An Insight To Contemporary German Cinema
By Maarja Hindoalla

Zwei Muetter.New German Film is a strikingly honest and naturalistic program of contemporary German cinema at Tallinn Black Night Film Festival; consisting of 11 feature and 13 short films. The program focuses on personal and societal relationships and the films are rather ambivalent — those dramatic, not to say tragic, stories are told in a hopeful and warm, not depressing way.

The most astonishing might be Two Mothers (Zwei Mütter) by Anne Zohra Berrached, which is surprisingly honest and deeply intimate film about struggling with both bureaucratic and emotion-driven obstacles on the way of two women wanting to have a child together. The film has a strong confessional style and Berrached believably shows what happens behind closed doors; in other peoples' homes. Intimate and delicate scenes make you feel like you are standing right next to those people at their most personal moments but it doesn't make you feel uncomfortable or perverse for being able to peek into other peoples' lives, it rather creates compassion. The story is so detailed it can almost seem as a documentary or a chronicle.

Parents focuses on a serious topic as well — family crisis and struggling with balancing work and family life — but is nevertheless a heart-warming and hopeful film. The likeable characters make you live through the routine fatigue, angst, fear and despair of everyday life; yet in the end of the film the beautiful thought that come what may, there's no point in regretting, echoes in your head.

Finsterworld is a bittersweet and ironic story about the harsh collusion of hopes and reality. Five different but in some way connected stories, each of which carries a grim thought of how hard it is to comprehend another person right and fully, are tied together and create a strong entirety. Director Frauke Finsterwalder is a native German who lives in Kenya — thus being in some sense an outsider — gives an interesting insight to modern Germany. And the fact that Finsterwalder can be seen as an outsider, makes it that more intriguing. Between a calm surface lays anxious reality.

In Forget Me Not, David Sieveking, a young filmmaker returns to home to take care of his dementic mother, while his exhausted father goes for a vacation. Only then David starts to unwrap his parents' story and discovering what kind of person her mother really was. It's rather an affectionate portrait of a loved one than a classic documentary. You can feel something truly deep and personal behind the screen. The film contains almost dramaturgically humorous and heartrending moments and thus it seems as Sieveking too is blurring the line between fact and fiction.

It's fascinating how lifelike and organic each of those films is, but at the same time they are gripping and charming; never getting routine itself. New German dramas which seek for credibility and being authentic unimaginably differ from German well-known expressive and tough youth films such as The Edukators (Die fetten Jahre sind vorbei), Neukölln Unlimited and Engel & Joe.

In addition to the named ones, Sources of life, Nordstrand, Free Fall, West (Westen), Five Friends 2 (Fünf Freunde 2) and Nothing Bad Can Happen (Tore tanzt) triumph in the program. Last of which won Just Film youth jury's award for best film. (Maarja Hindoalla)




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Tallinn 2013

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