Borderlining in the dream factory
To the Left? To the Right? Straight forward? With the imposition of the house arrest against Kirill Srebrennikov, another internationally known director was arrested after the Crimean- Ukrainian – Oleg Sentsov was convicted to 20 years in jail. In Beirut, a military tribunal detained Ziad Doueiri after his return from the Venice Film Festival. Why filmmakers are threatened today? Is there a reason why their films should not travel around the world? In the Ukraine, Russian films are not allowed to enter regular distribution in cinemas.
Why begin with those issues? The cases mentioned above are not directly connected with the program of this year’s “Cinedays”. Nevertheless, one has to point out that these filmmakers are not renowned for any explicitly political films, but by precise reflections of their societies. Perhaps this analytical understatement is more controversial than open political statements. An analytical understatement, which is the distinguishing feature of European cinema today. In the competition films of this year’s “Cinedays”, there are no speech bubbles and no superficial views in the forefront, but heroes and heroines, which are able to control their every-day-life struggles only after a few failed attempts.
The stranger in a small town in Scotland, of whom no one really knows where he comes from, but who starts feels home there up North, the destitute Palestinian in Nazareth, who, in order to find money to support his family, decides to make a fortune by selling “Holy Air”, the Copenhagen Parents, who overcome their empty-nest syndrome with a rather unconventional rejuvenation cure – people with dreams, which can quickly turn into nightmares.
Borderlining in the dream industry: the European cinema illustrates the dichotomy of real life without going into pathos. Instead, there is a lot of psychology and empathy. Plenty of questions look for their answers: is the traumatized Turkish secret police officer who confesses a political murder, a perpetrator or also a victim? Is there a way young generations can forget the wars of their parents? What if you go to a foreign country and realize that there is no dream job waiting for you?
As in reality, there are no clear answers in film. Not to puberty crises and not to homemade racism. Not to the threat saber rattling of authoritarian regimes and not to the disappointing silence in the province. The viewer is supposed to observe, to decide for himself and herself – while in the meantime a lot of fascinating landscapes and self-contradictory protagonists come to the screen. Characters who seem so familiar, as, in the end of the day, all of us are always forced to get along with ourselves.
This is what makes European cinema so fascinating today: those personal, emotional discourses between right and wrong, between left and right, and in the end somehow straight: doubtful, sympathetic heroes between their lives and future visions, between try and error.