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Wednesday December 6 – The latest competing screenings for Mediterranean Interlacements

Wednesday December 6 – The latest competing screenings for Mediterranean Interlacements

Wednesday 6 December is the penultimate day of the festival for this year. After the tribute to Anna Magnani in the company of Francesco Crispino, the evening starts with the last screenings dedicated to Intrecci Mediterranei, the competitive section dedicated to the films of the mare nostrum.

The first guest connected remotely is the director Sabina Vajrača who brings the film Sevap/Mitzvah, a story of the fears and uncertainties of the Jewish people in south-eastern Europe.

«My grandmother told me the stories of those who saved Jews during the Second World War. When I started writing the script all the media was talking about Muslims and how they helped civilians, it’s not my personal experience but I have a lot of Jewish friends and I started doing research. I wanted to tell a different approach and tell the union between the two families, I found a photo that inspired me and I started from there to tell this story. I chose the 4:3 format because it is the format of the burqa and I wanted the audience to see the world as the protagonist sees it. The title has an important meaning: “sevap” is a Turkish word meaning something you do for the good of society and not for personal gain. Mitzvah in Hebrew means the same thing and the meaning of the short film is precisely this. I think people are hungry for stories that show how we can be human and that reveal these kinds of emotions!”

Sabina Vajrača with Marta Bulgherini after the screening of the short film

The evening continues with the screening of Eschaton AD, the controversial and provocative short film by Andrea Gatopoulos, a denunciation of a dangerous future dominated by AI but also an invitation to reflect on how as human beings we should act to ensure that things change universal level.

«I don’t think there is a cure for this societal disease that is artificial intelligence. “Eschaton” is one of the terms with which the apocalypse can be indicated, “Ad” is advertising, it would be like the advertising of the apocalypse and the film is one of three in a trilogy that studies the relationship between man and cars. I believe that AI is an epochal evolution for archive cinema, it can falsify reality. I wanted the film to be provocative, like the advertisement that interrupts your favorite song, I used the same language that Scientology also uses, inspired by their speeches. AI is introducing a new genre with digitally generated images. Will we support this medium, or will there be an upheaval or a revolution? In my opinion, AI realizes the dream of capitalism, the replacement of the individual, a dream that has existed since its incipit. It must be accompanied by legislation before it takes over all economic processes and we must move universally. This is a profoundly political and social discourse. Now I’m also working on a book, the AI ​​hasn’t understood what mystery and poetry are and I believe that literature will survive it, so for this reason I’m moving towards this type of work!»

Andrea Gatopoulos with Marta Bulgherini

Abdallah Al-Khatib, director of Sokrania 59, guest with us in the room, comments on his film after the screening and tells us how he thought of making it thanks to the experience he lived directly with his mother in a refugee center.

«I started making this film as a documentary, not as a fiction, but then the Ukrainian family I was working with had to leave before the end. I wanted to tell this story because I would like to show that people can coexist despite their differences and that elements of concomitance are always present between various cultures. It wasn’t easy at all for me because it was my first fiction, I live in Germany but I come from Palestine and as a Palestinian I think we should make films precisely because we have to tell our story. The Palestinian people do not have the possibility of having the platforms (BBC, Netflix, etc.) like the people of Israel and therefore making cinema becomes an effective way to do so.»

Also present in Abdallah’s film is the famous actress Hiam Abbass, as he is a friend of her daughter he obtained this collaboration without her asking for compensation, she volunteered with pleasure and gave him a lot on a production level, from here an excellent relationship was born and now I am like a big family.

Frame from the short film Sokrania 59 by Abdallah Al-Khatib

The last guest of the evening is Guillermo Garcia Lopez, director of Aunque es de noche, connected remotely with Marta Bulgherini, he talks about how this difficult film about communities marginalized by society has presented him with many challenges and reflections.

«This question of the Mediterranean represents what I do, I am happy to be at the festival, a meeting of many cultures and many perspectives. I work with the moving image, for me cinema is not just a story. The initial idea was to make a documentary but in the end I chose fiction. I went to the place you see, in Spain, it’s a place where Romans, people live, the community has completely moved from the center and they haven’t had electricity for three years, the municipality has also cut off the electricity because it wants to send them away by force , they are very discriminated against and there is a very heavy drug market. Once I entered I understood that to be able to work there and make a good film it wouldn’t be the work of a director who comes and simply does his art, but you have to understand the community, I’m also an activist so I couldn’t ignore this fact . As Pasolini says, it is important that the film has the character’s perspective, it begins to make sense when everything becomes part of the character. For me, children’s gaze has the capacity for wonder, so you can see beauty even in a very dark place, which is why I chose them as protagonists. We played and created a specific brand where they had freedom and also built a lot of dialogue together. Art can be made even in a place where people don’t have access to it. The idea was to capture the image of a child asking for his childhood when it slips away.»

Guillermo Garcia Lopez

We are waiting for you today for the screening of  Tommaso Santambrogio‘s feature debut, The Oceans are the new Continents, to end the festival in style with our traditional concert, read the complete program here!

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