DocsBarcelona 2014/ 2

Colombian director Juan Pablo Rios was the first of three filmmakers coming for the rough cut sessions of DocsBarcelona 2014. The concept of the sessions is very simple: the filmmaker turns up with his work at a rough cut stage, a lot is still to be done but the rough cut stage allows him/her to receive comments and constructive criticism from a small, hand-picked panel of people, who are used to watch rough cut and give competent feedback.

The title of the director’s rough cut was ”The Return”, 90 minutes long, pitched at DocsBarcelona 2013, where I wrote the following words:

”Colombian Juan Pablo Rios showed his cinematic talent with a teaser that accompanied his ambition to tell a story called ”The Return” about a family of 9 sisters, their suffering and need to leave the town, they lived in, when the father took his own life. 45 years have passed, they return…”

So, one year later, and after several cuts, Rios confirmed fully his talent with material that can turn into a great film, feature length, beautifully shot with wonderful characters, the sisters, including his mother, one of several charismatic characters, who – a quote from the film – ”are united in sadness”. Yes, there is a lot of pain in this film that takes us to a small community where a suicide had severe consequences for a family’s life. But there is also a beautiful warm solidarity between the sisters, and anecdotes and life situations to be identified with.

A couple of more months editing work and a fine Colombian film will travel the world.

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Tue Steen Müller
Tue Steen Müller

Müller, Tue Steen
Documentary Consultant and Critic, DENMARK

Worked with documentary films for more than 20 years at the Danish Film Board, as press officer, festival representative and film consultant/commissioner. Co-founder of Balticum Film and TV Festival, Filmkontakt Nord, Documentary of the EU and EDN (European Documentary Network).
Awards: 2004 the Danish Roos Prize for his contribution to the Danish and European documentary culture. 2006 an award for promoting Portuguese documentaries. 2014 he received the EDN Award “for an outstanding contribution to the development of the European documentary culture”. 2016 The Cross of the Knight of the Order for Merits to Lithuania. 2019 a Big Stamp at the 15th edition of ZagrebDox. 2021 receipt of the highest state decoration, Order of the Three Stars, Fourth Class, for the significant contribution to the development and promotion of Latvian documentary cinema outside Latvia. In 2022 he received an honorary award at DocsBarcelona’s 25th edition having served as organizer and programmer since the start of the festival.
From 1996 until 2005 he was the first director of EDN (European Documentary Network). From 2006 a freelance consultant and teacher in workshops like Ex Oriente, DocsBarcelona, Archidoc, Documentary Campus, Storydoc, Baltic Sea Forum, Black Sea DocStories, Caucadoc, CinéDOC Tbilisi, Docudays Kiev, Dealing With the Past Sarajevo FF as well as programme consultant for the festivals Magnificent7 in Belgrade, DOCSBarcelona, Verzio Budapest, Message2Man in St. Petersburg and DOKLeipzig. Teaches at the Zelig Documentary School in Bolzano Italy.

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