IDFA: Lozinski, le Maire, Delane, Cordes

They are quite different in themes and styles, the films that I am going to write about in this post. What they have in common is that the directors mentioned in the headline all have films shown at IDFA, Amsterdam – and that I have seen them, and like them, more or less, for various reasons.

Pawel Lozinski is an internationally known Polish director, whose film ”You Have No Idea How Much I Love You” (PHOTO) I reviewed in connection with its premiere at the Krakow Festival. With top marks, here is a quote: ”As a viewer you know these

stories, in a way it is very banal – a child feeling guilt because of the parents divorcing, just one of the themes coming up, the reason it is so good stems from the filmmaking, the three are so good, they are so well directed, the editing goes smooth from one to the other, you listen while you watch either the one talking or the one listening. Like he proved in “Chemo”, Pawel Lozinski has this unique skill of going to the core taking away all the unnecessary and bringing to us a cinematic conversation piece of universal reach.” It will raise genre discussions at IDFA!

Jerome le Maire, equally, is known in festival circles for his fine ”Tea and Electricity”. Here, at IDFA 2016, he presents, in a convincing observational style, including the director asking questions and getting involved and engaged, a scary story from a hospital in Paris, where he has followed the surgical unit, that suffers from stress and lack of resources and simple communication, making the staff ”Burning Out”, the title of this very strong film, that has a content far too familiar for a Dane, who has been close to hospitals a couple of times during the last years.

Olga Delane, Russian living in Berlin, puts with her ”Siberian Love” the viewer in a much milder mood with her charming, sweet and well made documentary from South-East Siberia, where her family lives. The starting point for the film, made together with Frank Müller, is that Olga is single, why is it so, her family asks her, when she goes back home to visit, you have to get married, become a real woman, hav children… but the focus moves from Olga to convey stories about the three couples she meets and is related to, with Olga behind the camera you get to know, how their life is now and how it is with love? They live in the countryside, they are farmers, they have a hard daily life, but they manage and they have many interesting remarks to Olga, the city girl. Yes, we are in the Russian province and there are alchohol problems and sometimes strong male chauvinistic comments, and men who want to fight, but there are also strong women, with strong personalities, who are not afraid to express their opinions. It’s a film made with love, you feel that right away. The family likes Olga and she likes them, and OMG how beautiful the landscape is – summer or winter.

Sebastian Cordes, young Danish director, has his film placed in the new ”slow film category”, and it is slow his ”A Place Called Lloyd” but for someone who loves Roy Andersson and Jørgen Leth, you see where the inspiration comes from and enjoy this absurd visit to a place where the employed people still come every day even if their Lloyd flight company was declared bankrupt in 2008. Image by image, sequence by sequence, through beautiful shots, you get into this world of dedicated people, who have the hope that things will get back to normal and the airplanes will leave the ground again.

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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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