For the fourth time the Lost Lost Lost section takes you on a journey to the fringes of cinema, following alternative paths, formal searches and unusual micro-tales. These are films produced in previous years by those with enough courage to jump the tracks of dominant mainstream trends in cinema and reality. These filmmakers boldly turn the camera toward what others often easily overlook and search the periphery, geographically and aesthetically.
curators: Agnieszka Szeffel, Mariusz Wojas, Mariusz Mikliński
As programmers, we are unable to say whether cinema can offer a universal recipe for the new uncertainty that currently afflicts us, but films in the Lost Lost Lost section certainly pose important questions in these times - about memory, identity, alienation. They constitute an attempt to establish relationships through a cinematic gesture - not only with another person, but also with the past or space.
In her video-diaries, Kaori Oda, a Japanese director who graduated from Béla Tarr's Film Factory, talks about entanglement in the past. In the intimate diptych, Aragane and Toward a Common Tenderness, she returns in thoughts and images to a conflict with her mother, who has not come to terms with her sexual orientation. Meanwhile, the director attempts to forge a new relationship with the alien reality of Eastern Europe, where the camera allows her to overcome the language barrier and start a conversation with local miners. Oda’s subtle, personal essays hew close to Chantal Akerman's cinematic approach, treating film as a link between the burdensome past and the unprocessed, rough present (a link that is not always satisfying).
Persisting in the past and the memory of rituals is also the theme of the visually phenomenal, mysterious Decline by Théo Court (his latest film, White on White, is also in the festival program). A silent man looks after a dilapidated property, the fate of which is already sealed, much like that of its inhabitants. In shots submersed in fog and twilight, the protagonist repeats his learned, past gestures, trying to arrest the passage of time (great cinematography here by Mauro Herce, director of Dead Slow Ahead from the first edition of Lost Lost Lost). The past, according to the Chilean director, is not a safe haven.
Meanwhile, the characters in From Tomorrow on, I Will, directed by Ivan Markovic and Wu Linfeng, have no time for the past - or the future. The two men sleep on the same mattress in a dingy cubicle on the outskirts of Beijing, a city of concrete and glass that deafens with its roar of constant construction work. Although they share a bed, they are complete strangers; they work on different shifts, have divergent views on life, and different plans for the future. In the alienating embrace of a modern metropolis, there will be no "mattress love story" from Tsai Ming-liang movies. The directing duo show the effects of alienating people in their most intimate spaces by contrasting the tiny apartment with the city's labyrinthine layout.
The past is also about scenes from previously-seen movies that sometimes suddenly show up in our heads. In an old Sarajevo movie theater, where viewers can immerse themselves in How I Fell in Love with Eva Ras by André Gil Mata (Tree, Lost Lost Lost 2019), the bygone times are represented by the eponymous, forgotten Yugoslav actress. Mata, yet another Film Factory graduate, focuses on the caretaker of a temple of films from bygone eras, the owner of a cinema, who lovingly cares for a film projector in the back room. Is anybody watching in this movie theater? When was the last screening? The questions that arise while watching Mata's film become even more bitterly poignant in current times.
The full program of the Lost Lost Lost section will be announced on October 20.