Seven people reminisce about their loved ones. They speak Polish, Spanish, English-the only thing that connects them is their painful sense of loss. Wasting no time on unnecessary explanations, Wiktoria Szymańska's film essay explores the mystery of life after death. Both the living and the dead, gently led along by the director, meet somewhere between two worlds-constantly looking over their shoulder like in the myth of Orpheus and Eurydice. Separated by an invisible barrier, they exchange indistinct memories of shared walks on the beach, evening dances, the intimacy of family-indistinct, because our memories are deceptive. Perhaps if death turns out to be gentle, I will be able to return. And to breathe in the summer night once again, says one of the movie's protagonists, which needs no explanation. Watching 13 Summers Underwater, dedicated to long-lost loved ones, one thing becomes clear: Szymańska's work is primarily interested in poetry, not prose.
Born in Poland, Wiktoria Szymańska is a director, painter, and visual artist. She grew up in the United Kingdom, and she has lectured at film schools in London, Rio de Janeiro, and at the École du Louvre in Paris. She started collaborating with ARTE in 2004. Her documentary Themerson & Themerson was warmly received all over the world, and Marionetista was screened at the Festival in Karlovy Vary. Her short film 7 Sheep premiered at the Festival in Toronto.
2010 Themerson & Themerson
2015 7 Sheep (short)
2017 13 powrotów / 13 Summers Underwater