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The House

Šarūnas Bartas
A Casa
France, Lithuania, Portugal 1997 / 120’

The worlds that Šarūnas Bartas creates in his films are complicated emotional universes, projections of the internal state of his characters. They are places where cultural symbols mingle with archetypes, memories, real and imagined events, intuitions, dreams, premonitions, and faces. These ideas are expressed in their most extreme form in The House, which involves a journey through the rooms of a real building and, at the same time, through time and memory, through the subconscious of a young man, the “lyrical subject” of this cinematic poem. In Bartas’s work, emotion is the starting point for everything. In this case, the story’s entry point is a grief-filled letter that the young man sends to his mother. It is read aloud by the narrator and illustrated by the façade of a noble palace in which the action takes place. It is difficult for me to say where in the world my true home is, what it looks like, says the director. I’ve always wanted to know how many people live in it, who they are. That is a difficult task because people disappear, they move. Sometimes, they leave the house behind, sometimes we are sitting at the same table, but we are never together.

Agnieszka Szeffel

Šarūnas Bartas

Born in 1964 in Šiauliai, Lithuania, Šarūnas Bartas is a director, screenwriter, producer, actor, and composer. He studied Direction at the Moscow Film School. In 1989, he founded Lithuanian’s first independent film studio, Kinema, which became the focal point for the young Lithuanian cinema that was emerging at the time and developing in terms of its creativity. He made his full-length debut in 1999 with Three Days, which captured the Ecumenical Jury and FIPRESCI awards at the Berlin International Film Festival. He has been collaborating with producer Paulo Branco for many years.


1986 Tofolaria (short, co-dir. Valdas Navasaitis)

1990 Pamięć minionych dni / Praejusios dienos atminimui / In Memory of The Day Passed By (short)

1991 Trzy dni / Trys dienos / Three Days

1995 Korytarz / Koridorius / The Corridor

1996 Niewielu nas / Mūsų nedaug / Few of Us

1997 Dom / A Casa / The House

2000 Wolność / Laisve / Freedom

2004 Wizje Europy / Visions of Europe (segment Children Lose Nothing)

2005 Siedmiu niewidzialnych ludzi / Septyni nematomi zmones / Seven Invisible Men

2010 Euroazjata / Eurazijos Aborigenas / Eastern Drift

Cast & Crew

director Šarūnas Bartas
screenplay Katerina Golubeva, Šarūnas Bartas
cinematography Rimvydas Leipus, Šarūnas Bartas
editing Mingilié Murmulaitiné
cast Valeria Bruni Tedeschi, Leos Carax, Micaela Cardoso, Alex Descas, Leonardas Zelčius, Francisco Nascimento
producer Paulo Branco
production Gémini Films, Madragoa Filmes, Studio Kinema
sales Studio Kinema
language French
colouration colour