Ephemeral Moments Embalmed in Letters

August 7, 2019

While We Are Here (Enquanto Estamos Aqui, Clarissa Campolina and Luiz Pretti, 2019)

A love story told in its entirety through the city, without any kind of protagonist within the four walls of the frame. In the absence of an on-screen surrogate, alternating voice-over tracks reveal memories that are tied to the space that served as their backdrop. Authorial interjections and first-person epistolary communications guide us through New York, Belo Horizonte and Berlin.

Lamis (Mary Ghattas) is from Lebanon, and recently arrived in NYC. Wilson (Marcelo Souza e Silva) is from Brazil, and has been in the city that never sleeps for 10 years. The disembodied voices relay their impressions of the space and their courtship, over still and moving images. Macrocosm and microcosm are bound to one another at the molecular level, as the private and public become entangled. The fragments from this deeply personal tale discreetly expand into broader themes such as globalisation and migration.

Documentary and fiction bleed into each other, as the script emerges from Clarissa Campolina and Luiz Pretti’s personal archives. The result is a hybrid of film essay, diary, literary fiction and collage in the uncertain kingdom of desire, hope and fears.

Critics have been quick to draw parallels between this and Chantal Akerman’s News from Home (1977). I see Campolina and Pretti’s work as more akin to Jean-Luc Godard’s Two or Three Things I Know About Her (Deux ou Trois choses que je sais d’elle, 1967). Either way, it’s definitely an experimental outlier on the DokuFest program.


07 Aug, 22:00, Lumbardhi Outdoor
10 Aug, 18:00, Shtëpia e Kulturës

DokuPhoto 2019

July 22, 2019

DokuKids 2019

July 15, 2019