Emerging talent Arian Dalladaku sits down with DokuDaily to talk about his graduation film, Far (2019). The film introduces us to Rron, a young Albanian boy from Kosovo, who is confronted with the discrepancy between the rêve and the reality of illegally migrating to Germany.
DokuDaily: What was the starting point for this project?
Arian Dalladaku: It came from my interest on treating the idea of being a stranger in a big city. I was very intrigued by this idea, as I was experiencing it myself when I first moved to Berlin.
Your films title refers to distance, what kinds of distance did you have in mind when conceptualising the film? Far from home? Far from security? Far from community?
“Far” refers to a lot of things on the film that’s why I decided to call it that way. Since this film is character driven, I decided to connect the tittle with the character’s emotions. It refers to the things mentioned above as he is a “stranger” in this big space, so this makes him distant and far from everything. Especially from his comfort zone.
Nita Deda, our festival director, has mentioned that the legalities around travel that prevent Kosovar people from going abroad makes you feel like you’re in a ghetto. Is this a sentiment that you could relate to? And were trying to address this in your film?
I think a feeling of discrimination and anguish exists in everyone with a Kosovo passport, when this topic is brought up. The fact that there are a lot of obstacles to move freely in Europe makes one feel excluded and not the same with the others. This is a big discussion, especially amongst the youth, who portray Kosovo as the biggest “prison” in the middle of Europe in terms of freedom of movement. So, it is a point which I was trying to address in the film.
How would you explain the relationship between isolation and being abroad?
This is an element which the stories character goes through. He’s abroad but he’s still isolated because he has different expectations to the reality that awaits him. If I were to find a relationship between the two terms in a more rational way, I would say it all depends on the purpose of one being abroad. There are different cases of people being abroad with different reasons or motives. Talking from my experience though, I would say that when a person is not integrated while abroad it automatically creates a sense of isolation and exclusion from the others.
You’re currently in Germany, to what extent was this film autobiographical?
I think that every film is autobiographical to some extent, but at this point, more than the fact of me currently being in Germany it has to do with my observations and my experiences. I think it’s very sad that I cannot invite my old friends to visit me because they need to wait months and months for a visa. The practical reasons are the main ones for me doing this film.
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