A red-clothed altar appears on the streets of Grana­da. Slowly, the feet of the people beneath it emerge; a group of women that seems like its own organ­ism. In the neigh­bour­ing houses, young men pre­pare to dance and cel­e­brate their tra­di­tion­al dance, the Fla­men­co. We follow the move­able altar’s path, as it gar­ners pro­found atten­tion from the onlook­ers and sym­bol­izes people’s mourn­ing.  

DUENDE takes us to the immer­sive moments of one of the most spec­tac­u­lar and intense ritual cel­e­bra­tions in Grana­da, Spain: Easter Week. A rhyth­mic, sen­so­ry film about an unusu­al parade that con­nects life and death and a com­mu­ni­ty whose faith touch­es deeply.   


Toly­at­ti is the Russ­ian Detroit. Toly­at­ti used to be con­sid­ered the center of the Soviet auto­mo­tive indus­try, with full employ­ment for all and modest pros­per­i­ty. But today, the almost-metrop­o­lis lags behind the former glory of AwtoWAS, the Volga Auto­mo­bile Plant, and is the city with the high­est youth unem­ploy­ment in Russia. Slava, Misha and Lera keep their heads above water with bad jobs. Misha has done an intern­ship in West­ern Europe and would also have the prospect of a good job in Russia - but not in Toly­at­ti. Lera is also think­ing of leav­ing her home­town. Final­ly, Slava audi­tions a lot, but hardly finds work. More­over, he is to be draft­ed into the army. But he is too short of money to pay the bribe for exemp­tion from mil­i­tary ser­vice. So the young people look for anoth­er daring pas­time. With tuned old Ladas - what else? - in winter, they drive across the frozen Volga River, which is par­tic­u­lar­ly wide in Toly­at­ti. Youth­ful daring defies ice and police checks, and an escapist verve beats real­i­ty for a moment. (Kira Tasz­man) 

Laura Sis­teró, born in Barcelona in 1986. In 2012 she obtained a bachelor’s degree in film at the ESCAC school in Barcelona, spe­cial­iz­ing in doc­u­men­tary direc­tion. She cur­rent­ly com­bines her work as a pho­tog­ra­ph­er, adver­tis­ing and tele­vi­sion direc­tor, with more per­son­al fic­tion and doc­u­men­tary film projects. TOLYATTI ADRIFT is her first fea­ture-length doc­u­men­tary and gained a.o. an award at Krakow Film Fes­ti­val as Best Film on Social Issues. 


After lead­ing a stu­dent life in Pon­fer­ra­da, the 24-year-old Edil­ber­to Rodríguez decides to return to the moun­tains and ded­i­cate him­self to herd­ing a herd of goats. With the memory of his grand­par­ents very present, “the last of Arga­neo” tells the story of a young shep­herd proud of the her­itage of his ances­tors, and who claims the tra­di­tions of unin­hab­it­ed places and the mem­o­ries of a way of life on the brink of extinc­tion. 

David Vázquez has worked as a sound and camera tech­ni­cian at TV sta­tions. In 1998 he co-found­ed Chan­ta­da Comu­ni­cación, one of the first local TV in Gali­cia. Films a.o. AS ALMAS DO FENTAL (2009); ASOLAGOS (2013); NAROTE (2019). 

Direc­tor, edit­ing: David Vázquez
Cin­e­matog­ra­phy: Hum­ber­to Novoa, David Vázquez

Violence is to charge 600 Euros - Public Land II

Head­lines about the con­se­quences of the eco­nom­ic and social crises and the cur­rent lack of sol­i­dar­i­ty seem to have lost their sell­ing. They grab little atten­tion in the public dis­course. The second part of Elena Friedrich’s Public Land series looks at the power dynam­ics of the public realm, which are locat­ed between infor­ma­tion and manip­u­la­tion, con­trol and rep­re­sen­ta­tion. The self-reflec­tive doc­u­men­tary blends audio-record­ings of dis­cus­sions from Athens and Madrid with a fic­tion­al nar­ra­tive of a man trans­port­ing boxes of oranges to the sea­side, always with the ques­tion in mind of how, in the “soci­ety of the spec­ta­cle,” alter­na­tive nar­ra­tives can be cre­at­ed and kept alive.

Violence is to charge 600 Euros - Public Land I

Wake up! is the recur­rent tag on walls in Athens, Istan­bul and Madrid. As a sign, it traces the polit­i­cal strug­gles between 2011 and 2015. The film is an essay­is­tic col­lage that maps respons­es to the polit­i­cal events that led, among other things, to rent rising to 600 Euros in urban spaces. Protest tags in cap­i­tal let­ters on major mon­u­ments are com­pared and con­trast­ed in regard to form and con­tent. The mon­tage of images of the urban space filled with let­ters and signs sprayed on build­ings blends with the narrator’s voice to create a reflec­tion on and an appeal for public land. Which kind of public sphere, what kind of images, lan­guage, and nar­ra­tions do we use and inhab­it to change the world around us?

The City of the Dead

In the vast El Arafa ceme­tery in Cairo, a city has arisen among the tombs and mau­soleums. This “city of the dead” has a living pop­u­la­tion of one mil­lion. There are many funer­als each day, while life goes on all around: a young shep­herd drives his cattle through the small streets, a market woman tries to sell plas­tic laun­dry bas­kets, and chil­dren play among the tomb­stones, flying their kites. No respect for the dead, then. There is, how­ev­er, an all per­va­sive sense of real­ism: in this necrop­o­lis, the living and the dead are bound togeth­er into a pact of peace. Direct­ed by Sérgio Tré­faut, THE CITY OF THE DEAD presents us with var­i­ous aspects of this strange enclave. We see the serene and beau­ti­ful sand coloured graves as well as the tur­moil of a place where a pre­dom­i­nant­ly poor pop­u­la­tion strug­gles to survive. 


Am I pretty?” When asked online, this banal ques­tion opens up a loop of found- footage videos uploaded by teenagers all over the world on the inter­net. Though the iden­ti­cal dra­matur­gy of dozens of these videos put togeth­er seems amus­ing at first sight, it inten­si­fies the impres­sion of a deeply alien­at­ed mode of self-expo­si­tion defined by the spe­cif­ic aes­thet­ics of tuto­ri­als, online diaries and con­fes­sion­al videos. While repet­i­tive in genre codes, this mash-up is no longer the rep­re­sen­ta­tion of indi­vid­ual sto­ries, but gives a con­densed pic­ture of cur­rent prac­tices of self-expo­si­tion, juve­nile inse­cu­ri­ty and the need for per­ma­nent recog­ni­tion in the Web 2.0.


Fatime­tu is born to a Sahrawi family in a Saha­ran refugee camp in Alge­ria and later sent to live with foster par­ents in Spain. After the death of her mother she returns to the camp. She has been absent for six­teen years. Her broth­er now expects her to stay and look after her sister Hayat, who has dif­fi­cul-ty walk­ing. Fatime­tu, who unlike the other women can drive a car, finds work trans­port­ing ani­mals, meat and bread from one admin­is­tra­tive dis­trict to anoth­er. In time, the Sahrawi people become ac-cus­tomed to the woman who tears about the desert with­out a hijab in her beaten up jeep. But Fatime­tu is torn between life in the desert and her mem­o­ries of her family and friends in Spain. The Sahrawi are a Moor­ish ethnic group in Alge­ria that is still wait­ing for the ref­er­en­dum that will define their status un-der inter­na­tion­al law. Told in con­cen­trat­ed, poetic images, Pedro Pérez Rosado’s staged film does not only give us the story of two reunit­ed sis­ters or the clash of two dif­fer­ent cul­tures; he also allows his Saha­ran pro­tag­o­nists to describe in their own words their polit­i­cal and social predicament.