Film Archive

Jahr

It Takes a Family

Documentary Film
Denmark
2019
59 minutes
subtitles: 
English
German
Credits DOK Leipzig Logo
Ulrik Gutkin (Copenhagen Film Company Short & Doc.)
Susanne Kovács
Povl Kristian
Casper Høyberg, Susanne Kovács
Marion Tuor
Susanne Kovács
Claus Lynge
Susanne Kovács knows that her paternal grandparents survived the Holocaust and fled to Denmark to begin a new life. That’s all she knows. The Hungarian couple kept their own story under lock and key throughout their lives and focused on immersing themselves into Danish everyday life as quickly as possible. A picture book life, seen from outside. To escape the memory of death, they smiled and remained silent. If no one sees the darkness, they hoped, normality becomes possible. But the unsaid did not fade but grew and finally began to darken the present.

Even as a child, Susanne felt that indefinable mix of fear, pain and rage that was bubbling under the surface. Long before she was able to put these feelings into words, they were in the room. But when, as a young woman, she decides to ask questions, she meets only rejection. May she dig up times against her grandmother’s will that are haunted by so many ghosts? Isn’t it better to remain silent after all this time? Who is allowed to speak and with whom? Which version of the truth is right? A courageous investigation of her own family story that makes it clear that at some point it’s no longer about guild, but about forgiveness.

Luc-Carolin Ziemann

The annotations to the films in the Official Selection were written by the members of the selection committee and guest authors. All quotes from DOK Leipzig catalogue articles must be identified as such and cite the author’s name. Some original titles and names have been transcribed resp. transliterated. We apologise that we cannot cite individual image sources and rights in our festival publications or festival coverage. Please note that the visual material is published exclusively for the purposes of promoting specific films or festival programmes. No transmission to third parties is provided and would only take place with the explicit agreement of the owners of the rights. The rights to the images lie with the respective copyright owners.

Photographer of War

Documentary Film
Denmark
2019
78 minutes
subtitles: 
English
German
Credits DOK Leipzig Logo
Katrine A. Sahlstrøm
Boris Benjamin Bertram
Tobias Wilner Bertram
Tony Lauge Madsen, Adam Philp, Henrik Bohn Ipsen, Marcel Zyskind, Boris Bertram, Thøger Kappel
Charlotte Munch Bengtsen
Jan Grarup is a photographer with heart and soul. His pictures of war zones have made him famous. But even at home, in his house in Copenhagen, everything is dominated by the medium: “The lens has been in the American Civil War,” Grarup proudly announces when he welcomes the French star philosopher Bernard-Henri Lévy for a portrait session. The film by Boris Benjamin Bertram meets Grarup at a moment when everything changes: The woman with whom he has four children has been diagnosed with a brain tumour. Grarup, presumably an adventurer rather than a responsible father and partner before, must take care of things now. And when he goes to the frontline against the Islamic State in Iraq, he knows that he must come home safely because he owes it to his children.

Bertram’s film is both intimate and discreet. Jan Grarup opens up; he shows his tattooed body at the doctor or the hotel, he lets the filmmaker share, as much as possible, the daily life of a war photographer. Older, originally private recordings of past family life make the present-day scenes more urgent: Photography (and film) are truly revealed as a medium against death here.

Bert Rebhandl

The annotations to the films in the Official Selection were written by the members of the selection committee and guest authors. All quotes from DOK Leipzig catalogue articles must be identified as such and cite the author’s name. Some original titles and names have been transcribed resp. transliterated. We apologise that we cannot cite individual image sources and rights in our festival publications or festival coverage. Please note that the visual material is published exclusively for the purposes of promoting specific films or festival programmes. No transmission to third parties is provided and would only take place with the explicit agreement of the owners of the rights. The rights to the images lie with the respective copyright owners.