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Insein Rhythm

Documentary Film
11 minutes

Credits DOK Leipzig Logo

Lindsey Merrison
Soe Moe Aung
Han Lin Thwin
Kyaw Myo Lwin
Nu Nu Hlaing
Time spent waiting is not empty. What happens at the old station of Insein, Myanmar, just before the arrival of the train might be called a haphazard collection of random moments. But you can also see it as a system of interlocking gestures and sounds. The film suggests the second interpretation by its rhythmic montage of these fleeting moments. A hand counts money, paper tickets are bundled, a station guard gets his orders at an old-fashioned orange plastic telephone. Among the waiting crowd, an umbrella is unfolded, a man sips from a cup and looks around. Outside on the tracks railway workers are mending the obviously crumbling line. Soon the individual pieces begin to repeat themselves, the sounds, including the spoken dialogue, blend increasingly fast to announce the train. One thing begins to refer to the next. What the images leave out deliberately: Insein Prison is nearby, notorious for the military junta’s methods of torture. Anyone who knows this will add it automatically in their head.

Lars Meyer