Film Archive

International Programme 2013
Grasp the Nettle Dean Puckett

An activists’ camp on London’s Parliament Square, caught between political struggle, plodding grassroots democracy, dubious allies, and police violence. An insider’s perspective on “Occupy”.

Grasp the Nettle

Documentary Film
UK
2013
89 minutes
subtitles: 
English

Credits DOK Leipzig Logo

Daniel Erlacher
Dean Puckett
Leo Leigh, Lee Bruce, Duncan Sangster
Dean Puckett
Paco Sweetman
Dean Puckett, Can Aniker
Jeet Thakrar
It’s always easy to make fun of green or protest movements if your own laziness keeps you from taking action against wrongs. That’s how the filmmaker Dean Puckett feels, too: seen from outside his own inertness is only bearable from a certain ironic distance. So he gives up his life, flat, and job to really learn how these groups work.
In the aftermath of the 2008 financial crisis, a few people in London team up to do more than call for a different, more sustainable life in the streets. In peaceful collaboration with the local residents, they found a kind of ecological village on a piece of disused land in West London. It’s a utopia with homemade tents, vegetable plots, and evenings around the campfire. When they have to give way to the excavators that come to prepare the ground for new apartment blocks, this ragtag band of activists, dropouts tired of civilisation, homeless people, and lunatics moves to the city centre to raise their tents on Parliament Square. All of a sudden, they are faced not only with the challenge of getting their own chaos under control but also with the humourless authority of the state.
Puckett has made a nuanced portrait of social experiments in times of crises, when formerly safe structures erode and the need for more freedom erupts in urban spaces.

Lina Dinkla
International Programme 2013
Nae Pasaran Felipe Bustos Sierra

After the 1973 coup, Scottish workers refused to deliver engines for fighter planes to Chile. The reconstruction of a self-determined act of solidarity.

Nae Pasaran

Documentary Film
UK
2013
13 minutes
subtitles: 
English

Credits DOK Leipzig Logo

Rebecca Day
Felipe Bustos Sierra
Julian Schwanitz
Anne Milne
Frederic Plasman
Jack Coghill
What’s the connection between the military dictatorship in Chile and the workers of a Rolls Royce manufacturing plant in Scotland? Here are the known facts: when the workers learn after the 1973 coup in Chile that the machine parts they make are used in the Chilean junta’s fighter planes, they refuse to deliver them. According to later Chilean reports, however, the machines were deployed after all. The workers doubt it. What’s their secret? Director Felipe Bustos Sierra reconstructs the events like a thriller, focusing on three former Scottish workers who meet again at a pre-arranged place. He confronts them with the known facts and uses animated sequences to interpret what happened on the grounds of the factory under cover of night and fog. Combined with archive material from the 1970s, a tongue-in-cheek portrait of a self-determined act of solidarity among workers emerges.

Lars Meyer
International Programme 2013
The Valley of the Jato Caterina Monzani, Sergio Vega Borrego

A polluted river, a broken transmitter mast, the fight against the Mafia – Pino, chain-smoking patron of a Sicilian local radio station, takes care of everything. A turbulent plea for independent journalism.

The Valley of the Jato

Documentary Film
Italy,
UK
2012
67 minutes
subtitles: 
English

Credits DOK Leipzig Logo

Caterina Monzani, Sergio Vega Borrego
Caterina Monzani, Sergio Vega Borrego
Roger Goula
Sergio Vega Borrego
Sergio Vega Borrego
Zhe Wu
You have to do everything yourself as a local journalist and patron: talk to the people in the factories and on the streets, research names, write commentaries, hop on the “News Chair” to read the (two-hour!) news, snub the staff, take samples of the polluted river for analysis, report the 105th birthday of a local, repair the channel’s transmitter mast with a small screwdriver, keep your wife happy with a kiss and the whole operation going. The lean, moustached, and hectic chain-smoker Pino Maniaci is an institution in Partinico, a town in the Sicilian province of Palermo. He and his whole family run the local TV channel, waging an embittered war of ruthless exposure against the Mafia, who frequently strike back just as ruthlessly. All the hopes of the long-suffering population rest on him. But the law to digitise television is threatening to bring the small channel to its financial knees …
Caterina Monzani and Sergio Vega Borrego tell this tale of a modern-day Don Quixote fighting against the windmills of corruption and capitalism in the turbulent style of the Italian comedy. Above all, they show that the disappearance of independent local journalism is an irrecoverable loss for democracy.

Grit Lemke

Upstairs

Animated Film
UK
2013
3 minutes
subtitles: 
No

Credits DOK Leipzig Logo

Daniel O'Rourke
Matthias Hoegg
David Kamp
Matthias Hoegg
Matthias Hoegg, Jason Kotey, Nick Brooks
Matthias Hoegg
David Kamp
A short story about how much we know – or want to know – about the lives of our next door neighbours in urban flats. An inexplicable sound from the flat above leaves Jeff sleepless and anxious to find out the truth about what's really going on upstairs.