Film Archive

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The Poets Visit Juana Bignozzi

Las poetas visitan a Juana Bignozzi
Laura Citarella, Mercedes Halfon
International Competition 2020
Documentary Film
Argentina
2019
90 minutes
Spanish
subtitles: 
English, German Subtitles for deaf and hard-of-hearing

Credits DOK Leipzig Logo

Laura Citarella
Mercedes Halfon
Ingrid Pokropek
Inés Duacastella
Agustín Mendilaharzu
Miguel de Zuviría
Alejo Moguillansky
Valeria Fernández
Marcos Canosa

A poet’s life ends and a film begins to carry on her legacy, prosaically at first. When Juana Bignozzi dies in 2015, the intellectual property rights to her work pass to the young author Mercedes Halfon – as the aged lady had decreed. But Mercedes also inherits a refrigerator and a lot of junk that must be cleared out of the orphaned apartment in Buenos Aires. Together with young filmmakers, she transforms the duty into a poetically fulfilling project.

The result is not only an unusual but actually a non-portrait of a poet – and perhaps not even a result. Rather, it is a continuously growing equation of superimposed faces, texts and images that refuses to simply work out. They look at each other as if in rear-view mirrors: Juana Bignozzi, who speaks to the young from her writings full of humble reverence, and her young female admirers who, reading, filming and browsing through Bignozzi’s legacy, feel almost embarrassed by these declarations of love. What confidence the deceased had in them! What tremendous expectations she had of those whose mother or grandmother she could have been! Their own poetic achievements seem too half-hearted to Mercedes and Laura to ever live up to such advance praise. But even as they doubt, they are already deep into it.
Sylvia Görke
Nominated for Prize of the Interreligious Jury, FIPRESCI Prize
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Family Ties
Poetry and Crossing Boundaries
Redistribution and Having a Say
Small Worlds, Big People
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Vicenta

Vicenta
Darío Doria
International Competition 2020
Documentary Film
Argentina
2020
69 minutes
Spanish
subtitles: 
English

Credits DOK Leipzig Logo

Darío Doria
Felicitas Raffo
Pamela Livia Delgado
Virginia Croatto
Darío Doria
Luis Camardella
Florencia Gattari
Darío Doria
Darío Doria
Darío Doria
Federico Esquerro
Ezequiel Menalled
Liliana Herrero

A human tragedy on the backdrop of a legal and medical scandal which in 2007 lead to legal action against the Argentinean state before the UN Human Rights Commission and a verdict of guilty in 2011. The mentally and physically handicapped 16-year-old girl Laura had been raped by her uncle in 2006. But a legal abortion which had already been officially granted at the request of her mother, Vicenta, was opposed by lawyers and doctors.

“Vicenta” conveys the details of this truly incredible imposition in the form of a fable in which plasticine figures seem rooted to the spot in a Kafkaesque nightmare. Only the camera moves through this scenery, usually in travellings across the set-up. Very occasionally excerpts of newscasts, broadcast from small monitors on the stage of this “puppet show”, authenticate the narrative. And yet the whole spectrum of conceivable feelings between being openly paralysed with shock and proud self-empowerment of the mother who stubbornly fights for justice for herself and her daughter is conveyed and made comprehensible. In the above-mentioned UN ruling, the Argentinean state was accused of having fundamentally disregarded the recognised right to freedom from inhuman, cruel and degrading treatment in the case of Laura and her mother Vicenta.
Ralph Eue
Nominated for Prize of the Interreligious Jury, FIPRESCI Prize
#
Family Ties
Redistribution and Having a Say
State of the World
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