Cunning and slender, harassed and on the run, Reynard is a metaphor of a never ending obsession with each breath, each gesture, each thought. Marta seeks in the emptiness of her body a way to arrive to her inner essence, in an abstract search of a free spirit that might end in her own enclosure. —Leonor Noivo
Reynard is an act of collusion between a director and an actress. Together they make a film about a shared secret, a feeling and a “disturbance” that is the basis of their friendship. The film’s title in Portuguese, Raposa (or Fox in English), is a metaphor for something fugitive— like the film’s elusive protagonist, plagued by an obsession to control what circulates between her interior and exterior: food, thoughts, emotions. Played with charged quietude by the actress Patrícia Guerreiro, Marta spends her days counting time passed, calories ingested and steps taken. She narrates the workings of her mind as Noivo’s camera records her routines with the density characteristic of 16mm—endowing each mundane action with the weight and sensuality of a ritual. In their calibration of intimacy without intrusion, Noivo and Guerreiro create a meditation on fiction and bodies—and the fictions we tell of our bodies. — Tendai John Mutambu
Back to 2069
Back to 2069 looks at the eroded landscape of the Greek militarized Aegean island Lemnos, a political space where a myth meets contemporary concerns upon the relation of virtual and real image production. On the island, a solitary man shape-shifts from argonaut to avatar through various hallucinations, experiencing different states of embodiment and disembodiment. Although he exiled himself from Athens to escape the crisis, past and future scenarios of conflict are gradually catching up on him. What appears to be a fiction is made out of documentary footage that interweaves the man’s venture on the island with recorded Arma 3 video-game sessions from Youtube. —Elise Florenty & Marcel Türkowsky
Back to 2069 continues Elise Florenty & Marcel Türkowsky’s project of fascinating, visually-sumptuous doc-fiction hybrids. The duo’s complex and layered films inhabit spaces and haunt them like ghastly phantasmagoria. In this film, one might be tempted to say that space is the island of Lemnos. But in truth, the film cycles through so many registers—news footage, maps, video games or cinematography—that it’s hard to tell which space is real and which is virtual.
The film captures the essence of what it’s like to exist in a secluded space, where one can either fold into the surrounding history, or refuse to do so at all and slide deep into technological and virtual realms. Capturing the shifts in space, time, position and frame of mind quite effectively, Back to 2069 argues that one can never fully exit the world no matter how hard he may try. —Herb Shellenberger