posted on: 9 November 2016
FILM SERIES: PROMISED LAND
The Suspended Lives of Refugees and Migrants
MON 14 NOV – TUE 13 DEC 2016
Promised Land is a series of events that provides a vital platform to address challenges posed by the current rise of neo-nationalist and populist movements in Europe and the tightening of borders trapping hundreds of thousands of refugees and migrants in a state of prolonged suspension. The Promised Land film series focuses on refugees’ and migrants’ state between departure and arrival, a life on hold, but also the persistent hope to escape and reach their destination. The film series is programmed by Goethe-Institut London.
MON 14 NOV 7PM, GOETHE-INSTITUT, BOOK
For many refugees a mobile phone is indispensable. They use it to organise their travel or to communicate with other refugees and their relatives back home. #MyEscape samples and combines footage filmed by refugees on their escape routes from Afghanistan, Pakistan, Syria, and Eritrea to Germany and combines this material with their narrative reports given retrospectively during extended interviews after their arrival in Germany.
Germany 2016, colour, 90 mins. With English subtitles. Directed by Elke Sasse.
The screening will be followed by a Q & A with der director Elke Sasse
hosted by Marta Welander, Founder, Refugee Rights Data Project (RRDP).
WED 16 NOV 7PM, GOETHE-INSTITUT, BOOK
In 1989, Cambodian director Rithy Panh, best known for his documentary S21 – The Khmer Rouge Killing Machine, returned to the borderland between Cambodia and Thailand, where he had been a refugee 10 years before, to make his debut film: Named after what, between 1985 and 1993, was one of the largest refugee camps in South East Asia, his remarkable film calmly follows the daily routine in the camp, in particular that of a Cambodian woman and her family. Treating its protagonists, with respect and a keen interest, it shows a life between hopelessness and the insistence to survive. A compelling document that reminds us of one of the largest refugee crises in the 20th century that took a major and sustained international effort to resolve.
France 1989, colour 90 mins. With English subtitles. Directed by Rithy Panh.
Introduced by May Adadol Ingawanij, Reader in Visual Culture,
University of Westminster.
MAY THEY REST IN REVOLT (FIGURES OF WAR)
QU’ILS REPOSENT EN RÉVOLTE (DES FIGURES DE GUERRES)
MON 21 NOV 6.30PM, GOETHE-INSTITUT, BOOK
French filmmaker and activist Sylvain George spent 3 years, from July 2007 to November 2010, around Calais filming migrants and refugees, capturing scenes from their daily routines, such as washing themselves by a river or having meals, but also police round-ups, attempts to stow away under lorries and or destroying their fingerprint with hot nails. The second part of the film centres on “The Jungle” and the attempt of the French government to demolish part of the camp in 2009. Filmed in stark black and white, the film does not construct a narrative around one or several protagonists, but keeps shifting its focus, always paying close attention to each gesture and every detail of these exposed lives.
France 2007 – 2010, b/w & colour, 157mins, with English subtitles.
Directed by Sylvain George.
Followed by a Q & A with director Sylvain George.
A WALNUT TREE, UK PREMIERE
FRI 2 DEC 7PM, GOETHE-INSTITUT, BOOK
Due to ongoing clashes between the Pakistani military and various insurgent Taliban groups in Northern Pakistan, Baba, a Pashtun poet and former teacher has been internally displaced to the Jalozai refugee camp together with his son’s family. While the latter is trying to eke out a living, the old man finds his life in the camp meaningless, and increasingly unhappy, he insists on going home. Pakistani director Ammar Aziz, whose grandmother could not forget her life in India after migrating to Pakistan as a result of the Partition, has created a moving documentary about what it means to be uprooted.
Pakistan 2015, colour, 81 mins. With English subtitles. Directed by Ammar Aziz.
Followed by a Q & A with the director Ammar Aziz via Skype.
SAT 3 DEC 6PM TBC, CENTRAL SAINT MARTINS
On 14.09.2012 at 2.56pm, a cruise liner reports the sighting of a drifting dinghy with 13 passengers on board to the Spanish Maritime Rescue Centre, which then sends a helicopter and a rescue ship to assist the ship-wrecked boat. From the ensuing radio communication, interspersed with the voices of tourists, crew members, and migrants, a complex soundscape evolves. Combined with the mobile clip of the dinghy persistently moving across the screen, it opens up a space for reflection about the relations between Europe and those that want to reach it and about how we as viewers position ourselves within this constellation.
Germany 2016, colour, 93 minutes, with English subtitles. Directed by Philip Scheffner.
Introduced by Nicole Wolf, Lecturer in Visual Cultures, Goldsmiths,
University of London.
Part of the symposium Promised Land.
WED 7 DEC 7PM, GOETHE-INSTITUT, BOOK
A sparse hotel room in Tangier, a young woman talks about her mother and her brothers whom she adores, her father who abandoned them and about her adventurous journeys from Peru via French Guiana. There, she worked, fell in love, slipped into prostitution. Now in Morocco, she wants to get to France. Kelly is angry, she jokes, mimics dialogues, turns melancholy, then defiant, letting a tough and at the same time affectionate and imaginative personality shine through. Occasionally, the perspective shifts to people on top the surrounding roof or to the sea with Gibraltar in the distance. Once in a while we hear the quiet voice of someone, who remembers Kelly as if from the future, and wonders what happened to her and wishes her well.
France 2013, colour 67 mins. With English subtitles. Directed by Stéphanie Régnier. With Kelly.
Introduced by Carolina Gottardo,
Director, Latin American Women’s Rights Service (LAWRS).
TUE 13 DEC 7PM, GOETHE-INSTITUT, BOOK
Following the death of his father, the young Malian Mohamed Sali Sanougo Keita was chosen to become the family’s provider. The cows were sold for 1500 Euros to finance his journey to Europe. Shot over a period of three years, the film follows his journey from Gao in Northern Mali, through Algeria to Morocco, from where he wants to get into Europe via Melilla. It is a journey interrupted by extended stop-overs during which he tries to earn money to sustain himself and to pay for his passage to Europe. In Algeria near the Moroccan border Mohamed meets Jerry Rocky Salomon from Cameroon, who also wants to get to Europe to pursue a career in music. Following the rhythm of movement and stagnation, the film oscillates between observation and longer interview sequences, giving its protagonists the opportunity to explain the practical details of migrant life and to talk about their fears and hopes. As the director Miriam Faßbender could not accompany the journey continuously over three years, she provided amateur cameras to the migrants whose footage accounts for 7% of the film.
Germany 2011, colour, 92mins. With English subtitles.Directed by Miriam Faßbender. With Mohamed Sali Sanougo Keita and Jerry Rocky Salomon
Followed by a Q & A with the director Miriam Faßbender.
PROMISED LAND | ARTIST COMMISSION
QUICKSAND BY NIKOLAI SKYUM BENDIX LARSEN
SAT 3 DEC, CENTRAL SAINT MARTINS
As a central part of the event series Promised Land, Nikolaj Bendix Skyum Larsen, in collaboration with Duncan Pickstock, has been commissioned by the Goethe-Institut London in association with Culture+Conflict to create a new piece of work responding to and reflecting on the theme. Titled Quicksand, the audio installation will be premiered at the Promised Land symposium on 3 December, and subsequently shown at Hull City of Culture in spring 2017.
For more information please visit www.goethe.de/uk
VENUES & TICKETS
50 Princes Gate
London SW7 2PH
TICKETS £3, free for Goethe-Institut
language students and library members,
BOOKING 020 7596 4000 or via Eventbrite
Central Saint Martins
1 Granary Square
London N1C 4AA
BOOKING & INFORMATION www.goethe.de/uk
Promised Land is supported by the Arts Council of England
and the Stanley Thomas Johnson Foundation