During the fourth day of the International Film Festival in Marrakesh, in its twentieth session, there were two dialogue segments with Scottish actress Tilda Swinton and Japanese director and screenwriter Naomi Kawase.
While the film screenings program continued through films programmed in the “Official Competition,” “Panorama of Moroccan Cinema,” “Honorations,” “Emerging Audiences,” “Celebratory Screenings,” and “Special Screenings” segments.
Interview with Swinton
Within the framework of the section “A Dialogue with…”, Swinton reviewed the main stations in her professional experience, the directors she dealt with, and the paths of her cinematic creativity. She stressed that the success of cinematic projects lies in the nature of the relationship that brings together the various parties in the artistic work.
The meeting with Swinton was an opportunity to watch excerpts from some of her most prominent cinematic works, which demonstrated her professional qualifications.
Swinton, who was honored at the 19th edition of the Marrakesh Film Festival, said that she is particularly interested in the issue of framing, and she saw that each character in a particular film is a self-existing unit.
In addition to reviewing her artistic path, Swinton shared with the audience her point of view on the development witnessed by cinema, in connection with a number of global crises, societal developments, and technical transformations.
Swinton, who previously chaired the jury of the 18th edition of the Marrakesh Festival in 2019, is considered one of the most prolific and distinguished creators among the girls and boys of her generation. She is also a rebellious artist who cannot be placed in a specific box. She surprises and dazzles her audience with every new work. She is known to be an integrated representative, with multiple features and choices at the diagnostic level. What gave it presence and value at the global level.
Swinton recently played the starring role in the films “Three Thousand Years of Longing” (2022) by George Miller, “Asteroid City” (2023) by Lewis Anderson, and “The Killer” (2023) by David Fincher, who participated in the official competition of the 80th session of the festival. Film Venice.
Interview with Kawase
For her part, Naomi Kawase, in her dialogue segment, spoke about her artistic beginnings, her vision of cinema and her relationship with it, stressing that filmmaking is a serious matter, as it monitors reality. She added that she did not see herself as a film director at the beginning of her life, before she found herself called to search for answers to the questions she faced on an existential level.
Kawasi recalled her first documentary experiences, which were immersed in contemplation and depiction of reality, while questioning the world, monitoring human fragility and the victory of family values, while stressing that cinema must serve people, before anything else. I also talked about the supposed boundaries between documentary and fictional films, and thus between the real and the fictional, and stopped at the actors’ performance and the extent of their ability to create spontaneously, away from artificiality.
Kawasi draws inspiration from reality, while her films cross the boundaries between documentary and fiction. It has won many awards at the largest international festivals.
As she continues to explore new spaces of expression around the world, in 2010, Kawase established the Nara International Film Festival in her hometown, where she dedicated her efforts to shaping the emerging generations.
Kawase has written numerous articles and research, while continuing her eclectic creativity beyond gender.
The dream of liberation and the pain of loss
The official competition of the Marrakesh Film Festival continued with the entry of two new films into the competition. This concerns the film “The Dormitory” (2023) by its Turkish director Nehir Tuna, and “The Other Son” (2023) by its Colombian director, Juan Sebastian Quebrada.
The events of “The Dormitory” take place in 1997, in the midst of escalating tension in Turkey between religious people and secularists, when Ahmed, at the age of fourteen, is sent by his father, who had recently converted to Islam, to an Islamic boarding school to imbibe the values of Islam.
Despite his efforts to be an exemplary son, Ahmed faces difficulty adapting to the violence shown towards him by the youth at the boarding school. He began to feel isolated in his school, and kept his change of residence a secret that no one knew about. Ahmed only found what he was looking for in his new friend, a resourceful child who knew how to circumvent the boarding school’s controls, so together they began dreaming of liberation.
In his approach to the complexity of contemporary Turkish society, embodied in issues such as preserving traditions or masculinity, Tuna, whose first feature film “The Dormitory” remains, combines his criticism of society with the aesthetics of the image. He graduated from the Sundance Institute and was chosen to participate in the laboratory. Sundance Screenwriters Lab in 2019, and the Directors and Screenwriters Lab in 2020.
As for “The Other Son,” it tells the story of Federico and his brother Simone, who live their adolescence to the fullest, until the day when Simone dies as a result of falling from a balcony at a party. Federico’s family is falling apart as he tries to live the last weeks of school normally. As he is overcome with grief, he tries to get closer to Laura, his brother’s ex-girlfriend, with whom he seems to feel comfortable.
This film, which is a human drama about the pain of loss, highlights two ways to overcome the pain of losing a brother and son. The first lies in fleeing the family home for a certain period to forget what happened, through the character of Federico, while the second, which the mother chose, lies in coexisting with… The pain of loss and recalling the memory of the deceased, as it is the best way to honor the deceased and respect his soul.
Death for Sale (2011)
It is one of the films chosen as part of the special section honoring Moroccan director Faouzi Bensaidi, during the current session, alongside Danish actor Mads Mikkelsen.
The film talks about the desire of three marginalized and unemployed young men to break through the social barrier, even through crime. Despite their different motives for robbing a jewelry store, they also disagree a lot with each other to the point of violent quarrels. Malik, 26 years old, is madly in love with Dounia and wants to free her from the world of prostitution. As for Allal, 30 years old, he dreams of making a lifetime through drug trafficking, while Sofiane, 18 years old, feeds on the idea of taking revenge on society. Robbing the largest jewelry store in the city of Tetouan represents a common goal that the three young men aspire to. Given the reality under which they are suffering, they have nothing to lose and are not intimidated by anything to achieve their goal.
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