OFFICIEL SELECTION / INTERNATIONAL COMPETITION 2014   FIDMARSEILLE 2014

international premiere

   
 

LE BEAU DANGER

 

René FRÖLKE

 

 

GERMANY
2014
Colour et N&B
16mm, DV PAL
100’

Original version
English, Italian
Roumanian, French
Subtitles
English, French
Scenario, image and editing
René Frölke
Sound
Julia Hubermann,
Paolo Benzi
Tudor Calnegu

Casting
Norman Manea

Production and distribution
Joon Film
In association with
Okta Film

Filmography
– JEREMY Y. CALL
BOBBY O. ODER
MORGENTHAU
WITHOUT TEARS, 2012
– FÜHRUNG/GUIDED
TOUR, 2011
– OF THE SALAMENDER'S
EPOUSAL WITH THE
GREEN SNAKE, 2010

For almost two years, René Frölke has followed and filmed Norman Manea, a Romanian writer in exile in New York City, through his world-round adventures brought about by his new status as a revered novelist: book fairs, award ceremonies, conferences, meetings with fellow writers; but also on less social occasions: private strolls, a trip back home, etc. Is it a portrait of an author, then? Kind of, except that 170 abstracts from Manea’s work, quoted on black-on-white intertitles, punctuate and interrupt what could have otherwise looked like convenient naturalism. Through the mute insistence of the full-screen pages, what quickly becomes clear is that Frölke is less interested in a specific detail, or in such-and-such anecdote or biographical aspect, than in more delicate and generic a question: what is the stuff a writer is made of? A question completed or complicated by another: how can cinema show what writing is? Or what a writer is? This endeavour is challenging, obviously, but it is also as respectful of literature as it is concerned about the specific resources of cinema. Near the middle of the film, two snails meet and brush slightly before parting ways: the film invites us to follow their pace, without haste, only driven by curiosity — to read, and to see. (JPR) 

 

 

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