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5 December 2018: Slow Short Film Festival, Part 2


The Slow Short Film Festival is an annual festival celebrating works that employ an art cinema aesthetic that has emerged over the past three decades. The aesthetics of Slow Cinema can be broadly characterised by a combination of long takes and long shots, a use of non-professional actors and a focus on everyday activities. Leading figures include Béla Tarr, Lav Diaz, Chantal Akerman, Tsai Ming-Liang, Abbas Kiarostami, Apichatpong Weerasethakul, Pedro Costa and Ben Rivers. Though a number of slow films reach gargantuan lengths, some exceeding 10 hours, slow films more generally have running times comparable with mainstream productions, suggesting that it is the film’s form and content, rather than its length, that make it slow. With this in mind, SSFF exhibits short films (under 45 minutes) that engage with the principles of slow cinema.

From Andy Warhol’s Empire to James Benning’s landscape films to Lav Diaz’s monumental national allegories, slow films often shifts focus away from mainstream cinema’s preoccupation with individual agents to explore the temporality of vast, non-human phenomena. But the process of making these films, and the experience of watching them, is also a personal journey in which filmmaker and viewer are given the freedom and time to engage with complicated subjects and reach their own conclusions about ambivalent matters. In Session 2, directors Cristina HaneČ™, Oren Gerner, and Wang Chun Hong become subjects of their own art, exemplifying how slow cinema, as a laborious filmmaking practice as well as an aesthetic defined by rigorous structure, is adept at dealing with highly personal issues in all their complexity.

Double Reflection
Wang Chun Hong
2017 | 40'22 min | B/W | Digital
Chinese with English subtitles

Wang confronts himself with his camera. Through the kino-eye he reconstitutes himself as a subject, and examines his place in time and society.

Oren Gerner
2014 | 17 min | Colour | Digital

The house is a space where past, present and future mix into a chronicle of separation. Oren returns to his family home to pack his belongings and move to a new apartment with his girlfriend. During the day, Oren’s liminal place - between child and adult, between intimacy and alienation – is exposed.

António and Catarina
Cristina Hanes
2017 | 40 min | Colour | Digital

A 70-year-old man and a 25-year-old woman share a candid and twisted relationship with a deadline. Trapped in one room, Antonio and Catarina are negotiating the terms of their relationship.