polski
Program

Perfect Garden dir. Mara Mattuschka, Chris HaringPerfect Garden dir. Mara Mattuschka, Chris Haring
Third Eye: Communes

The subject dealt with in 2014 will be communes as seen from the perspective of the children who grew up in them. Communes as an attempt to create a new social reality are a utopian experiment conducted by adults; from the point of view of children, however, they are rather dystopian. In addition to feature films, we will also show primary records: documentaries, film journals and video experiments that bring us closer to facts, memories and immediate emotions.

curator: Ewa Szabłowska

We would like to show audiences how the traditional model of the family was questioned in the United States and Europe in the 1960s, 1970s, and 1980s. We are aware of this, to a large degree, from films made by rebellious members of communes. What we are not aware of is the legacy that these experiments left behind. Every commune was a utopia that was meant to create better human beings who could function in a brave, new world. In practice, the children who grew up in communes have mixed feelings. Is the family a source of suffering? And is a larger family a source of greater suffering? Or is the opposite the case: is it liberation? What was the position of women in communes? Were they not, under the guise of equality, used for cooking and cleaning? And what about free love and its implications? There are still a lot of children looking for their real fathers from among commune members. This, however, is not going to be a reactionary overview, nor will it heap praise on traditional family values.

There are, at the moment, a lot of films about communes. Perhaps this is because, as the statistics show, there have never been so many singles living in one-person households as there are now. In an era of alienation, conversations with a computer screen, Internet pornography, living together with real flesh-and-blood human beings might seem like an appealing alternative. But it would be impossible, of course, to commit the mistakes of the past. Communes are now again rising to the surface.

The program of the section, curated by Ewa Szabłowska, will include Jason Osder’s multi-award-winning and much-discussed film Let the Fire Burn, a found-footage investigation into the bloody pacification of MOVE, an African-American commune in Philadelphia whose members combined the ideals of a radical return to their roots with an armed struggle against the system. In the film American Commune, sisters Rena and Nadine Mundo return to the Farm, the legendary hippy commune where they grew up, which provides the perfect pretext for their confrontation with their past and the largest socialist experiment in American history. The dark side of this phenomenon is revealed in the film My Fathers, My Mother and Me by Paul-Julien Robert, who grew up in the largest utopian community in Europe. As a young girl, his mother joined the experimental commune of Otto Muehl, a Viennese Actionist known for his brutal, scatological performance art who founded a group based on the psychological assumptions of Wilhelm Reich. Through sexual freedom, art, and group therapy, the group’s members were to be liberated from repressive petty-bourgeois norms.

The section will be given some Polish flavor in the form of Agnieszka Polska’s film Hair. The plot is based on a couple of hippies from Krakow who travel to India. Hair takes an ironic look at the differences between East and West, and the filmmaker questions just how resistant revolutionary ideas are to change.

Alongside these documentaries, the program will also feature the dreamlike Perfect Garden, by Mara Mattuschka and Chris Haring, as well as the experimental film Encounters with Your Inner Trotsky Child, by Jim Finn, a master of pastiche and confabulation, whose The Juche Idea was screened as part of the International Competition of Films on Art in 2009.

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