PICTURES OF THE INTERIOR - SEAN GARRITY, EXPERIMENTAL, 2003, 4 MIN 46 SEC–WINNIPEG
Filmmaker Sean Garrity began his career in Canada after travelling through Asia and South America for several
years. With pictures of the interior, a black & white photographic short film, he offers a mnemonic exploration of a few fragments of his travels.
Through a contemplative succession of still images and voice-over narration, with no music, Garrity takes on the gaze of the wanderer and the very personal and intimate tone of the confidant. He slowly shows a collection of photographs–artistic photos more than documents–, most of which he took during his travels, while adding personal observations. Each photo becomes a small treasure chest that opens up and reveals a few moments of interiority, some elusive memories. Odours, sounds, atmospheres, shadows, lights, presences, and spirits practically come to life in these still images and the wandering soul expressed through the words. Both sensual and profound, the film gracefully dabbles in a kind of nostalgia, without artifice. The final image, taken by his father, shows Sean Garrity as a child, sitting in front of a television. It could have been the first image of the film, the one where everything started. Placed there, in conclusion, it makes for a beautifully, unexpectedly open ending.
SNOWBIRDS—JOANNIE LAFRENIÈRE, DOCUMENTARY, 2017 48 MIN. – MONTRÉAL
The angle through which photographer and filmmaker Joannie Lafrenière tackles travel and migration in SNOWBIRDS gives a complementary, antagonistic vision to the theme of the selection.
Truly a living diorama, this documentary feature is a very authentic, respectful, and funny portrait of a community of willing exiles—Quebec retirees who, like migratory birds, settle in Florida every winter. Looking for leisure activities, warmth, and entertainment, they spend six months per year in their mobile home, on a piece of land they have acquired and where they feel “at home.”
The great coherence between the visual style, aesthetic choices and subject of the film makes for a charming whole. The meticulous framing, field size, and “mise en scène” depict the protagonists in their daily life, in their domestic environment or practising their favourite activities, while highlighting the kitschiness of their world. By presenting this gallery of colourful, endearing characters, Lafrenière delineates a unique sociological phenomenon. The people we meet share their motivations, their journey, their quest, their values, their dreams, their fear of illness and death, letting us discover their vision of movement, travel, and life. And it’s absolutely fascinating!
Each photo becomes a small treasure chest that opens up and reveals a few moments of interiority, some elusive memories.