Kumu Documentary City Symphonies I

The fifth season of Kumu Documentary will be dedicated to life in urban environments, since more than 50% of the world’s population already resides in urban areas, and this figure is expected to rise to 80% by 2050.

This process is occurring at an unstoppable pace, which is why it is a good idea to take a look at the state of the world today, so as to better grasp what the world of the future may be like. In March and April we will see cities like Helsinki, Mumbai, Liverpool, Shanghai, Bogota, Cairo, New York, Copenhagen and Winnipeg through lens of talented documentary film makers. The city provides storytellers with a broad range of thematic opportunities – it can be viewed as a social phenomenon, an architectural wonder, the information society, a topographical object, a tourist magnet, a crime scene, poetry and more. The city has a thousand faces and a thousand ways of being seen – it is one of documentary makers’ most inspirational sources. Screenings will be preceded by talks and discussions.

02. March at 18:00
Symphony of the City

Rež / Director Heikki Ahola, Soome / Finland 1995, 59’

In the late 1920s a wave of city symphonies swept over the world. Berlin, Paris, Moscow, Rio de Janeiro… Cinematic interpretations were made of every self-respecting metropolis. Over 60 years later, film students at the University of Art and Design Helsinki had a brilliant idea: let’s make one about Helsinki. Their film crews explored the city, documenting its inhabitants,their chores and celebrations, joys and sorrows.

Heikki Ahola has brilliantly orchestrated the diverse material into an enjoyable ensemble, a melange of varied themes, comparable to the best of symphonies. The star of the film, the city of Helsinki, pulsates with life around the clock like a living organism. Tuomas Kantelinen’s music, composed specifically for this purpose, crowns the experience. Symphony of the City is also a documentary about the mid 1990s, a glimpse into what is now inevitably history, which adds another layer of interest to it.

9. March at 18:00
CITIES ON SPEED - Mumbai Disconnected

Rež /Director Frederik Jacobi, Camilla Nielsson, Denmark 2009, 58’

Like a city on steroids, Mumbai is rapidly becoming one of the world's biggest megacities. But it's all happening on a narrow peninsula with an infrastructure on the verge of complete collapse. Every day, 10-12 people die from falling off the overcrowded public trains. On the roads, cars come to a stand-still in serial traffic jams. To make matters worse, the Nano, India's new popular and affordable mini car, has just been launched. Through three interwoven human stories, we meet the people at the frontline of Mumbai's infrastructural battle. One thing is certain: urban planning is not easy in the world's largest democracy!


16. March at 18:00
Of Time and the City

Rež./ Director Terence Davies, UK 2008, 74’

Of Time and The City is both a love song and a eulogy to the directors birthplace of Liverpool. It is also a response to memory, reflection and the experience of losing a sense of place as the skyline changes and time takes it toll. Terence Davies' ode to Liverpool has wowed audiences and critics alike after being hailed as the highlight of the Cannes Film Festival where it received its premiere. This is a spectacular return to form by Davies, long-hailed as one of Britain’s greatest filmmakers. Of Time and the City is an illuminating and heartfelt work, powerfully evoking life in post-war Britain while exploring the nature of love, memory, and the toll that the passing years takes on the cities and communities that we cherish. This is no simple documentary; it is an entrancing piece of autobiographical cinema that reaches far beyond the city in which it is set, weaving a rich tapestry from archive and contemporary footage, music, voice, literary quotation, personal reminiscence and wickedly funny observation. Terence Davies is an English film director. He is noted for his recurring themes of
emotional (and sometimes physical) endurance, the influence of memory on everyday life and the potentially crippling effects of dogmatic religiosity on the emotional life of individuals and societies. Stylistically, Davies’ works are notable for their symmetrical compositions, “symphonic” structure and measured pace. He is the sole screenwriter of all his films. Due to his refusal to compromise, Davies’ output has been comparatively sporadic. His early short films, Children, Madonna and Child and Death and Transfiguration were screened together at film festivals throughout Europe and the U.S. as The Terence Davies Trilogy, winning numerous awards. To date he has released four feature films. The first two, Distant Voices, Still Lives and The Long Day Closes, are very autobiographical films set in 40’s and 50’s Liverpool; his two most recent films, The Neon Bible and the House of Mirth, are adaptations of novels by John Kennedy Toole and Edith Wharton, respectively.


Trailer: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=d6BAoo8hmlU

23. March at 18:00
CITIES ON SPEED - Shanghai Space

Rež /Director Nanna Frank Möller, Denmark 2009, 60’

Shanghai is an explosion of transformation. Every other day a new building is completed, and every year the city's population grows by half a million people. Authorities are desperately seeking out more space, while the city's inhabitants must adapt to constantly changing surroundings. In an office on the 20th floor, government advisor Professor Shu prepares the next generation of young urban planners for Shanghai's future. In order to find the space needed for Shanghai's millions of inhabitants, planners are now looking underground.

Shanghai Space: http://www.dfi.dk/faktaomfilm/danishfilms/dffilm.aspx?id=22404

30. March at 18:00
CITIES ON SPEED - Bogotá Change

Rež/ Director Andreas Møl Dalsgaard, Denmark 2009, 58’

A vaccine against crime. Weapons melted down for baby cutlery. »Bogotá Change« is the story of two charismatic mayors, Antanas Mockus and Enrique Peñalosa who, with unorthodox methods, in less than 10 years turned one of the world's most dangerous, violent and corrupt capitals into a peaceful model city populated by caring citizens. With Mockus and Peñalosa and key members of their staff as first hand witnesses, the film uncovers the ideas, philosophies and strategies that underlie the changes in Bogotá and which are now being exported to cities worldwide.




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