NOVEMBER: Pushing boundaries
- When I Will Be Dictator
Since the 17th Century, the Manakamana Temple in Nepal has been a popular place of Hindu worship. But instead of yet another conventional documentary with an exotic backdrop, this is a new and challenging experiment courtesy of Harvard’s Sensory Ethnography Laboratory that triumphed in 2012 with “Leviathan”. Using a 16mm camera, the directors board a state-of-the-art cable car that transports pilgrims to the sacred grounds of Manakamana and document the experiences of the passengers through 11 trips / 11 fixed-camera shots, recording the surprise of the air-borne journey, the nostalgic remembrances from when they had to make the treacherous hike on foot, their spontaneous conversations or even the deathly silence that dominates the limited space. Aging believers in traditional garb, tourists, unsuspecting sacrificial animals and young heavy metal fans fly over the jungle of Nepal on a sometimes tender, sometimes humorous and other times thoughtful journey that won the Golden Leopard at the Locarno International Film Festival. A sui generis installation in motion bridges different cultures and generations – maybe even the gap between ancient tradition, religious ritual and cutting-edge technology.