Monitor: a SIFF film program on ERT2, airing Thursdays at 23:30 from August 6 to August 27, 2020

SIFF presents a film program of four (4) weekly screenings in collaboration with ERT, the Hellenic Broadcasting Corporation.
The Festival extends its new thematic “Off Season” to a new means of projection.
The film program, entitled “Monitor”, will be broadcast every Thursday of August 2020 (6, 13, 20, 27/8), at 23:30 on ERT2.

Film Program

Monitor #1
August 6, 2020, 23:30

Only Men, 2019, Greece, 70 min.
Director: Eva Stefani 

Fraud, 2016, USA, 52 min.
Director: Dean Fleischer-Camp

 

Monitor #2
August 13, 2020, 23:30

Gambling, Gods, and LSD, 2002, Canada / Switzerland, 180 min.
Director: Peter Mettler

 

Monitor #3
August 20, 2020, 23:30

Hotel Diaries / Episode: B&B, 2005, UK, 6 min.
Director: John Smith

Gallivant, 1996, UK, 100 min.
Director: Andrew Kötting

 

Monitor #4
August 27, 2020, 23:30

Mountain Trip, 1999, Austria, 4 min.
Director: Siegfried A. Fruhauf

Fake Fruit Factory, 1986, USA, 22 min.
Director: Chick Strand

The Grand Bizarre, 2019, USA, 60 min.
Director: Jodie Mack

Film Descriptions

Monitor #1
“An infinitely large number of infinitesimally small actions”
Leo Tolstoy

Film (1): 

Only Men
2019, Greece, 70 min.
Director: Eva Stefani

Eva Stefani’s work, presented in the Pavilion of Greece at the 58th International Art Exhibition—La Biennale di Venezia, retells human stories that at first sight seem marginal, of little importance, yet unravel as significant paradoxes of realism and fiction. Small ceremonies of private life. “An infinitely large number of infinitesimally small actions,” as per Tolstoy’s description of history. She cites her own previous filmic stories and subversive acts to archival footage in her work. And like the pages of a diary, it reveals the intimacy of the human condition through an unofficial telling of the past that casts light upon history.

Film (2): 

Fraud
2016, USA, 52 min.
Director: Dean Fleischer-Camp

Between 2008-15, a man filmed his life obsessively and uploaded it to YouTube. The hundreds of hours of raw footage revealed a very personal and intimate look into an American family’s life and their struggle to survive. Fraud is a film created by piecing this colossal trove of home video into a narrative.

 

Monitor #2
An inquiry into the possibility of transcendence from our present situation—the ultimate trip. The question isn’t about travel to new places, but how can we travel beyond places, beyond time. Sites, days, and people swirl and morph into: experience unchained.

Film (1):

Gambling, Gods and LSD
2002, Canada / Switzerland, 180 min.
Director: Peter Mettler 

A filmmaker’s quest for transcendence becomes a three-hour trip across countries and cultures, between people, over time. From the scene of his childhood in Toronto, Peter Mettler sets out on a journey that includes evangelism at the airport strip, demolition in Las Vegas, tracings in the Nevada desert, chemistry and street life in Switzerland, and the coexistence of technology and divinity in contemporary India. Everywhere along the way, the same themes are found: thrill-seeking, luck, destiny, belief, expanding perception, and the craving for security in an uncertain world. Fact joins with fantasy; the search for meaning and the search for ecstasy begin to merge.

 

Monitor #3
The unique and lonely beauty of a touristic setting off season: empty halls in the hotel, a sparsely populated beach in winter; haunted spaces outside the season of mundane summer hedonism. Through a mix of travel diaries, home movies, and more, these spaces invite us in. 

Film (1): 

Hotel Diaries / episode: B&B
2005, UK, 6 min.
Director: John Smith 

Made over six years in the hotels of six different countries, Hotel Diaries charts the ‘War on Terror’ era of Bush and Blair through a series of video recordings that relate personal experiences to the ongoing conflicts in Afghanistan, Iraq and Israel/Palestine. In these works, which play upon chance and coincidence, the hotel room is employed as a ‘found’ film set, where the architecture, furnishing and decoration become the means by which the filmmaker’s small adventures are linked to major world events.

Film (2): 

Gallivant
1996, UK, 100 min.
Director: Andrew Kötting

A 6,000-mile journey zig-zagging around the coast of Britain, Gallivant is both an experimental travelogue and an intensely personal story. The director, his grandmother and daughter (who has learning difficulties) set out to travel all the way around the coastline of mainland Britain. They have adventures, meet strange characters and explore fishing villages on their journey. Α documentation of the coast, through the eyes of real people, through meetings with genuine coastal residents, and through the places visited. The film is a snapshot of Britain today (complete with its past, which is part of today), and like a snapshot it may contain apparently irrelevant or unstructured elements; the background figure who wanders into the frame of a family group on the beach, may not be deliberately included, but their puzzled stare into the lens may transform and enhance the overall result. The viewer will have to confront their own assumptions about the way things are, rather than simply take on board the point of view of the film.

 

Monitor #4
Looking at tourism through the things it makes and leaves behind, the often hidden worlds behind the postcard. 

Film (1):

Mountain Trip
1999, Austria, 4 min.
Director: Siegfried A. Fruhauf

Mountain Trip is a cinematic myriorama constructed of hundreds of Austrian postcards, which reflect a country’s hackneyed trappings as no other medium can. The parameters of this experiment have been clearly defined: Two rows of postcards with mountain motifs (the cards in the upper row have been turned on their heads) are juxtaposed in such a way that mountains point to other mountains, the denouement of a massif butts up against a meadow, etc., resembling Chinese “cadavre exquis” cards which can be arranged to show an endless landscape. 

Film (2):

Fake Fruit Factory
1986, USA, 22 min.
Director: Chick Strand

While its title may suggest an industrial film tracing an assembly line process to market, this documentary is less interested in products than in the people who make them—the young Mexican women who create decorative papier-mâché fruit and vegetables for a small handicraft facility. The story is told almost entirely through close-ups. The women do things—knead plaster, tear paper, apply paint, hang ornaments to dry, prepare food, care for children, count bills. As they work, they gossip and complain about men. The camera follows their faces and hands and the things that they produce. The gringo boss and his cousin, seen largely through glimpses of their faces, look on.

Film (3): 

The Grand Bizarre
2019, USA, 60 min.
Director: Jodie Mack 

A postcard from an imploded society. Bringing mundane objects to life to interpret place through materials, The Grand Bizarre transcribes an experience of pattern, labor, and alien[-]nation[s]. A pattern parade in pop music pairs figure and landscape to trip through the topologies of codification. Following components, systems, and samples in a collage of textiles, tourism, language, and music, the film investigates recurring motifs and how their metamorphoses function within a global economy.

Newsletters:
Read and download SIFF’s newsletter in 
Greek & English