Pure, minimalist film in documentary style by the talented Alonso. A day in the life of a simple Argentine woodcutter on the pampas.
Simplicity is the most important characteristic of Lisandro Alonso’s disarming feature début, filming a day in the life of the young Argentine woodcutter Misael.Alonso: ‘I often saw Misael in the pampas and I thought that his isolated way of life in the country reflected the way a person feels in the city. Misael is not a professional actor, he doesn’t know what an actor is and has never been to the movies. He is a woodcutter who decided to work a bit as an actor in Freedom. To write the screenplay, I observed Misael’s life and marked the different moments of his daily routines. Writing the script was structuring the way Misael organized his day. (…) I chose not to show the extraordinary or spectacular things that happen every two, three or five years in one’s life, such as having a child, a serious accident or having something unexpected happen. One lives half of his life in a routine that no one notices. I wanted to record those minimal moments so that, upon seeing them, one may rethink what one is doing with his own life. The film does not attempt to simply reflect Misael’s experiences, but rather relate his life with other experiences those of the spectators and mine, because I am someone who leads a completely different life in the city. Nevertheless, if I had filmed a day in my life, it would have been the same as Freedom.’ –IFFR
Born in Buenos Aires in 1975, Lisandro Alonso studied at the Universidad del Cine (FUC) and co-directed in 1995 with Catriel Vildosola his first short film Dos en la Vereda (1995). After working as assistant sound engineer in many short films and a few features and as assistant director of Nicolas Sarquis for his film Sobre la Tierra, Lisandro Alonso returned to directing, making his first feature. In 2003 he founded 4L, a production company based in Buenos Aires, to produce his own films. Lisandro Alonso’s first feature La Libertad (2001) was chosen for the Festival de Cannes (Un Certain Regard). His most recent productions, Los Muertos (2004) and Fantasma (2006), were also invited to Cannes, premiering in the Director’s Fortnight. —The Match Factory
Above: Mika Rottenberg’s Cheese. Photo by Galerie Laurent Godin. This is the first of two reports on the 56th Robert Flaherty Seminar. Since