Western + Q&A with director Valeska Grisebach
Themes of masculinity, identity and cross-cultural understanding run through this superb new drama.
Dir Valeska Grisebach
With Meinhard Neumann, Reinhardt Wetrek, Syuleyman Alilov Letifov, Veneta Fragnova
A New Wave Films release
As with her likewise impressive Longing (2006), Grisebach worked in lengthy, close collaboration with non-professional actors to create a delicately nuanced, psychologically astute study of human relationships. Here, the interactions of a group of German construction workers, both with each other and with the inhabitants of a Bulgarian village where they’re employed for the summer, make for a wholly authentic, profoundly insightful account of masculinity, community and conflict. While the film – beautifully shot and performed throughout – often echoes the classic western, Grisebach is clearly more interested in life than in movie conventions; the remarkably gripping results ring wondrously true.
Geoff Andrew, Programmer-at-large