Laila Pakalniņa
Latvia | 2016 | 20 min
World premiere
Language : no dialogue

Two things, well known to Visions du Réel audience, form the terms of a perfect contradiction. The inhabitants of Latvia genuinely love alpine ski- ing, but their territory consists only of flat plains. We found out all about it in Snow (VdR 2012) by Laila Pakalnina, who today offers us a second chapter on the subject of this passion for verticality. Although there are no mountains in Latvia, it does have the widest waterfall in Europe. Starting at this site (it is often in this manner that Pakalnina’s films take shape), the filmmaker enters a universal dimension, that of tourism. Because tourists are the same everywhere. Silent, they populate this lovely documentary comedy, crossing spaces, striking poses, immortalising themselves in photos. Pakalnina makes no comment. She places her camera, composes the frame, and records the sound. The people and the editing will do the rest. In this way, the Latvian filmmaker resolves the contradiction of her fellow citizens: in filming the horizontality of the waterfall, she descends to the heart -funny, tender and fragile – of humanity.
Luciano Barisone


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