María Onis
Argentina | 2019 | 85 min
World premiere
Language : Spanish
Subtitles : English, French

An anthropology student and her companion, a film student, want to direct a documentary about a community of hunter-gatherers in Argentina. The difference between the well-off young urbanites and the filmed subjects appears in the first shooting moments already: the sound recorder obsessed with the loss of his Swiss Army knife, incongruous yoga sessions in the middle of a miserable village, tedious explanations causing perplexity and quiet irony on the part of the Wichi, whose full collaboration is still required for this project that intends to ‘increase the visibility’ of a traditional way of life threatened by land disputes... During the grading of the film's rushes, fundamental disagreements about what should be cut or kept, in the name of aesthetics or scientific research, appear, with discussions before the screen turning purely and simply to the couple quarrelling. With this small summary of the breakdown of the ethnographical gesture, María Onis uses humour to consider the impossibility of filming a reality other than one’s own without an irreducible part of exoticism being projected into the relationship between the filmer and the filmed. 

Emmanuel Chicon


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