Archive of films The Settlement / Poselenije

2001, 77 min

Section: Documentary Films in Competition
Year: 2001


The outline of a village community emerges from the haze. The first person appears, walking in the landscape. Soon we are aware of others involved in various activities. Everything takes place at a slow rhythm. Gradually we realise that the villagers are actually patients at an institute for the mentally disturbed and that the rhythm and image of the film have been adapted to their ability to perceive their own existence and the surrounding world. The film is dominated by the voices of nature as well as by the hum and stir accompanying their work. This includes harvesting fields, working at a local sawmill, and property maintenance. We see the wards in the cafeteria, resting, and waiting for their spa treatment. Calm and contentment reign. At the end of the film, using tight close-ups and accompanied by the sound of Ave Maria, the camera pans across the faces of several of the protagonists. The “otherworldliness” in their eyes is completely offset by a sense of their intrinsic harmony with our common mother – nature.

About the director

Sergei Loznitsa graduated from the Kiev Polytechnic University (faculty of applied mathematics). He was working at the University of Cybernetics (involved in specialist systems and artificial intelligence) during the years 1987 – 1991. He entered the State University of Cinematography in 1991 and graduated from it in 1996. Filmography: Today We Will Build a House (1996), Life, Autumn (1998), The Halt (2000).

About the film

Color, 35 mm

Section: Documentary Films in Competition
Director: Sergei Loznitsa
Screenplay: Sergei Loznitsa
Dir. of Photography: Pavel Kostomarov
Music: Julio Cochini
Editor: Sergei Loznitsa
Producer: Viacheslav Telnov
Production: St. Petersburg Documentary Film Studio

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