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FoR Shorts #1


A programme of three short films followed by a Q&A with directors Pedro Peralta (Ascension) and Rafael Ramírez (Amundsen’s Dogs) and producer Michał Białożej (Zhalanash). The Q&A will be hosted by film journalist and critic at large Wendy Ide.


Dir. Pedro Peralta, Portugal, 2016, 18 mins

At dawn a group of peasants tries to rescue the body of a young man from the inside of a well. At the centre of it all, a mother anxiously awaits her son’s salvation, until finally his body emerges from the earth. Part of influential Portuguese film collective TerraTreme, director Pedro Peralta plays with the language of the spiritual, only to complicate this frame. Ultimately, there is no transcendence here; only the natural landscape endures: unpredictable, generative, ongoing.

'The term sublime is not overused, Ascensão is an invitation to a rare journey.'

- Fabien Gaffez, La Semaine de la Critique



Dir. Rafael Ramirez, Cuba, 2017, 27 mins

Drawing on the story of Arctic explorer Ronald Amundsen, this film explores a landscape which seems to defy human comprehension and classification. Interweaving footage of frozen wildernesses, the stories of those who did not survive their expeditions and the words of writers inspired by the Arctic, the film meditates on the creative force of this vast landscape’s enduring strangeness, reflecting on our fascination with those worlds we cannot know.

'Rafael Ramírez connects the avant-garde and the political in this intertwining of fiction and documentary' - Link



Dir. Marcin Sauter, Poland, 2017, 40 mins

Once one of the world’s biggest lakes, today the Aral Sea has all but vanished. This haunting, beautifully-shot short focuses on what remains in an area that was once flourishing. Fishing boats erode in the dusty desert, a lonely camel wanders an empty street, and an old woman quietly stares at her birthday cake. Empty and dry, the land stretches out as far as the eye can see.

'Zhalanash is a haven where modernity is dominated by tradition'

IDFA 2017 Award for Best Short Documentary