Being There

We all know that prison psychiatric units exist, but we rarely consider the paradoxical nature of such institutions. A prison is, in essence, a type of punishment targeted at psyche. Here – individuals punished and isolated become patients, and society tries to alleviate them of their mental suffering. To what degree is this even possible in prison? Régis Sauder doesn't pose such questions in the abstract. He doesn't consider the line between criminal responsibility and protecting society, examining instead the psychiatrists working at the Baumettes prison in Marseille, to whom he listens very carefully. How does Sophie, who has ten years of experience, feel about working in a prison that pretends to be a clinic? Her bitter, often poetic reflections read straight into the camera create unique commentary here, in a film that is stylistically experimental while also maintaining strict realism in documenting the daily work of the female therapists. The patients remain out of the frame, while the camera focuses on the faces of the doctors and psychotherapists. The result is a kind of portrait of "empathy in action" (The Hollywood Reporter), and Sauder's film, without sacrificing any of its raw impact, exudes warmth like the indomitable Aude, one of the psychiatrists who always manages a smile despite the terrifying atmosphere. The carefully thought-out and beautifully edited images by Jérôme Olivier and Sauder himself add to the rich palette of emotions and meaning of the film, which is also not short on black humor.(mn)
Being There / Być tam / Être là
94 ' , 2012 France director: Régis Sauder / cinematography: Jérôme Olivier / editing: Florent Mangeot / production: Shellac Sud

Screenings

Muranów 2012-12-08 18:30
Iluzjon/Stolica 2012-12-15 15:15
Iluzjon/Mała Czarna 2012-12-16 17:00
Régis Sauder
2010 Nous, princesses de Clèves
2010 Le Jardin de la Louve
2009 Je t’emmène à Alger
2009 Mon Shanghai
2008 L’année prochaine à Jérusalem
2007 Lotissement, le temps des illusions
2006 Le Lotissement, à la recherche du bonheur
2005 Maux d’adolescents
2004 Avortement, une liberté fragile
2003 Passeurs de vie

2012 RIDM Montreal

2012 FIDMarseille