Filmed in Amsterdam during the 2012 Int’l Documentary Film Festival, Ondi profiles several of the most stunning films to showcase this year.
First we speak with Erik Gandini, IDFA juror and director of the striking examination of the link between Bersluconni, sexually charged media and government in Italy, Videocracy.
Then with Yung Chang who illuminated the still-nascent (and very American) sport of boxing in China in China Heavyweight.
Finally, Ondi sits down with Nadav Schirman whose film, In the Dark Room, gives a full length voice to the fascinating character of Magdalena Koop. Ms. Koop, who was the wife of infamous terrorist Carlos the Jackal, has featured in a few films before, but only as a bit player until now. Nadav even shares with us a scene that did not make it into the final cut of the film. Enjoy!
Watch new episodes of BYOD live each week on Tuesdays at noon on TheLip.TV, or tune in for the archived replay starting here on the following Thursday.
BYOD is hosted by Ondi Timoner, director of “DIG!,” “JOIN US” and “WE LIVE IN PUBLIC,” and has the rare distinction of winning the Grand Jury Prize at Sundance twice. Each week the show explores a different documentary filmmaker or aspect of filmmaking, with special guests and a live Q&A– diving deep into creative process and the business realities of producing and distributing films. Ondi shares her insider views, opinions, and personal stories, welcoming audience participation. BYOD aims to entertain, inform, and elevate documentaries in general by bringing attention to films and film makers that deserve exposure.
Surplus – Terrorized Into Being Consumers
Surplus: Terrorized into Being Consumers from 2003 is a film odyssey about the destructive sides of consumer culture, shot in Sweden, USA, China, India, Cuba, Hungary and Italy under a three years period and described as “a global doomsday satire set to music”.
Erik Gandini’s 2009 feature length documentary Videocracy is so far Erik Gandini’s most successful film. The film, produced and directed by Gandini, explores how Italy has been pushed to the brink of moral melt-down under the rule of Silvio Berlusconi.
Chinese-Canadian director Yung Chang made his debut in 2007 with the award-winning documentary Up the Yangtze, about the construction of a huge dam that forced two million people to move. China Heavyweight also takes place in modern China. In the province of Sichuan, former professional boxer Qi Moxiang scouts talented young boxers from poor rural areas. If these children are prepared to go to the extreme, they may one day represent their country. A successful boxing career can be a way of escaping poverty. This documentary follows Qi and two of his pupils in their dream of becoming champs. Their goal requires ironclad discipline and endless perseverance, which not everyone has. The two boys face many obstacles on their uneven teenage path, and have to make some tough decisions: to one day represent their country at the Olympics as an amateur boxer, or go for the financial rewards of a professional career. In the meantime, Qi is increasingly tempted to have just one more big fight himself. Can he live up to expectations? China Heayweight is a beautifully filmed observational documentary about the future of a very Western sport in a country in which, for young people, the collective no longer automatically comes first.
In the Dark Room
Magdalena Kopp was married to the most wanted terrorist in the world: Carlos the Jackal. Moving from a small conservative Bavarian town to the revolutionary zeitgeist of 1960s Berlin, she was attracted to the radical leftist circles of Frankfurt. This is how she came in contact with the Venezuelan “professional revolutionary” Carlos, who was fast becoming the world’s first celebrity terrorist. She trained with Palestinian freedom fighters and fought alongside their national heroes. She followed Carlos into dangerous international intrigues, in a world of nebulous secret services and shady governments, and gave birth to their daughter Rosa. By the time Magdalena realized that the political ideals were long gone, and only a hunger for power lurked behind their violent struggle, she was already too deeply involved. In the Dark Room paints the story of international terrorism on the canvas of this family drama. For some Carlos is a revolutionary, for others a murderer, but for Rosa he’s a father – one she has not seen since she was five years old and only knows through the media. While Carlos stands trial in Paris, mother and daughter take a courageous and emotional journey beyond the shadows of his myth.
00:01 Welcome to IDFA 2012, pt. 2!
00:28 Erik Gandini of Videocracy and Surplus: Terrorized into Being Consumers.
20:45 Yung Chang of China Heavyweight.
31:11 Nadav Schirman of In The Dark Room