Open City Documentary Festival, Short Films
Various / 2017 / China/United Kingdom / 90'

It is an inherent desire to want to establish order in what is ultimately a disorderly universe; the characters in these films are forced to come to terms with their inability to maintain control. Mortality and art coalesce as artists and musicians confront the passing of time and their powerlessness in the face of a constantly changing world.


The Watchmaker
Marie-Cécile Embleton | 2016 | UK | 9’
A poetic portrait of an Iranian watchmaker, whose philosophical musings on craft invite us to reflect on how we engage with time in a fast-paced world. Moving between his colourful pared-down home and the streets and windswept marshes of East London, we discover the horologist’s ascetic and beautiful private world.

Everything Lives: Looking at the Artist as Father
Huw Wahl | 2016 | UK | 24’
My father tells me that time travels through him, before him and after him, as if he were on a platform watching a train slowly passing by. It seems that reaching a milestone in age (ninety) has brought up questions of 'time left'. But how can there be an end to anything as infinite as your own time? Part observation, part performance, and a collaboration between father and son, Everything Lives looks at how Ken experiences time in the barns where he works; the time he spends playing, the time unique to painting or the time it takes to build a whole life. This short 16mm film is an intimate series of surfaces, sounds and events that together form their subject: the artist as father.

Accordion Class
Zuqiang Peng | 2016 | China | 23’
Accordion Class explores the under-examined history of the accordion and its legacy in China, as the only permitted western instrument during the cultural revolution. Since then, the accordion’s popularity and influence has risen and fallen over half a century. Looking at accordion classes and competitions today, the film presents how the instrument is taught, performed and received by a younger generation in the city of Changsha. Through a series of observational shots of classes, competition and recital, the film looks at how a legacy of collectivism is practiced and educated between generations. The accordion, as an instrument with a rarely known historical significance, can be seen as a lens through which to see how this legacy continues.

The Adventures of an Aspiring Rockstar
Sam Oldmeadow | 2016 | UK | 34'
From a very young age, Cosimo Mauro dreamt about being a Rockstar. It was a dream he would briefly realise in his twenties but what he could not have predicted was that at age forty he would be diagnosed with Parkinson’s disease. On the surface the film provides an intimate window into the life of a man struggling psychologically and physically with a debilitating illness but if we look closer we soon understand that Parkinson’s is just an exaggeration of the universal themes of ageing and the comparisons we are eventually forced to make between a life we used to dream about and the lives we actually lead.


Total running time 90’


SHORTS: Fragments of the Infinite

Friday, September 8, 2017 - 20:30
£13.10, concs £12.10
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