FIVE MOMENTS, 19min,. UK, Musical
Directed by Magdalena Maria Herfurtner
The film explores grief by bringing five distinctive moments in a woman’s journey to life as she tries to cope with losing her partner. We follow Joan as she remembers, faces her feelings of emptiness and isolation and confronts her anger and pain - until she finally breaks free, if not from her grief, then at least from being stuck in what is no more.
When we lose a loved one, the impact of such an event - the shock, the pain, the sorrow - can feel unbearable.
From my own personal experience, I know that time starts to move at a different pace. Short moments become seemingly endless, long stretches of time merge together or break away.
And it’s often the little things that set us off, the mundane moments that suddenly trigger our sorrow, re-igniting memories we'd thought were buried and forgotten.
'Five Moments' explores this grief by bringing five distinctive moments in a woman’s journey to life, as she tries to cope with losing her partner. We follow Joan as she remembers, faces her feelings of emptiness and isolation and confronts her anger and pain - until she finally breaks free, if not from her grief, then at least from being stuck in what is no more.
This project merges film, classical and contemporary music elements. Our goal - beyond our artistic endeavours and aspirations - is therefore to inspire film lovers to discover the world of classical music, and music lovers to explore the universe of experimental filmmaking. The best of both worlds creates an intense audio-visual experience that will hopefully spark or rekindle the raw and intuitive curiosity in our audience.
The themes in this film are topics very close to my heart. 'Five Moments' has been created and shot during the pandemic - grief and loss have been constant companions for many people during this time. The feeling of being isolated, deserted, alone - we all can empathize with these states of mind, now more than ever. We hope this film will bring hope and a sense of companionship to people who have had similar experiences, that it can make them feel both understood and comforted as they follow our main character’s journey.
NOTE ON SUBTITLES:
We intentionally decided against subtitles for this film. Despite the fact that four out of the five songs featured in the film are in German, these songs are not to be seen as the lead character's monologue but rather as an expression of their emotional state. Therefore, the individual words matter less than the overall feeling conveyed by the music and images, and we found subtitles to be distracting rather than contributing to the experience. You can find the lyrics and their translation in the attached PDF.
Get to know the filmmaker:
1. What motivated you to make this film?
When we lose a loved one, the impact of such an event - the shock, the pain, the sorrow - can feel unbearable. And it's often the little things that set us off: the memories that get triggered when we get back to our daily lives, when we are processing what has happened. I wanted to make a film about these moments, and try to express the emotional inner state of the character through music.
2. From the idea to the finished product, how long did it take for you to make this film?
It took exactly a year from the moment I began writing it to the completion of post-production.
3. How would you describe your film in two words!?
4. What was the biggest obstacle you faced in completing this film?
We recorded some of the music/singing live on set. The authenticity this created on the performance side of things was really important to us but it certainly complicated the preparation and shoot, as well as music editing afterwards.
5. What were your initial reactions when watching the audience talking about your film in the feedback video?
It was very emotional for me. Hearing people's thoughts - seeing the impact our film had had on them - was wonderful.
6. When did you realize that you wanted to make films?
About 10 years ago. It started with making music videos and my love for cult classics like Alien, Rosemary's Baby and Silence of the Lambs.
7. What film have you seen the most in your life?
I have a thing for romantic comedies from the 90ies and early 2000s. There are films within that era/genre I must've seen 20 times. Also - the Lord of the Rings trilogy which I've watched every year for a while now.
8. What other elements of the festival experience can we and other festivals implement to satisfy you and help you further your filmmaking career?
The audience feedback is a wonderful idea. Anything that connects filmmakers with their audiences is just so helpful and rewarding.
9. You submitted to the festival via FilmFreeway. How has your experiences been working on the festival platform site?
I quite enjoy working from the platform. It's nice to have (almost) everything in one place as opposed to having to submit assets over and over again. Useful also to see people's reviews and feedback on a festival.
10. What is your favorite meal?
Pecan pie is high on the list at the moment.
11. What is next for you? A new film?
I'm working on a couple of short films and a feature at the moment. I'm also in the process of composing/recording soundtracks for a few films, and I regularly release new songs for my music project Madil Hardis.