SOMA, 10min., UK
Directed by Arturo Bandinelli
SOMA is an experimental film that uses movement and dance as its primary medium for story-telling. A contemporary myth on the genesis of the human body, the piece unfolds in two parallel dimensions: an infinite black hole where entities exist outside linear space and time; and a labyrinthine house where an uncanny gathering is taking place. As the free-associative, dreamlike narrative unfolds, different characters go through visceral experiences of pleasure, enchantment, pain and death.
Get to know producer Klaudia Wittmann:
1. What motivated you to make this film?
As a collective, we had been asking the question 'What is a Body?' for some time, since 2019. During that time, we wondered about the material of the body, the flesh, its relation to the psyche, emotional life, and the image of the body. This coincided with personal experiences of loss and illness which framed our creative questions about the body, and motivated us to create work around it and make the film. (Klaudia Wittmann)
2. From the idea to the finished product, how long did it take for you to make this film?
3/4 years. (Klaudia Wittmann)
3. How would you describe your film in two words!?
Uncanny, Fragmented. (Klaudia Wittmann)
4. What was the biggest obstacle you faced in completing this film?
Besides the raising of the funds, which is always a challenge, the hardest thing was to find the right balance between the different genres we wanted to combine, from experimental to dance, from video art to horror. Only thanks to an incredible team of collaborators could we make it all work together in what I hope is an organic manner.
5. What were your initial reactions when watching the audience talking about your film in the feedback video?
It felt the audience was able to consistently articulate some of the themes explored in the film and its overall feel, tracking arcs of the non-linear narrative and generously highlighting the film's strength in its direction, movement and cinematography. It was great to hear varied voices and how attentively they engaged with our work.
6. When did you realize that you wanted to make films?
I had the idea of becoming a filmmaker since I was about 6 or 7, but I started to seriously consider it as my profession after high school.
7. What film have you seen the most in your life?
I think it has to be Bernardo Bertolucci's The Conformist (1970), an absolute masterpiece of modernist cinema.
8. What other elements of the festival experience can we and other festivals implement to satisfy you and help you further your filmmaking career?
I think Experimental Dance & Music Film Festival is really great in terms of the different elements that it provides filmmakers with. For us, we really care about the film being seen by as many people as possible. The other thing, of course, is that we hope to make more work in the future, so the promotional and networking opportunities that festivals can offer are invaluable. The final aspect that would be amazing would be if festivals could provide prize money so award winners have the chance to fund their next projects, which is always such a huge challenge! (Klaudia Wittmann)
9. You submitted to the festival via FilmFreeway. How has your experiences been working on the festival platform site?
Very good, very easy! (Klaudia Wittmann)
10. What is your favorite meal?
Pasta with tomato sauce - I can't get enough! (Klaudia Wittmann)
11. What is next for you? A new film?
Yes - we are working towards two new projects. One is an immersive live performance piece which is based on SOMA; the other one is a film about abuse in women's gymnastics. This one will be a drama, and will continue to explore questions of the body. (Klaudia Wittmann)