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The Day of the Sparrow

Philip Scheffner
Germany, 2010
Production : Pong film GmbH, Blinker Filmproduktion, Worklights Media Production
English, German
English, French


Quels rapports y a-t-il entre un moineau, un film de vacances et les opérations militaires menées par l’Allemagne en Afghanistan ?

Avec le soutien du CNC-Images de la culture

Tënk's film review

Dans un film unique en son genre, Philip Scheffner bouleverse les hiérarchies habituellement acceptées en mettant sur le même plan la mort d’un moineau et celle d’un homme. Ce rapprochement constitue le point de départ d’une sorte d’enquête inattendue et souvent silencieuse, qui pointe le caractère normatif et relatif de toute vision du monde. Le parti-pris d’aborder l’activité militaire allemande à travers le motif aviaire assume son caractère arbitraire, ce qui ne l’empêche pas d’être fructueux : en plaçant au cœur du cadre des animaux si familiers que nous ne les voyons plus, le cinéaste rend sensible une violence faussement lointaine, trop souvent minorée.

Olivia Cooper Hadjian
Membre du comité de sélection de Cinéma du réel,
critique pour Critikat

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Philip Scheffner

"Born in 1966 in Homburg in Saarland, Philip Scheffner moved to Berlin in 1986, where he works as an artist and filmmaker. A unique voice in Germany’s contemporary documentary cinema, throughout his career he has been questioning the construction of “truths”, whether media truths (“Day of the Sparrow”, “Harvarie”), judicial truths (“Revision”), or historical or anthropological truths (“The Halfmoon Files”). Often based on diverse brief news items, his work takes a step back from his themes to examine how they are reported to us. But while he scrutinises how the authorities producing the truth function, his films are also remarkable for their profoundly human approach in which the protagonists are treated as equals and the shooting becomes a chance to engage in dialogue. Scheffner never yields to the temptation of moral certainty, and casting doubt is the driving force behind his investigations, taking a non-dogmatic stance that involves ethics and lends his films a discrete yet inescapably political dimension. His feature films have been presented at the Berlin Film Festival’s Forum, the Yamagata Film Festival and New York’s Museum of the Moving Image, among others."

Other films in the collection: Essays