Lacuesta sees Double in San Sebastian
by Boyd van Hoeij
Catalan director Isaki Lacuesta brought not one but two films to the 59th edition of the San Sebastian Film Festival, which continues through Saturday in the Basque beach resort town on the Atlantic.
The documentary filmmaker’s superb 2006 effort The Legend of Time, inspired by the life of Flamenco singer Camarón, premiered in competition at the Rotterdam International Film Festival that year, while his All Night Long, about Ava Gardner, premiered in San Sebastian last year.
As with these two films, his latest project is again a documentary-fiction hybrid inspired by the life of an artist, in this case the French painter, vagrant and voyager Francois Augieras, who travelled to and worked in Africa.
For this large-scale, two-film project, Lacuesta has collaborated with another talent, the renowned visual artist Miquel Barcelo.
Their joint venture encompasses two films, both shot in Mali: The Double Steps [+see also:
film profile], a fictional biography of Augieras, which premiered in competition in San Sebastian, and The Clay Diaries, which focuses more closely on a workshop that Barcelo gave in the African country. The latter film premiered in the Zabaltegi Specials section.
Though undoubtedly poetic on both the visual and narrative levels, the film, which, among other things mixes into the story a local young boy also called Francois Augieras and how he’s rejected by his uncle (who also narrates), is at times so mystical it can only work really on a poetic level.
The Double Steps, which was shot on 35mm, and The Clay Diaries, which was shot on HDcam, are produced by Luisa Matienzo for Tusitala. Steps was co-produced by Bord Cadre Films. Avalon Productions will release the film locally.
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