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CPH:DOX 2021 Next:Wave Award

EXCLUSIVE: Trailer for CPH:DOX title So Foul a Sky

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- This upcoming road movie, directed by Álvaro F Pulpeiro and filmed in Venezuela, is a coproduction between Colombia, the UK and Spain

EXCLUSIVE: Trailer for CPH:DOX title So Foul a Sky
So Foul a Sky by Álvaro F Pulpeiro

New documentary So Foul a Sky [+see also:
trailer
film profile
]
 will join the line-up for the 18th edition of the CPH:DOX festival, having been selected for the Next:Wave section, dedicated to emerging talent. Its world premiere is set to take place on 24 April. The second full-length feature from Álvaro F Pulpeiro draws inspiration from Joseph Conrad’s acclaimed 1904 novel, Nostromo, (where Francis Ford Coppola first got the idea for Apocalypse Now), adapting it to the situation facing present-day Venezuela: a country on the brink of economic, political and symbolic collapse.

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Written by Pulpeiro himself, in the director’s own words the film “aspires to find a place as a lyrical piece that alternates between gritty realism and radical intimacy. We turn the spotlight on the figure of the pariah, stripped of national identity and the rights that come with citizenship, through a series of encounters with people who, whether consciously or unconsciously, have turned their backs to that which will force them to pick a side in the conflict devastating the country. In the company of pilgrims and pirates, we travel through lands symbolically abandoned by a (possibly fictionalised) bloodline, whose exile seems to have led them to a true home.” He adds that the documentary serves as “a meditation on the fragile, antagonistic relationship between citizen and state in a context where the latter no longer offers meaning, direction and identity.”

According to the film’s synopsis, it will take us on a journey from the shadow of the gargantuan oil refineries, which take on the appearance of vast chrome temples, through a series of diverse landscapes in the borderlands of Venezuela: the world’s first petro-state, ravaged by South America’s worst political and humanitarian crisis in the twenty-first century. Under stormy skies, listless soldiers prowl the Caribbean Sea for migrants fleeing desolate villages on the border with Brazil, while smugglers extract the dregs of the few remaining oil barrels before creeping their way across the hostile desert of La Guajira. Meanwhile, we listen in to absurdly contradictory news coverage of the political conflict, courtesy of a radio broadcast from the distant capital. So Foul a Sky is a film that introduces us to pilgrims and pirates, orphans of a land they have adopted as their own, without the need for flags or anthems — as anarchic as the storm that threatens to break the limbo in which they are suspended.

Spanish-born Álvaro F Pulpeiro is a writer, filmmaker and photographer. He graduated from the Architectural Association’s School of Architecture in 2015, going on to direct two short films (Sol Mihi Semper lucet and La jovencita no envejece, se descompone) and two features: Nocturno: Ghosts of the Sea in Port, presented at the Gijón International Film Festival in 2017 and the Edinburgh International Film Festival in 2018, and his latest film, recently selected for CPH:DOX.

So Foul a Sky is a coproduction between Colombia (Cámara Lenta), Spain (A Cuarta Parede Films) and the UK (Insight TWI). Canadian agency Syndicado is handling international sales.

Here is the trailer:

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(Translated from Spanish)

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