Commentary

"Hi, I´m Robert Cambrinus, the director of this film!" This friendly greeting can be heard on the soundtrack, then it is immediately swept up by the film´s own images: The wooden lion will play an important role later.Cambrinus pays no attention to the film´s title, Commentary, as he takes a look at the next scene as in the audio commentary on a DVD: He intended to allude to Arabian deserts, shooting took hours, but the camera was, unfortunately, "a little shaky". In addition, formations that resemble dunes turn out to be wrinkles in a vaguely sand-colored blanket.
With a hefty portion of irony Cambrinus comments on his short film The Good Muslim, about a Muslim man who has emigrated to England, where he suffers from the pressures of life. The narrative literally overlays the images in a way that is often equally illuminating and disillusioning. Vitally important decisions are made on the basis of shockingly banal circumstances during shooting: The ending was intended to be quite different, but a technical problem arose during the last scene, and the use of a certain piece of music is purely coincidental - the editor chose it because of the title. Seemingly anecdotal digressions and doubts are simply left hanging, while a number of details concerning the story of the film´s creation and the backstory are reflected in the film. Irritatingly enough, they are two wholly different things. Deconstruction and (over-)interpretation merge: What is left of the images beyond set paths (thematic, technical, autobiographical, etc.) on the soundtrack? This is a clever game of deception and commentary on a contemporary viewing regime which has, for the most part, rarely been dealt with in cinematography: As if in an effective final point, Cambrinus promises a version of the film without audio commentary as a DVD extra. The remaining credits are accompanied by the characteristic embarrassed sighing that´s audible on DVD soundtracks when the person doing the commentary has nothing more to say.

(Christoph Huber)


A fiction film is created: During shooting of scenes about the conflicts of identity experienced by a Muslim who has settled in England, the filmmaker comments on the means employed in fiction⎯cinematic technique´s art of illusion, everyday places being transformed into film locations, the actors´ staged actions. In a subversive and amusing way the commentary swells into a deconstruction of the images on screen that eventually become settled in our heads.

(Verena Teissl)

Orig. Title
Commentary
Year
2009
Countries
Austria, United Kingdom
Duration
15 min
Director
Robert Cambrinus
Category
Short fiction
Orig. Language
english
Downloads
Commentary (Image)
Credits
Director
Robert Cambrinus
Script
Robert Cambrinus
Cinematography
Cheung Jun Keung
Editing
Nathan Cubitt
Actor/Actress
Menis Yousry, Alice Brickwood, Zmira Wicking
Production
Concept Films
Executive Producer
Robert Cambrinus
Available Formats
Digital Betacam PAL (Distribution Copy)
Format of Picture
16:9 Letterbox
Format of Sound
Dolby Surround
Picture Frequency
25 fps
Format of Color
colour
Digital File (prores, h264) (Distribution Copy)
Format of Picture
16:9
Format of Sound
stereo
Picture Frequency
25 fps
Format of Color
colour
Festivals (Selection)
2009
Viennale - Vienna Int. Film Festival
Ghent -Flanders International Film Festival
Warsaw Int. Film Festival
2010
Graz - Diagonale, Festival des österreichischen Films
Wien - VIS Vienna Independent Shorts (Jury Special Mention & RAY Audience Award)
Sofia - FILMINI Int. Short Film Festival
2011
Bamberg - Kurzfilmtage
Ghent - COURTisane Festival
Osnabrück - EMAF - European Media Art Festival
Bergamo - Cortopotere Int. Film Festival