2015 Paris Ethnografilm Festival

A Better Road by Juan Aguilar Video (35 min. 22 sec), Luxembourg: For centuries, Tibetan nomads have coped with all kinds of difficulties on the high grasslands of the former Tibetan Kham province. Now they are facing a completely new challenge: modern education. The nomads all agree that their children have to attend school that they deserve a better education than they themselves could have, that they need a modern education to come to terms in our changing world.

To Live in This World by Michael Wesch Video (8 min. 39 sec.), USA: Eleven students moved into a continuing care retirement community for one semester. After four months and 100+ hours of interviews, the students found themselves fully immersed in the lives and stories of the residents. This short compresses many lifetimes into a 7 minute short exploring meaning and significance throughout the life cycle.

Cutting the Cord (Lutu Chuktiwa) by David Shorter Video (21 min. 8 sec.), USA: This ethnographic film portrays the Lutu Chuktiwa (Cutting the Cord) ceremony of the Yoeme (Yaqui) Indians. In 2006, David Shorter joined the family of Ignacio Sombratuka’u as they held the all night lutu pahko, which takes place one year after someone’s death in order to release the family and community from mourning. Along with indigenous dancing and Catholic prayers, mourners have a cord tied around their neck in the first part of the evening; and these cords are then cut and burned in the early morning.

Macholand (Mardistan) by Harjant Gill Video (19 min. 17 sec.), India: Mardistan (Macholand) is an exploration of Indian manhood articulated through the voices of four men from different generations and backgrounds. A middle-aged writer trying to make sense of the physical and sexual abuse he witnessed studying in an elite military academy, a Sikh father of twin daughters resisting the pressure to produce a son, a young 20-year-old college student looking for a girlfriend with whom he can lose his virginity, and a working-class gay activist coming out to his wife after twenty years of marriage.

Cut Off By Mountains by by Tamara Sushko Video (39 min. 53 sec.), Tofa, Siberian: Swedish-British co-production “Cut off by mountains, rivers connected with” intimate and poetic story that brings the viewer a harmonious reality that could disappear quickly, which is especially valuable because they rarely have occasion to see in the international film circuits on the problems of Russia, a country in which the action unfolds.

Out of Focus (Fuero de Foco) by Adrian Arce Video (36 min. 16 sec.), Mexico: This is a collaborative documentary about arts, culture and everyday life inside a prison for minors. It was shot during a photography and video workshop with young inmates at the Juvenile Community for Specialized Treatment in San Fernando, Mexico City.

Kora by Jorge Carvalho Video (15 min. 26 sec.), Portuguese: In the cataloging card at the Lisbon National Museum of Ethnology the unusual object is summed up but we can’t hear his sound and all of its history, mysticism, geographic quarrels and the ethnographic journey of one of the most important musical instruments of West Africa. The Kora is as important to this African region as it is unknown by us, westerns.