Saturday, November 5, 2016
11:00 am - 12:30 pm
University of Virginia
Newcomb Hall Theater
From the Sahara to Melilla, migrants relate how they narrowly escaped death, unlike their unfortunate travelling companions – who were literally and symbolically swallowed up by the border: from the Mediterranean Sea’s waters to the walls that states have built at great expense. Where are their bodies? Where are their graves? The “messengers” are those who have survived and who say their names.
The Messengers is the very first documentary on the subject and was shot during a four-year long investigation in Northern Africa by the two directors, Tura being a filmmaker,and Crouzillat initially a photographer. Out of hundreds of hours of interviews, the two directors edited the film with a respectful restraint and a formal simplicity which convey a sense of political and metaphysical scandal. The film was theatrically released in France in 2015 after being selected at Cinéma du réel in Paris and Etats généraux du documentaire in Lussas, and it has been screened in many festivals in Europe and in Northern and Central Africa.
“The focus is on how the unburied dead challenge European policy responses. The film shows that, in some ways, the notion of the frontier covers that of a common grave: a crack engulfing an unwanted humanity whose only relic seems to be the words of the ‘messengers’.” (Charlotte Garson)