Der sechste Kontinent, Dir. Benno Maggi - english version (OV)Swiss-German/Italian/Shona/English/Spanis, color, 16mm (commag.) and video Beta-SP, 90 min, 1992

The sixth continent

"The sixth continent" is made up of ten short stories about people who live far away from each other-as foreigners on all five continents of the earth. In Zimbabwe, Italy, Chile, Tonga in the South Pacific and Thailand. And Switzerland, the hub and pivot of them all. A few foreigners in Switzerland and some Swiss abroad-who do not know each other agreed to "get together" for a private cinematic storytelling. Sometimes they were so close that it was hard to tell who was at home and who was in "foreign parts" . . . "The sixth continent" has only a handful of inhabitants, but it embraces the whole world: with ten personal stories about people who have exchanged their homeland for a foreign country.

Alpen-Internat, Dir. Hans Liechti - German version (are there subtitled versions in french or english?) (OV) German, color, 16mm and video Beta-SP, 6 x 52 min, 1991

Lycˇe Alpin (Alpine Boarding School)

The focal point of this six-part serial is a class of pupils in their final year at an exclusive Swiss boarding school high above Lake Lucerne. The nine pupils, most of them sons and daughers of wealthy parents from all parts of the world, plan to rebel against what they consider to be the outdated and over-strict rules stipulated by Adele Bodmer, widow of the school's founder, and the English teacher Fritschi. The classmates believe they have found an accomplice in their fight for reform in the person of the young, openminded school director Catherine Bondi. But the young people's efforts are foiled by their own problems, their foolishness and their complicated love affairs.

Füürland 2, Dirs. Clemens Klopfenstein, Remo Legnazzi - Swiss-German version (are there subtitled versions in French or English?) (OV) Swiss-German, color, 35mm and 16mm (comopt.), 110 min, 1992

Berne, June 14, 1991: Swiss women on strike demonstrate against male domination in front of the Parliament building while the men inside celebrate Switzerland's 700th birthday in the company of their international colleagues. Max Rüdlinger finds himself in the direct line of fire. Once again he is trapped between two fronts: just back from Tierra del Fuego with his Brazilian wife, he is earning his living as a reporter for the local "Regenbogen" radio station. Armed with a microphone and huge bars of chocolate, he drifts through the hot summer street of the town by day and by night trying to interview female listeners for the radio. Max gets involved in women's stories, magic, music and gold. Ten years after "E nachtlang Füürland," we once again have the "vibes" of our 800-year-old city and its scene portrayed in lowest-budget and docu-fiction style.

Last supper, Dir. Robert Frank - English version (with French subtitles?) (OV) English, color, 16mm and 35mm blow-up, approx. 60 min, 1992

The main characters (lawyer - son - wife - oriental girl - actor - a colleague) are getting ready for a book-signing party given to honor the writer. The event plays in an empty lot in Harlem. Fragments of the writer's old video tapes will interrupt the footage prior to the party. The film follows the events which happen to the six characters as they go to - and return from - the party. Isolated - like fish in a bowl - the party is being watched by the neighborhood. While the black people have to deal with the practicallity of life, the party people are obsessed with their identity, their status, their success. But the writer himself never turns up. In the end we can understand the artist's fear and his doubts; that is the irony. . .of belonging to an "elite group of New Yorkers."

I was on Mars, Dir. Dani Levy - English version (with French subtitles?) (OV) English, color, 35mm, 86 min, 1991

The whole of Poland is dreaming about it. Half Poland is talking about it. Silva does it. Armed with a huge suitcase and no knowledge of English, she arrives at New York airport. She has abandoned her Polish village with intention of getting drunk on the luxury and glitter of the West. But it's not that easy. The few dollars she has saved slip through her fingers like sand, and she lets a wastrel called Alio pinch the rest. Within a few days she is destitute. She sells her suitcase and her belongings and buys a sleeping bag and a radio with which she hopes to be able to survive. She looks for Alio and finds his cousin Dave and stays hard on his geels. She wants her money back. Like an animal, she camps in front of the condemned house where the cousins live; cleans, and stays viciously good-natured. Until. . .until everything gets hopelessly mixed up.

Lumumba - La mort du proph¸te, Dir. Raoul Peck - French version (with english subtitles?) (OV) French, color and b/w, 16mm, 68 min, 1991

Thirty years after the murder of the first prime minister of the independent ex-Belgian Congo, no Zaire, Raoul Peck combines private associations with memories of journalists who were reporting from the Congo at the time. An essayistic portrait of the legendary Patrice Lumumba.

Hors saison, Dir. Daniel Schmid - French version (English subtitles?) (OV) French and German, color,35 mm, 90 min, 1992

Off Season

The scene of the action is a closed-down, dilapidated hotel in the Swiss mountains which has been lying empty for some some time. The hotel used to belong to the narrator's grandparents, and it was there that he was born and brought up. He visits the hotel for the last time with the intention of losing himself in memories connected with the old building. In a fictitious account of a childhood related by a youngster called Valentin whom the narraotor meets in the corridors of the abandoned hotel, people from the past emerge to tell their stories. The principle actors of a long-dead hotel culture appear and celebrate long-forgotten rituals. The narrative technique of the film is reminiscent of a game of billards in which one ball cannons off another and thereby changes its own course; in the same way, each new story triggers others which have a mutual influence on one another and become intertwined.

The Price of the Ticket, Dir. Karen Thorsen - English version (with French subtitles?) (OV) English, color, approx. 90 min, 1988

Documentary on the late James Baldwin, writer, expatriate extraordinaire and civil rights activist. Retraces this complex life via interviews with Baldwin and his friends and family interspersed with news documentary footage, including footage of Baldwin's stay in Switzerland upon which his essay, "Stranger in the Village," is based.

*All descriptions from the Swiss Film Center catalogue 1991/92, except "The Price of the Ticket"


The Beat Experience, Dir. John Carlin - english (OV)

Pull My Daisy, Dir. Robert Frank and Alfred Leslie


Videos by Renée Green

Camino Road (1994)

Culture Tour (1994)

Venue (1994)

"Thirty Minutes Out Of My Life Six Days A Week/'Seinfeld'" (1996)

Flow - {work-in-progress} (1996)