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(Re)Writing history

Modern history is written with pictures. Sometimes these are treacherous (like the ones shot in the Warsaw ghetto) and filmmakers have to decode the archives and look beneath the surface. Sometimes, pictures are helpful: watching Romanian footage shot right after the revolution is archeology for the mind. We have probably forgotten ourselves. As we have forgotten how a whole generation, living a cheval between communism and capitalism, made this spectacular leap. Or was it a fall?
There are many other ways in which documentaries deal with our recent past: Patricio Guzman digs up for lost victims, hidden under the sand of the Atacama Desert and scrutinizes the skies above for an answer. In Cambodia, filmmakers track those responsible for horrors. So to speak, horror receives an identity. That’s already something, it’s almost justice. We wish we had in Romania a family album of the kind.


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