Director: Tina Gharavi
England, 2000, 24 min
Sales:Marta Sanchez - Women Make Movies - 462 Broadway Suite 500WS New York, NY 10013 - T: 212-925-0606 - F: 212-925-1952
An experimental documentary which has at its heart a poignant character study of a 17 year-old lesbian living in Newcastle, England, Closer innovatively explores the process of documentary filmmaking and boldly challenges traditional forms of storytelling. Produced without a script and in close collaboration with the subject, Annelise Rodger, the filmmaker presents a hypnotizing array of montages and fictive sequences to introduce the day-to-day happenings of this extraordinary person. From the streets of Newcastle - where we find Annelise speaking frankly to the camera about her experiences as a young lesbian - to the emotionally charged reenactment of her coming out to her mother, this highly original film provides a rare auto-portrait where fiction and documentary collide. In the end what emerges is not only a remarkable encounter with a young woman, but also a story that has broader implications about being young, being at the cusp of adulthood, and finding one's identity. A Bridge & Tunnel Production.
About the director
Gharavi is a filmmaker whose work focuses on "untold stories, unheard voices" and filmmaking from the margins. Gharavi has been hailed as one of the most inspirational and thought-provoking filmmakers of her generation. Since leaving Iran in 1979 she has been a true nomad (like her great-grandfather from the Bakhtiari tribe in Persia). Carrying no less than four passports she trained as a painter in the United States and studied cinema in France but currently resides in the North of England. She is noted for her innovative cross-platform work on migration. Sundance programmer Shari Frilot said of Gharavi's film "Closer" that "it takes documentary to the next level." Since then, she has made endearing, inimitably voiced films from unique perspectives on subjects as diverse as Muhammad Ali, teenage sexuality, Yemeni-British sailors, The Lackawanna 6, death row exonerees and lighthouses. Using all her reserves of ingenuity, she recently completed her first feature with no formal film finance. I Am Nasrine is a coming of age story of two teenage Iranian refugees in the North of England. The project patron Sir Ben Kingsley called it "a life enhancing film, an important and much needed film." She plans a change of direction with her next feature, a gangster film with girls, guns and the odd Iranian thrown in. Gharavi also teaches filmmaking at Newcastle University and has lectured worldwide including Oxford University, UCL, SUNY Buffalo and Croatia as well as other exotic locations.