FCS OF LIVE
Silvia Maglioni, Graeme Thomson
Les Facs of Life
HD/Digi Beta Pal - colour
festival & awards:
A small copse, like something out of a fairy story opens the narrative, one voice, then others, and another image in the distance wrested from obliteration – that of Gilles Deleuze giving one of his lessons at the university of Vincennes, real projects on thought, on life. Yet what remains of their poignancy today, of this adventure that was deliberately interrupted and erased? In their first film, the Italian Silvia Maglioni and the Scot Graeme Thomson, Facs of life immediately announce their objective: to pass from the facts to facs (fawlties: the idea of a university), in other words a film about the utopia of imparting knowledge, and the accessibility of knowledge which is at once alive and vital. How do you feed the desire to sustain the creative impulse, to travel towards this future which animated the philosopher. What are the means needed for this endeavour? It stirs up this material through the very movements of the images that are summoned up and questioned. Mixing, reframing, manipulating archives, lectures, interviews with former students and current-day opinions of students at what has now become Paris VIII in Saint-Denis; the film carries out a penetrating enquiry into the political and aesthetic echoes of the philosopher’s ideas. Editing and superimposing images as in the opening sequence – ‘fault lines’ and palimpsests that call to arms Jeff Wall, Virginia Woolf, Francis Ponge, Corbusier or Walter Benjamin. They revisit moments such as the throbbing sequence hurtling through the Bois de Vincennes, which highlights the obliteration – appropriating ideas, while putting even cinematic experience itself at risk. Interspersed with ideas from Deleuze and far from being a simple act of homage, Facs of life brings us more than an overview, more than a reconstruction. Far from being a film “about”…, it is a wake-up call.