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14th DMZ Docs(2022)

I AM DOCU



Like an Island

Tizian BÜCHI

  • Switzerland
  • 2022
  • 104min
  • G
  • DCP
  • color

AP

Synopsis

Two watchmen secure the river that runs through a neighbourhood in Lausanne. Ammar is new to the job, and Daniel shares his experience with him. During their rounds and encounters with the inhabitants, they observe and are observed, while bonds are being formed. What could have happened by the river?

Review

We find two men on the shores of a forested shallow river in Lausanne, Switzerland. The older man speaks to the younger man. “Our mission is clear and that is to watch! (...) We just have to keep people out of the river.” The people he is talking about are retired seniors or migrants who live nearby. What is going on there? Are they making drugs as the children say? Director Tizian Büchi leads this mysterious story by ambiguously combining documentarian observation and fantasy narrative. Ambiguity is the core concept of this film. The two protagonists' job is to monitor the riverbank, or more precisely, the villagers. But at the same time, the subjects also see them back and share with each other what they think they have seen. The individual memory is not completely separated from the collective memory. Thus, the ambiguous boundaries between surveillance and interest, meddling and bonding constantly cross the film. I don’t think there is any more witty and delicate fable than this to reflect on everyday relationships and space?

Director

  • Tizian BÜCHI

    He works as a programmer for various festivals, including Neuchâtel International Fantastic Film Festival, Locarno Film Festival. Currently Solothurn Film Festival and Kurzfilmtage Winterthur. Like an Island is his first feature film.

Credit