NOLI ME TANGERE
Either written by John or painted by Giotto, the scene is famous. Two hands come close to Jesus’ body, but his voice stops Mary Magdalene’s gesture: “Don’t touch me”. Which means, according to Jean-Luc Nancy: “Don’t cling to me, let me go, don’t think about holding me back or reaching me.” Christophe Bisson keeps filming this prayer, this commandment, on the faces of several men and
a woman scarred by life, who have chosen to withdraw from society and live on the margins of the world. This series of portraits is interspersed with atmospheric variations over the same landscape: the view of a city in the distance, lost in
the haze or in the dark. By hearing this prayer and refraining from seizing his subjects, the director shows the greatest tact in his approach of these lives and in his practice of cinema: he doesn’t try to understand or to explain anything,
he simply puts himself on the side of survivors, stands or walks by their sides, and records what they are willing to show him about the small habits and rituals by which they cling on to the edges of the world. Playing the piano, caressing photographs, squeezing pieces of stale bread before feeding them to the ducks, drawing a skewed map of Paris like a psycho-geographer haunted by monuments, tracing the route of a piece of one’s life over a map of Italy, writing a letter to one’s sister to reassure her… Such are the paradoxes of touch and distance: it is by filming hands and gestures as closely as he can that Bisson, without extorting any secret, gains access to silent or sometimes whispered pains. Hands keep touching again and again, to keep in contact with existence, to stay alive in spite of everything. (C.N.)
Original version : french. Subtitles : english. Script : Christophe Bisson, Vincent Mégie. Image : Christophe Bisson. Assistant image : Antoine Cordier Assistante Directors : Caroline Adam. Sound : Thomas Clolus. Editing : Christophe Bisson. Sound creation : Alexandre Le Petit. Casting : Victor Bury, Joël Bossard, Robert Guillard, Gilles Letourneur, Philippe Vacquin, Jean-Raymond Caillot, Patrick Vanier, Philippe Bompain, Vincent Mégie.
Production : Christophe Bisson.
Distribution : Christophe Bisson.
Filmography : Notes d’un souterrain, 2018. Silencio, 2016. Lenz Élégie, 2015. Sarah(K.), 2014. Entrée des écuyères et des tigres, 2014.
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