Histories can overlap, they can blend. They are such stuff as stories and myths are made of, and they are responsible for the intensity of both real and fictional places. For Brent Chesanek, it all starts with the skulls of two men named Powell, found on the same area: although the men have nothing in common, for the sake of the film, they cross paths in a reinvented village. On the one hand, Lewis Powell, a proslavery murderer who conspired to overthrow the American government in 1865, under a series of aliases, so as to preserve institutional slavery after the southern defeat. On the other hand, Bill Powell, a famous anticolonial Seminole rebel, who forsook his occidental name and fought the colons under the name of Osceola during the 1830s, when native populations were driven out of newly acquired Florida. Crossing threads and tales, Brent Chesanek introduces us to a country populated by ghosts. His heteronymous game and shift create a history and a geography in this territory that deepens and takes on a different density. Through the muggy Floridian landscapes, by day or at dusk, the gaze is transformed by the collage and stratification of stories and voices, including that of an unexpected and metamorphosed Marco Polo, as the matrix of all travel writings. Thus, Brent Chesanek rebuilds this piece of land according to the codes of explorers. This clever detour enables the village to become the archetype of some bigger American identity. All this piling and weaving draw the portrait of a national history of white supremacy and European colonialism, as the founding principles of the American national narrative, which remains deeply rooted today.
Original version : french, english
Subtitles : english
Script : Brent Chesanek
Photography : Owen Levelle, Brent Chesanek
Editing : Brent Chesanek
Music : Chris Zabriskie
Sound : Brent Chesanek, Kevin T Allen
Casting : Alessandro Magania, Daniel B.C, Powell, Wendy Kay White, Krysta Wallrauch, Ana Beranek
Production & distribution : Brent Chesanek (Auxerrine).
Filmography : City World, 2012.
In Kyiv, the war still seems inconceivable, but the pandemic forces a mother and her daughter to spend the lockdown in their shared apartment. The mother is a piano teacher who keeps giving lessons...En savoir +
Minia Biabiany’s work (films, installations, sculptures) is informed by her experience as a Guadeloupean woman, she is unapologetic about her work being inseparable from her homeland. Here, water...En savoir +
"Obsada" means "film crew" in Polish, but can also mean "task force". The crew here is dual purpose. First the film crew, in front of and behind the camera, who are all women – art and film...En savoir +
Divided into three chapters, A General Disappointment is an existential meditation based on a text read through a series of long still frames. These stage the director Serge Garcia in everyday...En savoir +
Liv Schulman enjoys working with figures who become alter egos of sorts. After the investigator in her metaphysical detective series Control, she introduces us to a new avatar. The point here is to...En savoir +
Continuing his research into European canon, its concepts, history and grey areas, (Daphne and Thomas, FID 2019), Assaf Gruber is our tour guide. Rude Witness – after Transient Witness- takes us in...En savoir +
La vie des hommes infâmes (The Life of Infamous Men) was the project for a book that never saw the light of day but for which Michel Foucault wrote a preface. He wanted to collect the written...En savoir +
Hushed voices announce a girl’s death. Kneeling around the corpse, the teenage girls stare at her. Again, they whisper, chanting in unison “light as a feather, stiff as a board”, a magic...En savoir +
In Spilliaert, we joyfully rediscover a taste for the interwoven mix of genres that captivated us in N.P (FID 2020). Lisa Spilliaert uses the pretext of an investigation into her potentially shared...En savoir +
Danielle Arbid works at the heart of feelings, from one film to the next, the most recent Simple Passion (2021) based on Annie Ernaux embodies the quintessence of this. Less well-known is a more...En savoir +