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Russia, France, 2020

Production : Adèle Shaykhulova

Programmed by Jérémie Jorrand

French, Russian

French, English

The films of Visions du réel


As a small girl, Adèle Shaykhulova had to leave Russia for France, leaving the rest of her family behind. To make up for this absence, she secretly films their conversations. But when she learns that her cousin Sonia, with whom she grew up, has cancer, film becomes perhaps the only way to bridge an immeasurable distance.

A word from Tënk

To bridge the distance that separates her from her family, the director records their video conversations. In this film, relationships and emotions are expressed exclusively via digital tools, blurring the lines between presence and absence. Although childhood videos were filmed to immortalise a shared present, now the pictures only seem to exist to fill a void. So death occurs but the images remain. They stick in the mind like haunting music, the song we sing for our grandfather’s birthday, the voice we imitate so as not to forget it, the theme tune of a series we used to watch together. A moving, deceptively simple film that speaks to us of love, family and mourning in a very contemporary way, in other words, in a world where, by being everywhere, maybe we’re nowhere…

Jérémie Jorrand
Head of Programming and Editorial Content at Tënk, France

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