Seuls: Short Work 2’

Tonight, Sabzian and Avila are hosting Seuls: Short Work 2’, a short film programme compiled by Sabzian, comprised of three films by directors who played a key role in the Belgian surrealist movement: Monsieur Fantômas (Ernst Moerman,1937), Magritte ou La leçon de choses (Luc de Heusch, 1960) and L'imitation du cinéma (Marcel Mariën, 1960). The film programma is now available in the BeNeLux until midnight CET. To celebrate this special occasion Sabzian and Avila are offering the first 250 coupons for free. When the limit of coupons has been reached, the film programme will still remain available on Avila at the usual charge. On the occasion of this online screening, Sabzian published several texts accompanying the programme. Below you wan also find an introduction to the programme by art historian Steven Jacobs.

Article NL FR

De surrealisten van het eerste uur, nog vaag vervuld van een dadaïstische geestesgesteldheid, zetten alle zeilen bij en mengden vrolijk disciplines door elkaar om het publiek te verbluffen. Terwijl hun geschriften, theater, muziek en schilderkunst al gauw floreerden, bleef het gebruik van film lange tijd een moeizamere kwestie, in België nog meer dan elders.

Article FR

Tout le surréalisme est au service de Fantômas.
C’est le seul être au monde avec qui
J’aurais aimé me faire photographier à la foire.

Article NL FR
Henri Storck 1951
Vertaald door

“De mijnwerkers komen uit de mijnschacht tevoorschijn. Ze gaan de straat op, hun gezichten zwart, leerkartonnen helmen op hun hoofd, brandende lampen in hun handen, in dichte rijen die de hele breedte van de straat innemen. Ze naderen met rasse schreden, neuriën een zacht en krachtig gefluisterd lied, voorafgegaan door een zwarte stofwolk.”


Although there has been a notable rise of Arab female film directors in recent decades, the work of many pioneers tends to remain painfully neglected. The Out of the Shadows film programme, originally conceived for the Courtisane festival 2020 in Ghent, was intended to address this obscurity and revitalize the work of a diversity of filmmakers whose films remain overlooked and barely screened. Five of these filmmakers are presented in this Dossier: Atteyat Al-Abnoudy, Selma Baccar, Assia Djebar, Jocelyne Saab and Heiny Srour. In the words of Assia Djebar: “All of us, all of us who come from the world of women in the shadows, are reversing the process: at last it is we who are looking, we who are making a beginning. ”

Conversation EN

“Each time I made a film, it was in a given political period; each time I had a political objective, my films couldn’t just be without orientation. That’s not sentimentality. Through a form of sensibility, a political problem emerges. The destruction of Beirut, the children fighting, it means something. I figured this way of showing things could touch people and have a real political impact. People are fed up with the talking. On television, for example, one day they show a representative of the left, the next a representative of the right. Every day, they agree with someone else, and they end up forgetting who’s right or wrong!”

Article EN

I would also like to express my affection for Jocelyne. On the strength of her films and the way she has lived her life to date, I consider her one of the bravest, most intelligent and above all freest spirits I have ever encountered – though her freedom of thought and behaviour has sometimes cost her dearly and even put her life in danger. Few other people have suffered so much to preserve their self-esteem and survive in a meaningful way in a world as hostile and indifferent as ours.

note EN

On March 25th, Bertrand Tavernier, one of the most versatile and foremost figures of French cinema, passed away at the age of 79.

Article FR EN

It is Khleifi’s achievement to have embodied certain aspects of Palestinian women’s lives in film. He is careful to let the strengths of Farah and Sahar emerge slowly, even if at a pace that risks losing the film the larger audience it deserves. He deliberately disappoints the expectations engendered in us by the commercial film (plot, suspense, drama), in favor of a representational idiom more innovative and – because of its congruence with its anomalous and eccentric material – more authentic.

Conversation FR EN

“[Fertile Memory] is the result of several years of work. I made several reports in the occupied territories, but I also have to say that the film was beyond me. The Palestinian question is basically an issue of oppression: an oppression that dominates the world. I said to myself that I would be able to give the Palestinian question a new dimension by talking about the most oppressed. I thought that women would help bring out all the contradictions.”

Article NL
Meagan Day 2020
Vertaald door

De politieke zelfgenoegzaamheid van de jaren ’90 leverde een verrassend groot aantal mainstream Amerikaanse romantische komedies op over het verzet tegen de gevestigde macht. Maar You’ve Got Mail bracht ons een nieuwe fantasie, volledig geneoliberaliseerd: wat als de gevestigde macht de ware is?

Manifesto NL

Wij zien geen toekomst in een stiefmoederlijk beleid dat “scherpe” keuzes maakt, er is integendeel dringend nood aan zorgzame en correcte ondersteuning van alle bestaande initiatieven. Wij zijn van mening dat een voldragen en divers filmlandschap zich enkel blijvend kan manifesteren wanneer dat gepaard gaat met de ontwikkeling van een scherpzinnige en diepgaande filmkritiek. Red de filmcultuur, investeer in filmkritiek!


Subversive Film, a curatorial collective that focuses on militant film practices, launches Resounding Archives, a podcast series featuring conversations with filmmakers, archivists, freedom fighters and activists about their work and participation in the liberation struggle for Palestine during the 1968-82 period. 

From the Archive

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Le sujet de tous les films du monde, c’est : je t’aime-tu m’aimes, ou alors, je t’aime-tu ne m’aimes pas ; je et tu, répartis entre amants et parents. Ce film a pour sujet le sujet de tous le films : mon « cher » sujet, mon cher « sujet ».

Correspondence NL EN

It seems that, while all these others are to be paid for their part in a show that could not have taken place without me, nonetheless, I, the artist, am not to be paid. 

Article NL FR EN

After the success of their first screenings in 1895, Auguste and Louis Lumière sent their representatives out into the world to shoot images and project them on the spot. Alexandre Promio (1868-1926) was one of the first of these opérateurs dispatched by the brothers. In this travelogue, Promio describes how the miracle of cinematography was welcomed with amazement and enthusiasm in every corner of the world. Promio: “If, in France and in Europe, the appearance of the Lumière cinematograph had provoked the greatest enthusiasm, what could I say about what I experienced in the United States?”