News  ·  03 | 08 | 2018

Welcome To The Jungle

Rūgštus miškas - Fuori concorso

It will come as no surprise to know that the interdisciplinary path that led Rugilė Barzdžiukaitė to this debut feature film has crossed not only video art and documentary, but also the visual arts and, above all, theater. Uniting an original combination of installation art, nature documentary and surreal comedy, a cross between Richard Attenborough, Alfred Hitchcock and Jacques Tati, Rūgštus miškas (Acid Forest) creates a bizarre feature whose scenery is a lunar wooded landscape devastated by the excrement of a colony of cormorants, which has become an unlikely tourist attraction, and at the centre of which is placed a platform for “birdwatching”. Here the tourists who, with comic repetitive effect, follow one another, having arrived to admire the exceptional destruction orchestrated by nature, themselves become, through a joyful reversal, the object of curiosity of us, the viewers, as actors on a stage, thanks to the effective disorientation generated by the inconsistency between the distance from which they are filmed (the definition of bird's-eye view has never made more sense), and the proximity of their voices, picked up by the microphones installed on the platform. As tourists hurriedly face each other and, perplexed, leave again, we immerse ourselves in Barzdžiukaitė's visual orchestration, where the impassive cormorants know that tree after tree, guano after guano, they will eventually have won anyway.