Die Kamera in der Fabrik
Under the title ‘Die Kamera in der Fabrik’, NDR producer Hans Brecht edited in 1970 the German version of the films ‘A bientôt j`espère’ (1968) by Chris Marker and ‘Classe de Lutte’ (1969) by Groupe Medvedkine. These two films were produced by Slon (Service de Lancement des Œuvres Nouvelles), a production cooperative which Chris Marker had initiated in 1967 and which had conceived such significant works as ‘Loin de Vietnam’ (1967), directed by Jean-Luc Godard, Agnes Varda, Joris Ivens and others. In 1974, Slon was renamed as ISKRA (Image, Son, Kinescope et Realisations Audiovisuelles) who, until today, produce and distribute independent films. Slon/ISKRA have made a great contribution to the history of film, both in terms of their own unique aesthetics and their collective method of production.
CHRIS MARKERA bientôt j’espère (Bis bald, hoffentlich!), FR 1968
During the protests in 1967, which represented the prelude to the revolt of 1968 and the first major strike movement in France since 1936, the Nouvelle Vague filmmakers turn their attention to the strike-bound factories. They film the events and, at the same time, screen their own films in the factories; the première of ‘Loin de Vietnam’ (1967), for example, was organised by strikers. With ‘A bientôt j’espère’, Chris Marker and several of his comrades-in-arms at Slon shoot a film to support the big strike at the Rhodiacéta/Rhone-Poulenc factory in Besançon. In the film, Marker gives a voice to the workers; a sparse, purely informative commentary subordinates itself to what the strikers have to say. Yet they still criticise the fact that the filmic gaze is too ethnographic and remains situated outside the working class. A number of workers then found a film collective themselves: the Groupe Medvedkine.
GROUPE MEDVEDKINEClasse de lutte (Kampfklasse), FR 1969, OV
A woman joins the union and pursues her own politicisation and that of her colleagues. As a response and continuation of Marker’s ‘A bientôt j’espère’, the newly founded Groupe Medvedkine, comprised of a dozen workers, shoots this film.
Viewed together, these two rarely screened films form a teaching-piece on the contradictory relation between filmmakers and the persons filmed.
BRD 1970 (FR 1968-69), 16mm, 85 min,
OF mit dt. Synchronstimme
Anschl. Diskussion mit Inger Servolin, ISKRA (Slon), FR