Dark game in Drustos. Director Uģis Olte talks about the film Who Are You in the Wild? / Script – Archyde

Translating the waves of screen presence onto screen, the director has delved deeper into the “savage” than the passionate chronicler. The exhibition website states: “Wild” is a procedural event – ​​an exhibition set in a wild area between Duks and Newfoundland, with no working hours and no caretakers, it is designed as an experience that is immersive in both 15 minutes and a week can be .”

Sonora Brock: What is “Wild” and like in the movie I’m going to ask the question – who were you in “Wild”?

Ugis Olte: “Wild” is a fairly large area in north-eastern Vidzeme, which I think reflects Latvian identity very accurately. It is an area where nature reigns supreme, but where people also participate. These people who work there in nature are artists invited by Andris Eglītis and his like-minded people who basically go into the forest, feel something and then create a work that is allowed to continue to be in that nature and allow nature to transform, as it sees fit. This outdoor exhibition is now in its second year. The first year I was there as a visitor, and the second year I was invited to come back there with a camera from time to time – with no intentions or regulations, just to witness some events, film something and make a year-end short film if the nature sleeps. .

So the idea of ​​capturing “Wild” cinema didn’t come from you, but from the creators of “Wild”?

Yes, but the moment I said yes, I also became a Wild creator. That is the point –

There is no single author, it is the work of a group of people. When I first hit the red record button, I was a co-author.

Knowing that it’s quite a popular place with a lot of people seeing the place first hand, I made a conscious decision that it would be a story – a visual story in which we try to capture the way how the brain forms memories to go “wild”. . The events were linear – the beginning, the end, but then they blend – the sound of one event blends with the image of another event. It is possible to take cinema and play with this intention.

“Who are you in the wild?”

Photo: Emils Lacums

According to one of the people interviewed in the film, “Wild” is described as a lopsided mirror to which other people have applied very interesting distortions, filters and patinas with their creativity. Uģi, you as a director have also left your patina – indirectly we experience “Wildlife” through your vision. What tasks have you set yourself – what to film, what to try to capture? For example, is this film adaptation of the exhibition different from working on a program or literature?

What the TV documentary stories have in common is that you look at the camera with one eye and what is happening around you with the other. Maybe you need to reorient yourself somewhere, look at something else. Here I had two very clear responsibilities – not to compete with another viewer’s experience (I wasn’t trying to compete with how a person might feel), and the other was to just do what I can get there , i.e. with the sound recordings and pictures that were created during the summer length in the “Wild” area. The only thing that is done after that are the captions, but I also drew them with my own hands. These were the two frames you should hold onto and define your practice in this way.

Superimposed with diabetic sounds and music, completely new circles of associations emerge, for example in an episode with the search for the right direction, with a swarm in the swamp, against the background of which women’s singing can be read as a motif by executives.

Leaders or sirens, yes.

When was it decided that the music heard in performances and concerts would be part of your film?

I’ve been there four times over the summer and in fact it was quite a limited amount of material. Looking through the material, I tried without reason to understand what were the first impulses I noticed. One of the first impulses – a conductor leading a wind band from Smiltene – could conduct poets. It is interesting to observe the course of the arrangement over time, to see whether the rhythm of such an orchestra does not coincide with the inner rhythm of the poet. It turns out that this coincides. When I was filming atonal songs, I had a dog with me. He heard these ridiculously atonal songs intelligently at first, but then responded to his usual nature. I thought that if the dog was already affected by those sirens, maybe the very first hike where there was no sign of people getting lost was looking for a way – maybe it was actually a fallacy towards those voices. That’s his nonsense.

Over the years I’ve found that the more you play with something, because that play energy can also be one of the factors that can get people interested.

They can also be very abstract, but when they have that rock ‘n’ roll energy, they’re also cool to look at.

“Who are you in the wild?”

Photo: Madara Gritane

As already mentioned, filming has a very dynamic effect because it is present almost everywhere and not only notes central but also peripheral events. How big was your team? How mobile did you have to be to record what was happening?

Of the four days, the team was one day. I accompanied the doyen Daina Kļava with the other camera because a wind band concert and poetry readings were planned. I think – what I’m there alone, it’s better for two of us – one films, watches, the other films, talks. Aside from that one day, it’s my solo job. And solo in the sense that the client and producer Henrik Elias Sergner said that a film had to be made, but that was the only recipe. Everything else – what and how I do – was one hundred percent freedom, these are the best conditions you can get into.

Cyril Eth says in the film, “I don’t have many places where I’ve been able to achieve such a compelling intimacy with myself and others, and that’s me. Wild.” The film creates similar feelings – we, the viewers, are coming unusually close to us, as if we were part of what was happening. By creating Who Are You in the Wilderness?

It’s a spontaneous reaction to it. I really wonder – the young people I filmed there who gave their thoughts on how they felt there used the words “closeness to nature”, “intimacy” and “safety”. It really surprises me because

In my opinion, this unfamiliar nature of the Drusta area is one of the scariest in Latvian nature. I have a feeling that staying there alone for a few nights could be quite a dark event.

Probably due to the fact that you have to travel far, there are fewer and fewer houses as you get closer to the destination, the roads are covered with good grass on both sides.

When you get there it is clear that you are no longer the crown of nature, that now you slipped as quietly as a mouse and then tried to get out.

It was with that feeling that I made the film – in a play, but a rather dark play. When these people who had seen the whole event saw the film, they said, “Interestingly, it seemed like a much brighter event to us.” Okay, that’s a good vision, but mine is dark. Maybe that’s my predestination for Latvia’s nature, because I find it menacing and dark, and not so calm and calm. I address the same issue in my upcoming feature film, Sacrifice. In Latvia, too, there is no quiet, nurturing, intimate place.

The film shows a procedural impression where all the characters of the film participate in a big event. I also read on the exhibition’s website: “The Wild is a procedural event.” How challenging is it for the director to portray such a processuality, basically a meta-processuality, in a film?

These are the points in the plan – you come back every time and try to see what has changed. What is the tree in which the plant swings or the leaves hold up or fall? Is there still an awful glow, or has the mist already begun?

What was most interesting to me was seeing the change in the faces of the people who stayed in the wilderness most often.

For the first time they walk with crying, they smoke all the time – in such a city bubble they float through their nature. Then they dig the trenches, some kind of savage appears there. Then they swing on the moss carpet by the lake – they smell the city even less. He’s arriving in two months and there’s already a savage on his face – those eyes are tired, overheated, but rather archaic. It was very interesting to see the change and it was the people who felt the change the most.

But how did this film’s heroes emerge – the people we see most often?

Only by spontaneous reaction. There is an event, someone is more visible in it, someone is less visible. You turn to him and then follow the same event as you edit, don’t try to escape your instinctive choices made while filming.

Can the state of the film be divided into sections, sections?

At one point I even thought about separating them with titles and also calling them scenes – there’s a glow scene and an atonal scene, a morning scene, but I found out – which I now prescribe for things that are also felt. However, you can live without such a discernible limit. It’s also easy to assemble – you look at the material and you know – I’ll have this and that picture, and when you make them a prefix may appear, but very rarely. When you do them, you also know – it will go very well with the next one. You will find your place automatically. I always think in small scenes and then kind of grind them up, but even if I try to get out of there, in the end it turns out there are scenes.

The film begins with steam, which can be either midday or midsummer, and slowly approaches twilight. However, this one day that we seem to be seeing is made up of a longer period of the film. Was it decided to make this film like one day?

No, if you follow the instinctive impulses that come from your own consciousness, then it is possible that the same formulas that exist elsewhere in nature repeat themselves there. Of course, let’s start with something quiet. Sometimes you can start with something explosive, but in this case I started with calm. Then something works. Then there’s the sun in the south, it’s terribly hot – that was also reflected in the film. Then everything slowly cools down, water is found, some voices are followed, night falls. None of this is special. Such representations for the season or the day of the representation only arise by intuitively following one’s own impulses. I was also interested in this –

When there are no rules, it’s very cool to follow your own inner rules, which reveal themselves without even asking.


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