Films

Nothingwood

Nothingwood

Synopsis

Director

Warm, flamboyant characters that any screenwriter would be proud to have invented are the fascinating raw material of „Nothingwood“, Sonia Kronlund’s delightfully entertaining documentary about Salim Shaheen and his merry band of filmmaking associates.

Chubby force of nature Shaheen has managed to make and self-distribute no fewer than 110 movies in war-torn Afghanistan. He can’t read or write, but he acts and directs by the seat of his pants and gets mobbed in the streets wherever he goes thanks to his little-guy centered tales modelled in part on Bollywood fare complete with singing and dancing. This is a crowd-pleasing winner that’s educational, touching and hilarious. An infectious live-for-today energy permeates every frame.

First-time filmmaker Kronlund works for French radio and has been visiting and reporting from Afghanistan for over 15 years. In her sparingly dosed voice-over she admits that since the stories she brought back to France tended to be about horrific topics, such as women disfigured by acid attacks, she wondered if perhaps she was missing something more jovial. The resulting documentary grips from the outset with its outsized, bottomlessly confident protagonist who it’s tempting to call the Ed Wood of Afghanistan.

Lisa Nessleson, Screen International

Sonia Kronlund

has worked on numerous scripts including „Raï“ by Thomas Gilou (1995), directed documentaries and several series for television. Following a brief stint at Cahiers du Cinéma, she started working in radio and has produced, since 2002, the daily documentary broadcast „Les Pieds sur for“ France Culture. „Nothingwood“ (2017) is her first feature as director.

Filmography

  • Nothingwood (2017, doc)

Schedule

22.11.2017
18:00 - 19:25
Tallinn, 
Coca-Cola Plaza
Hall 9
Subtitles: ENG
Screening code: 060603
Sold out
25.11.2017
21:30 - 22:55
Tallinn, 
Kino Artis
Hall 1
Subtitles: ENG
Screening code: 091305
Sold out
30.11.2017
21:15 - 22:40
Tartu, 
Cinamon
Hall 4
Subtitles: ENG
Screening code: 141803
Sold out
Screenings with guests might end later than expected.

Programme

Screen International Critics' Choice

Film info

Countries: France, Germany
Year: 2017
Duration: 85 minutes
Languages: French, Dari, English
Director: Sonia Kronlund
Producer: Laurent Lavolé
DOP: Alexander Nanau
Montage:  Sophie Brunet, George Cragg
Cast: Qurban Ali, Sonia Kronlund, Salim Shaheen
Production: Gloria Films
Festivals: Cannes, Munich, Jerusalem, Locarno, London

Synopsis

Director

Warm, flamboyant characters that any screenwriter would be proud to have invented are the fascinating raw material of „Nothingwood“, Sonia Kronlund’s delightfully entertaining documentary about Salim Shaheen and his merry band of filmmaking associates.

Chubby force of nature Shaheen has managed to make and self-distribute no fewer than 110 movies in war-torn Afghanistan. He can’t read or write, but he acts and directs by the seat of his pants and gets mobbed in the streets wherever he goes thanks to his little-guy centered tales modelled in part on Bollywood fare complete with singing and dancing. This is a crowd-pleasing winner that’s educational, touching and hilarious. An infectious live-for-today energy permeates every frame.

First-time filmmaker Kronlund works for French radio and has been visiting and reporting from Afghanistan for over 15 years. In her sparingly dosed voice-over she admits that since the stories she brought back to France tended to be about horrific topics, such as women disfigured by acid attacks, she wondered if perhaps she was missing something more jovial. The resulting documentary grips from the outset with its outsized, bottomlessly confident protagonist who it’s tempting to call the Ed Wood of Afghanistan.

Lisa Nessleson, Screen International

Sonia Kronlund

has worked on numerous scripts including „Raï“ by Thomas Gilou (1995), directed documentaries and several series for television. Following a brief stint at Cahiers du Cinéma, she started working in radio and has produced, since 2002, the daily documentary broadcast „Les Pieds sur for“ France Culture. „Nothingwood“ (2017) is her first feature as director.

Filmography

  • Nothingwood (2017, doc)