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Two things must be said about LA EDAD MEDIA (The Middle Ages).

The first is that it is a film shot during lockdown for the pandemic.

The second is that it is not a film about lockdown during the pandemic.

This paradox runs through the whole film and raises the questions it asks throughout. Like many of our previous projects, the process of creation, filming, and writing evolves from a moment of documentary to one of pure fiction. But in this case that initial material, on the edge of reality, has in its gestation a mark that lockdown unequivocally left on us, with the entire cast and crew and reduced to three people who live together in a house where the whole story takes place. This doesn't mean that the recording of images and sound is amateur—far from it. What it does mean is that extreme intimacy and closeness are the bases from which the film’s images and sounds are projected, in an approach close to abstraction and close to physical explosion, with imagination running wild, with musical language, and with poetic, literary ambition. In short, with the type of fiction that, without denying its historical origin, recognizes its lineage more in the imagination than in realism.

A contemporary cinema should be a cinema that does not move in the direction of the present but one that can experience that present in a different way, in an oblique and unpredictable manner.

During the months of shooting in lockdown some questions arose time and again: Where is cinema? What is cinema? How can we make a film that recounts this very particular chapter in history and at the same time not falsify it with an endless number of clichés? How can we make a film in a house in lockdown in a big city that does not make that problem its theme and render it redundant? Who wants to see a film about the pandemic? And at the same time, who can watch a film about the present that looks the other way as if nothing was happening here? Furthermore, how can we go back to doing the same that we did before the pandemic? And if we are all defined by what we do but we no longer do that, who are we? A contemporary cinema should be a cinema that does not move in the direction of the present but one that can experience that present in a different way, in an oblique and unpredictable manner. A cinema made by ghosts, by spectres, by the dead who have returned and who on this occasion try to do what they do best: comedy.

These are the abysses that lurk constantly in LA EDAD MEDIA. These are the chasms that simultaneously open up hopes that are full of light. If post-war cinema engendered Neorealism, among other things, shouldn’t a historical process as forceful as this give way to a new film language? We would go so far as to say that LA EDAD MEDIA ventures a possible form. A form that believes in a willingness to create indecipherable, inconceivable, and hypnotic images that return us to an uncertain homeland of chromatic adventures and tragedies of space. A cinematographic homeland populated by characters with exploded psychologies, with falls and bodily agonies, with kisses as forms of light or forms of landscape, with all the possible forms of the ego sinking. A cinema that ventures a portrayal of the world, artistic creation, childhood, the market, ourselves in a double and paradoxical image: in the fragility of its documentary assurance and in the bluntness of its deception, of its invention and projection towards the most complete form of fiction.

On the other hand, LA EDAD MEDIA is no more than a story told by a 10-year-old girl who reads "Waiting for Godot" with her dog and the mysterious character in a helmet called Moto, while behind her parents’ backs they sell all the things in the house, leaving it completely empty.

As a line in the Beckett text that runs through the film declares:

Time she stopped.

Luciana Acuña and Alejo Moguillansky

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  • Logo Minister of State for Culture and the Media
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