Before containerships leave the harbour to carry goods, lashers fasten containers using heavy long metal bars. Surrounded by self-driven vehicles and remotely operated cranes, they are among the last who do dangerous physical work in harbours across the globe. At night shifts, while they wait for a ship, their bodies rest and start to speak. In dreamy sequences, they explore their environment through skin, ears, muscles, and bones. Stowaway animals appear as visions of a more natural world.
Year of production 2021 Length 21min Country Netherlands Shooting Format 4K Aspect Ratio 2.39:1 Dialogue English, Dutch Director Katarina Jazbec Producer Sem Janssen, Katarina Jazbec Production TENT Film WriterKatarina Jazbec Cinematographer Matija Pekić Editor Jesse Immanuel Bom, Katarina Jazbec Sound Designer Jorick Bronius Music Giliam Spliethoff Choreography Angeliki Diakrousi CG Animation Ryan Cherewaty Cast Toby Slager, Django Binder, Shennen Jamanika, Brown Pinas, Lars Masselink, Misja Vos, Martines Simmons Supported by IFFR RTM Pitch Award - Mondriaan Fonds - V2_ Lab for the Unstable Media - TENT Film - Het Raam Digital Cinema - Budgetcam
Festival selections World Premiere
Director's Note As a filmmaker, I am intrigued by the contrast between the idea of never-ending progress and the agency of our finite human bodies. As I live in Rotterdam, the port loomed large in my imagination as a space to explore this dichotomy. I set out to traverse this huge, seemingly impenetrable, hub of human and technological activity. There I encountered the lashing community. In shifts around the clock, they perform heavy labour in any kind of weather on giant containerships. These strong and resilient workers are largely invisible even though they still play a crucial role in our economy. Through the stories of these lashers I became aware of animals hiding in containers and crossing the oceans as stowaways. They also became a presence in the film, emphasising the non-human perspective. From the start, I wanted to build a visceral cinematic language deriving from movement and dance techniques. Together with Angeliki Diakrousi (choreographer), we developed The Handbook for Eyes, Bones, Muscles, Skin, and Dreams, which we based on interviews with lashers, extensive field visits, and studio experiments. It contains choreographic scores that are inspired by Feldenkrais, Butoh, and Deep Listening. The arts of poetic movement meet the workers whose bodies tell what is at stake in our society.