Films A-ZMain ProgrammeTHE PRESENCE OF WHAT’S ABSENT

PERSISTENCE

PERSISTENCE

Jan-Holger Hennies, Anne Huffschmid | Mexico, Germany 2019 | 54 Min. | OmeU

Austrian Premiere

The organised crime of disappearing people and the desperate search for the disappeared keeps many Mexicans in its grip. Persistance is an audiovisual journey through Mexico’s landscapes of disappearances and introduces us to the challenges faced by relatives, who, against all odds, look for the remains of their loved ones. The clean-cut edit, the unintrusive camera work and the absence of commentaries make for a jolting and haunting documentation of what it means for relatives not to know what happened to their loved ones, and the struggles they take on to get to some kind of certainty.
The film follows two self-organised search brigades as well as anthropologists that defy also indifference and impunity. In landscapes of uncertainty, extreme violence, absent or corrupted authorities there is only one certainty: the human remains.


Director: Anne Huffschmid, Jan-Holger Hennies
Camera, Sounddesign: Jan-Holger Hennies, Adriana Álvarez
Editing: Jan-Holger Hennies
Producer: Anne Huffschmid 

Screenings
Ambulante 2020 (Sección Coordenadas), Mexico (May 2020); LASA2020 Film Festival, Guadalajara, Mexico (Mayo 2020); Le Cinéma IFAL, Mexico City, Mexico (February 2020); Cineteca Chihuahua, Ciudad de Chihuahua, Mexico (November 2019); Cineforo Universidad, Guadalajara, Mexico (November 2019); Brot für die Welt, Berlin, Germany (September 2019)


Biography Anne Huffschmid
Huffschmid is an author and visual researcher based in Berlin. She holds a PhD in Cultural Sciences and has been working, for several decades by now, on topics such as urban culture, violence and social memory, discourse and visual cultures, with a particular focus on Latin America, especially Mexico. Her current project “Forensic Landscapes”, which she initiated in 2013, deals with emerging (counter)forensic agencies in Mexico and other Latin American countries.

Biography Jan-Holger Hennies
Hennies is a documentary filmmaker and editor based in Berlin. His works explore different forms of film and web-based narratives, interested in creating intimate and alternate approaches to scenarios of violence and practices of resistance. He enjoys to branch out of these topics from time to time though. Jan is an MA graduate from the Granada Centre for Visual Anthropology at the University of Manchester.