ONE LONG CONTINUOS SHOT short film.
NO edits or cuts.
Directed by Lisa Camillo
Cinematography by Lisa Camillo & Andrew Hewson
Written by Lisa Camillo & Andrew Hewson
Requiem is a tragedy, a large theatrical legacy of my own cultural past. Italian, especially Roman and Greek tragedies permeate our culture. It’s the weight of our past, an identity made of ghosts, of Catholic rituals and iconographies.
Italian funerals are painful rites that celebrate sorrow and the end of everything instead of looking into the future. Italian culture is very earthy, we are concentrated in our terrestrial life and the mark made by our own hands, hence our artistic legacy, while in other cultures, especially in Asia, death is just a gateway to a better world of truth and re-birth.
The film is one long continues shot. The choice of utilizing this particular shot was to symbolize how life is a never-stopping and continuous merry-go-round: the end is the beginning and vice versa. There is no break in life where we stop and readjust our angles and perspectives. We have to persist and deal with every hurdle that we encounter without stopping.
The choice of hand-held, of a tight shot and of a revolving camera movement around the characters symbolise how life is for humans; it adds tensions and a disorienting experience. This techniques draw the audience in the scene, to feel how the characters feel, to suffer and empathise with them, which is in net contrast with films like ‘Salo´: 120 Days of Sodom’, were the characters/victims are dehumanised by being far away from the audience. To achieve that Pier Paolo Pasolini used wide shots and a static camera.
The camera revolving around the funeral procession in circular movement is intentional and has not only a practical cinematic reason, but also it’s a divinatory representation of the cosmos. The Turkish practice of Sufi whirling, practiced by the Darvishes is a physically active meditation which originated among Sufis, that it’s utilised to reach a state assumed by outsiders to be one of "ecstatic trances”. However, the spinning of the body and the revolution of the group in repetitive circles is a symbolic imitation of planets in the Solar System orbiting the sun. It is scientifically recognized that the fundamental condition of our existence is to revolve. There is no being or object that does not revolve, because all beings are comprised of revolving electrons, protons, and neutrons in atoms. Everything revolves, and the human being lives by means of the revolution of these particles, by the revolution of the blood in his/her body, and by the revolution of the stages of his/her life, by his/hers coming from earth and his/hers returning to it. By revolving in harmony with all things in nature -- with the smallest cells and with the stars in the firmament -- the semazen testifies to the existence and the majesty of the Creator.
Il Ciclo della Vita:
The one-long shot starts in the same way as its ending, representing the cycle of life. We’re born, we grow old, we die and our progeny takes our place in this continuous and never-ending terrestrial journey.
The film starts with children that represent the childhood. Then it quickly shifts to adulthood, which is where our mortal life has the longest journey of learning and growth. The characters in this phase have to go through rocks, trees and adversities in order to reach the last stage of their lives: old age. Here, life passes fast: diseases, injuries and painful memories take a toll on their fragile bodies that crumble under the weight of life and the burden that they carry.