Film series at Kino im Kasten (KiK)
Cinema is a place that opens up worlds - metaphorically, but always also in real terms. Films not only show images, they produce them and in this way shape our cultural memory. In films we see what otherwise remains hidden from us - at the price, of course, that they in turn cover up such images that we have formed from reading or our own observation.
Admittedly, for most people in the 21st century, monasteries are places they do not know from their own experience - at least those that not only present themselves as museums, but in which women or men still live according to a fixed and binding order, i.e. monastically. So it can be said: what we know about monasteries, we know very essentially through media mediation, whereby film has a special role to play. It is comparatively unimportant whether it is a historical film set in the Middle Ages or a current crime scene. What both have in common is the character of what is portrayed: Monasteries are always different.
Why monasteries are different and how this otherness is presented is now to be experienced and understood in the cinema itself: In the coming summer semester, the Research Center for Comparative History of Religious Orders (FOVOG) at the TU Dresden would like to start a two-semester film series "Monasteries in the Cinema" together with Kino im Kasten (KiK)
, the TU's student-run university cinema. In particular, feature films will be shown in which monastic life is the central subject, but also selected documentaries.
Such an approach lends itself for several reasons: On the one hand, monasteries are a phenomenon with a long history and in constant exchange with the world around them. On the other hand, they function as spaces of mystery and secrecy, despite the fact that they have been highly influential in society for a long time. This makes monasteries projection surfaces not only for needs but also for fantasies.
Even if their social significance has clearly receded in the modern age, monasteries still stand for a certain life model of searching - traditionally for God, today perhaps more generally for meaning. They are places of silence and prayer, but also cultural, scientific or economic centres. They are places of retreat, but have played a significant role in shaping the world over the centuries. They are places that always belong to other, otherworldly spaces - the transcendent. The fact that monasteries as places of otherness are nevertheless generally known and occupied with certain ideas today, despite their increasing real disappearance, is largely due to their presence in film.
The film series begins on 2 May at 8 p.m. in the KiK with Jacques Rivette's film version of Diderot's "The Nun" (1966) - an impressive film about the urge for freedom and social conventions, which caused such a stir when it was released that it was immediately banned again. It becomes clear that monasteries still move the modern age.
02.05.2022: Die Nonne (Suzanne Simonin, la religieuse de Diderot), dir. Jacques Rivette (1966)
15.05.2022: Franziskus (Francesco), dir. Liliana Cavani (1989)
30.05.2022: Von Menschen und Göttern (Des hommes et des dieux), dir. Xavier Beauvois (2010)
13.06.2022: Ida, dir. Paweł Pawlikowski (2013)
27.06.2022: Der Name der Rose (The Name of the Rose), dir. Jean-Jacques Annaud (1986)