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MARE IMBRIUM

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by Siegfried A. Fruhauf

grade: 8

In Mare Imbrium, Siegfried A. Fruhauf knows exactly what he wants to communicate to us. We understand this immediately as the digital images turn into analogue images, and then become digital again according to a precise elliptical structure. At the Diagonale 2024.

Moon watching

This is not the first time that director Siegfried A. Fruhauf has observed the sky and all the beauty it has to offer us. One only has to think, for instance, of the interesting experimental short film Realtime (2002), in which through the observation of a celestial body, magic happened on the movie screen. In the case of the short film Mare Imbrium, which premiered at the Diagonale 2024 as part of the Innovatives Kino section, however, the moon is the main protagonist. In how many ways can we observe the moon? And, above all, how can we fully enjoy all the beauty that such a vision is capable of conveying to us?

In Mare Imbrium, therefore, we are not shown the moon directly. Or, anyway, not immediately. A few white dots appear on the screen on a totally black background. What could this possibly be? Gradually, these dots become many more and we soon realise that what we are seeing is indeed the reflection of the moon on the sea at night. Extremely minimalist music (by Siegfried A. Fruhauf himself) accompanies us throughout the screening, often reminding us precisely of the sound of the waves of the sea.

As already mentioned, therefore, in Mare Imbrium it is the moon the great protagonist. Similarly, however, what the director reflects on is first and foremost the concept of projection. The image of the moon projected onto the surface of the sea, when there is no other source of light to ‘disturb’ the event, is filmed first digitally, then analogically. The sea, in turn, becomes effectively a projection canvas. And so, once again, our beloved cinema comes into play. This wonderful spectacle is in turn projected onto a movie screen. Cinema and metacinema. But how is the world of the seventh art changing?

In Mare Imbrium, Siegfried A. Fruhauf knows exactly what he wants to communicate to us. We understand this immediately at the moment when the digital images turn into analogue images, and then become digital again according to a precise elliptical structure. Nowadays, the way of understanding filmmaking has changed a lot compared to what it was in the past. Yet, the fascination of films shot on film remains unchanged. What awaits us in the future?

Mare Imbrium does not (apparently) want to give any certain answers about this, but in inviting us to reflect on the matter, it offers us a spectacle of magnetic charm and undoubted beauty. Often there is no need for special effects to remain as if hypnotised in front of a movie screen. Siegfried A. Fruhauf knows this well, and in staging this precious little film of his, he has paid attention to every detail. His Mare Imbrium is a true visual and auditory experience. A short film more relevant than ever. A sincere and reverent declaration of love to the seventh art.

Original title: Mare Imbrium
Directed by: Siegfried A. Fruhauf
Country/year: Austria / 2024
Running time: 12’
Genre: experimental
Screenplay: Siegfried A. Fruhauf
Cinematography: Siegfried A. Fruhauf
Produced by: Siegfried A. Fruhauf

Info: the page of Mare Imbrium on the website of the Diagonale; the page of Mare Imbrium on the website of the sixpackfilm