VIDEO. “The Zone of Interest”, an artistic approach told by director Jonathan Glazer


Video length: 3 min.

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Jonathan Glazer’s new film, “The Zone of Interest”, presented at the Cannes Film Festival this year, opens with a sequence of 3 minutes 30 with a black background. The director explains his artistic approach behind this choice.

At the heart of this new feature film by Jonathan Glazer, the viewer follows the story of Rudolf Höss, a commander of the Auschwitz-Birkenau camp and his family, living very close to this place of horror. And to begin this story, the director favors hearing over sight. “When you sit in the cinema, the lights go out, you expect the movie to start straight away. This film starts very straight, but it first speaks to the ears and not to the eyes”. says the director. By this choice, Jonathan Glazer wishes to immerse the viewer closer to the story. “It’s up to you to fill (the void). It is up to the viewer to complete it. The film needs the viewer to complete it”.

The desired experience: being immersed

With this black screen of 3 minutes 30, the director wants the viewer to travel. “There is something for me which evokes the tides, the movement of the waves, in this music which becomes a bird’s song, then which gives way to the image. We find ourselves immersed there, as if we opened our eyes in this beautiful meadow, and we see a family having a picnic. Then for 1h45, the images parade and tell a story, the horror”. Great attention is also paid to the film’s music, composed by Mica Levi. “Mica Levi wrote wonderful songs. We understood that the music was important to prepare for the film, as an invitation to immerse yourself in a world”. says Jonathan Glazer.

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