• Joanna Helander, Bo Persson
    • Sweden
    • 1994
    • 60 min
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    The photographer and writer Joanna Helander was born in 1948 in a Polish-German-Jewish family in Silesia, the border lands of southern Poland. While a student at the university of Krakow in 1968, she was arrested and sentenced to prison for having protested against the invasion of Czechoslovakia. In 1971 she emigrated to Sweden. During the 1970's and 1980's she made numerous journeys to her native country, and in pictures and writings depicted the complex life in Poland. In RETURNING Joanna Helander travels to Poland and Germany trying to discover what happened to those of her Jewish relatives who disappeared during World War II. On her travels she keeps up a continuous imaginary dialogue with her dead father, Gerard K. His voice guides her on this journey through the apocalyptic world of the Holocaust. The film is not just a film of mourning, it is equally an account of hope and survival. It reflects the absurdity and on occasion the joy of the human condition. The cinematic construction of the film is an elaborate interplay of pictures, original music, dialogues and poetic narration. Together they are a mixture dramatic, lyrical, grotesque, absurd and humorous elements.


    • 60 min
    • color
    • 16mm
    Joanna Helander, Bo Persson
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