Direction: Naomi Uman
This film explores the idea of the consistency of land use over time. In the exact location of where the filmmaker is living and realizing this project, trypillian people lived over 5,000 year ago. A modern day, post soviet brick factory in the village uses the exact same process to make bricks that the trypillian people used to make pots. Through this same process, and the unexplained burning of the trypillian homes, we have fired clay remnants of their presence in this village in very large numbers. A reknowned local archeologist talks about these people and their relationship to land, clay and black gold.
Naomi Uman entered the world of experimental documentary with the controversial diptych made by Leche and Mala leche (1998). Her unpleasing portrait of a cow-breeding Hispanic family on both sides of the Mexican-US border sparked debate on how to portray such communities. One year later, she released the caustic Removed, which soon became a reference of appropriation (and manipulation) film.
Uman has spent the past four years in Ukraine, which her great grandparents had left in search for America, the promised land. She set off on the reverse journey in an attempt to recover the experience of her forebears, which she recorded in the seven-film saga The Ukrainian Time Machine (3’ to 80’ each movie). The last part is a video journal Uman kept during the four years it took her to complete her project. Still a work in progress, the saga is having its world premiere at Punto de Vista. The fact that Naomi Uman will be a member of the Punta de Vista 2011 jury is an honour to the festival’s organisers. The news that The Ukrainian Time Machine will be shown at the festival and introduced by the director herself is reason for moviegoers to celebrate.