The Salamander Complex

Year2014 Duration80 min. DirectorStéphane Manchematin, Serge Steyer WriterStéphane Manchematin, Serge Steyer PhotographyStéphane Manchematin, Serge Steyer EditorStéphane Manchematin, Serge Steyer SoundStéphane Manchematin, Serge Steyer MusicMuckrackers

Sound editor: Thomas Gastinel
Sound mix: Lionel Thiriet
Color correction: Color correction: Christine Szymkowiak 


2014 Festival de Cinéma de Douarnenez France / 2014 Etats Généraux du film documentaire de Lussas France / 2014 Festival International du Film Nancy-Lorraine France (Special Jury Prize) 

International premiere

A glass frame, some wax wings, a tale sculpted in dust on the glass, a mask of bees wings. The artist, Patrick Neu lives alone in a remote island village to the north of the Vosges, far from all of the central focal points of the world of art. He creates slowly and carefully with the patience inherited from the primitive Flemish artists, which whom he dialogues explicitly in works that border the ephemeral and tend towards a rare perfection.  One day, the director of the Tokyo Palace in Paris pays him a visit: after following his work for fifteen years, he wants to commission him with his first individual exhibition. He accepts but will not change his method in any way. In the background, the old truth of the salamander, above all, an artist should be able to hide and keep his mystery. 


35000 RENNES 

Stéphane Manchematin, Serge Steyer


Stéphane Manchematin works on forms and ways to write documentaries for twenty years. He has edited, written and directed documentaries for public service channels (France 3, France 5, Arte) and radio (France Culture). His documentaries are about two main themes: societal issues (elderlies suicides, societal depression, power…) and art. He teaches cinema and audio-visual education at the Université de Lorraine.


  • À voix nue : Roland Leroy (2012)
  • C’est un joli nom camarade (2011)
  • Vous avez dit chef-d’œuvre! (with Jean-Paul Fargier, 2011)
  • Jean-Marie Rausch et moi (2011)
  • Et si nos villes avaient des ailes (with J-Baptiste Mathieu, 2010)
  • Centre Pompidou-Metz, le grand Meccano (with Jean-Paul Fargier, 2010) 
  • Ceci n’est pas un chef-d’œuvre! (2010)
  • Au pays des Diogène (2010)
  • Les mots d'Aurélie (2009)
  • Le Centre Pompidou-Metz, chronique(s) à géométrie variable (2009)
  • Finitude (2008)


Trained as production manager on the first co-production of La Sept/Arte and Agat Films, Serge Steyer directed his first movie, Ried, in 1989. This fiction, produced by Gilles Sandoz was very well received in festivals but he finally chose the documentary path. He directed around thirty films (for and with the public service channels, France 2, France 3, France 5, Arte).  


  • Huis clos pour un quartier (2007)    

Promoted by
Gobierno de Navarra
Organized by
With the aid of
Con la financiación del Gobierno de España. Instituto de la Cinematografía y las Artes Audiovisuales Acción Cultural Española Plan de Recuperación, Transformación y Resiliencia Financiado por la Unión Europea. NexGenerationEU

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