A black room, a chair, a couch and two men. They do not speak to each other, and what they don’t say, the silence reveals.
Hi Maren how does it feel to having Talking Cure part of this years ÉCU Film Festival?
It feels good if someone appreciates the work you do. I am very happy that our film will be screened at ÉCU.
Are there any nerves ahead of the screening?
No, not that I know of it yet. I hope the audience will enjoy a short trip into an experimental psychoanalytic session.
Can you tell me a little bit about Talking Cure, how did this film come about?
In TALKING CURE we are paraphrasing a psychoanalytic session. The input comes from my own experience gathered throughout the past 10 years; lying on a couch and talking with quite a few psychoanalysts around the world. Especially Lacanian Psychoanalysts. Most of them were utterly serious but some did have a great sense of humour. I believe that you can only get through life with a sort of happiness if you develop a sense of humour, especially about yourself. That is what I would like to achieve: not to take myself and what I do too seriously. Which does not mean that it would be meaningless? But maybe pointless; like therapy after all is. For me ‘‘pointlessness’’ has a positive connotation. I think it would be terrible if life would have a purpose. I believe that it is important that therapy does not have an aim. It is an end in itself. I guess most behavioural therapists will disagree with this point of view.
What was the inspiration behind this experimental film?
As mentioned above, the main inspiration is real-world experience with psychoanalysis.
What was the most challenging part of bringing Talking Cure to life?
As with any sort of comedy, it is very hard to bring a sense of humour into the film without it becoming silly. I often had doubts if this piece of work can be done in the right way. I think we managed pretty well.
"Everyone has to make his/her own mistakes..."
What was the most valuable lesson you've taken from making this film?
The biggest lesson taken there was to be patient. It was never my strong side, but thanks to this film I got again a bit better.
Have you always been interested in filmmaking?
I was around 15 years old when I started to watch films that appeared to be unusual. I remember seeing ‘‘Mulholland Drive’’ and ‘‘Week End’’. I was very disturbed after having seen these films, but it made me want to watch more films. And then, of course, I wanted to become a filmmaker. In the end, I ended up studying philosophy.
How did you get into filmmaking?
I got into filmmaking thanks to the German filmmaker Dieter Reifarth. A couple of years back he was working on a huge documentary project, HAUS TUGENDHAT. And as it was too much work for him alone I asked if I could help him. So I learned how to edit, lead interviews, manage the post-production etc. Everything I know about filmmaking I learned from him. I owe him a lot. From the beginning, he treated me as an equal colleague, even though I had no experience at all.
Has your approach to your films changed much since you started?
Yes. In the beginning, I thought I would also like to shoot feature films. But after years of watching plenty of films by Ozu, Bresson, Leconte, Fellini, Minelli, Kieslowski, Capra etc. I realized that everything has been said about topics I am interested in. And I would never be able to do it ‘‘better’’.
What has been the best piece of advice you've been given?
Not to be satisfied too quickly. Even if you think that what you did is good, try to make it even better.
Now you can be reflective do you have any advice you would offer a fellow filmmaker?
I think giving advice is not really helpful. Everyone has to make his/her own mistakes and try to learn from them. Well, maybe one sort of advice: It is important to try out things without getting tired of failing and trying again.
And finally, what do you hope people will take away from this film?
A smile and a slight feeling of discomfort.