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Sylvain L'Espérance

Sylvain L'Espérance

Canada / Website

Biography

Born in Montreal in 1961, Sylvain L'Espérance studied film and visual arts. For the past 25 years, he has travelled widely, from Quebec to Mali to Greece. He has directed nearly a dozen films that combine direct cinema with experimental research to explore reality through a poetic lens. His films question our relationships with outsiders and marginalized communities. They give voice to migrants, workers, artisans, sailors, fishermen, shepherds, the unemployed and the homeless. These voices are carried by street theatre, song and poetry and merge into a political cry that speaks the unspoken. This liberated voice is one of raw and spirited power that stands firm against capitalism and its devastating consequences.

L'Espérance's films are selected and presented by prestigious documentary festivals around the world. Many of his films have won major awards. In 2010, Intérieurs du Delta (Into the Delta) won the award for Best Director at the Festival Dei Popoli in Florence. In 2013, the Munich Dok.fest awarded Sur le Rivage du monde (Standing on the Edge of the World) the International Competition Award.


Filmography:

Les écarts perdus (Canada, 1988)
Les printemps incertains (53´, Canada, 1992) Un film de cinéaste (Canada, 1995) - collective film
Pendant que tombent les arbres (Canada, 1996)
Le temps quíl fait (Canada, 1997)
La main invisible (77´, Canada, 2002)
Une fleuve humain/ The River Where We Live (92´, Canada, 2006)
Intérieurs du delta (77´, Canada/Mali, 2009)
Sur le rivage du monde (106', Canada, 2012)

Bamako_1

Bamako, temps suspendu

Bamako, temps suspendu (Orig.) / 2014 / Canada / 30 min

Two musicians perform in a courtyard in Bamako, Mali. A quest for harmony; knowing glances and comforting presences; time marches on.

Detail…

L'Espérance

Haiku - Sylvain L'Espérance + René Roberge

Haiku - Sylvain L'Espérance + René Roberge (Orig.) / Canada / 1 min

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Into_the_delta_1

Into the Delta

Intérieurs du delta (Orig.) / 2009 / Canada / 76 min

The life of a family of fishermen, in the inland delta of the Niger river in Mali, is stricken by the effects of globalization: the rise of the price of oil and basic goods, the collapse of fish stocks and the signs of global warming.

Detail…

Les_printemps_incertains_EN_1

Shadows of Spring

Les printemps incertains (EN version) (Orig.) / 1992 / Canada / 53 min

Emerging from the multiple perspectives of this film, a memory of a neighbourhood is recreated which tells of the fragility of working class habitats residents and workers from southwest Montréal recount its tragic history: The immigration and settling of the Irish in the 19th century the expropriation of Griffintown the destruction of Goose village. The industrial decline of Pointe-Saint-Charles and surroundings.

Detail…

Les_printemps_incertains_FR_1

Shadows of Spring (FR version)

Les printemps incertains (FR version) (Orig.) / 1992 / Canada / 53 min

Emerging from the multiple perspectives of this film, a memory of a neighbourhood is recreated which tells of the fragility of working class habitats residents and workers from southwest Montréal recount its tragic history: The immigration and settling of the Irish in the 19th century the expropriation of Griffintown the destruction of Goose village. The industrial decline of Pointe-Saint-Charles and surroundings.

Detail…

Standing_on_the_Edge_1

Standing on the Edge of the World

Sur le rivage du monde (Orig.) / 2012 / Canada / 105 min

After several failed attempts to reach Europe, César, Félou and Érik find themselves in Bamako, Mali – deported but still driven to pursue their dreams. Meanwhile Amih fights with unshakeable determination to escape a life of unfulfillment and forge a brighter future for herself and her children.

Detail…

The_River_Where_We_Live_1

The River Where We Live

Un fleuve humain (Orig.) / 2006 / Canada / 92 min

The interior delta of the Niger River in Mali. The river crosses a vast plain in the heart of the Sahel. It is a vivid patchwork of canals, rivers, lakes, islands, seas, prairies and flood zones. Throughout this territory, human societies have learned to live together, in a symbiotic relationship with the cycles and movements of the river. During the dry season, as water levels began receding, I went to encounter the people of the delta - artisans, merchants, navigators, herders and fishermen - leaving in search of a human portrait of the river...

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News

A Showcase of Asian Documentary Film Jewels? TIDF!

A Showcase of Asian Documentary Film Jewels? TIDF!

The interest in all things Asian is growing faster than capital markets in the global world. That goes for documentary films as well. The contemporary production of Asian documentary filmmakers is regularly presented by Taiwan International Documentary Festival.

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- 12.9.2016 -

Gulîstan, Land of Roses Wins Prestigious Doc Alliance Selection Award at Locarno IFF

Gulîstan, Land of Roses Wins Prestigious Doc Alliance Selection Award at Locarno IFF

On Sunday, August 7, young director Zaynê Akyol became the 9th winner of the unique Doc Alliance Selection Award that is awarded since 2008 by the international Doc Alliance platform. The Kurdish director based in Canada received the award during an award ceremony at Locarno IFF. Along with the award, the filmmaker also received financial support of 5.000 euro for her future film.

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- 8.8.2016 -

Doc Alliance Selection Award 2016: Fresh Documentary Talents at the Upcoming Ninth DAS Awards

Doc Alliance Selection Award 2016: Fresh Documentary Talents at the Upcoming Ninth DAS Awards

Ever since 2008, Doc Alliance has been organising an international award intended especially for first-time directors. The Doc Alliance Selection Award helps up-and-coming filmmaking talents to put their name on the documentary map, providing a prize of EUR 5,000 to support their future projects. In 2016, Doc Alliance again nominated 7 outstanding films that will be vying for the 9th annual Doc Alliance Selection Award. The name of the winning title will be announced on August 7, 2016 during an official ceremony at the Locarno International Film Festival.

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- 13.6.2016 -

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