Directed by Directed by Stephanie Spray and Pacho Velez
118 min | 2013 | USA | Not Rated
Screens in English and Nepali with English subtitles
How can a film that is exclusively shot in one-takes with a static camera on a cable car in Nepal also be one of this year’s most celebrated cinematic achievements, especially considering that it is only three months old? A hint: if you saw Leviathan, which won the New Vision award at last year’s CPH:DOX, you also know that Harvard Sensory Ethnography Lab makes some of the most cinematically advanced films right now.
Surprising, constantly varied and, meditative, MANAKAMANA consists, in all its simplicity, of just eleven scenes lasting ten minutes each, which corresponds to both the length of a 16mm reel and a one-way trip on the cable car that takes pilgrims and tourists up to a temple in the mountains and back again. With each tour, a new set of travelers comes on board the small cabin including; a single woman, a married couple, three young rockers, and three old ladies—whose common husband couldn’t join them on the trip. “How beautiful,” one lone lady says, to herself, as she looks out of the window. Each person sits and we look at them without interruption during the 10-minute journey. If you give yourself the time to take this trip, you will be rewarded with a rare experience, which will come back to you again and again.
Winner: Special Jury Prize and International Film Critics Award for Best First Feature – 2013 Locarno International Film Festival; Nominee – 2014 Independent Spirit Truer Than Fiction Award.
If free UMFA visitor parking and the adjacent pay lot are full, filmgoers may park in the LDS Institute lot or the lot at Guardsman Way-500 South. UTA bus and TRAX stops are also a short walk to the Museum. Visit http://umfa.utah.edu/directions for more information.