Log #6

by Lautaro Garcia Candela

We continue. Yesterday we were invited to a dialogue with the German magazine Revolver and its Argentine cousin, Las Naves. They both have a rather particular format and regularity. They are like small bibles, little books that fit in a pocket and come out two times a year. They have the same objective: to give the floor to filmmakers against that widespread prejudice that they do not know how to write. It is impossible for me to read Revolver – entirely in German – but according to the Germans they are against a certain interpretative criticism, and therefore the magazine feeds on interviews and internal conversations. Its writers are various; all filmmakers or people involved in the production of films. The magazine was designed at the university as an answer to the absence of publications on cinema that existed in Germany at the end of the eighties (a piece of information impossible to prove, but we trust Nicolas and Saskia, who represent this magazine). Its first issue included a long interview with Lars Von Trier, who gave them the Dogma 95 manifest for them to publish, unknown until them: they were destined for success.
Las Naves has already six issues, each one with a particular inner rule. The first one is exclusively made of manifests that were requested to Argentine filmmakers as well as from other countries. There are other issues about trips, unfinished films, methods. It is a pleasure to read them because of that defamiliarization that supposes reading directors in such a direct manner, as if they were revealing a secret with a little shyness. The selection of articles is sharp, with a criterion that when paid a little attention to appears impeccable.
Afterwards, the magazines made the obligatory questions about their interior functioning, what left me thinking about the possibilities of a(nother) film magazine in paper. The German part maintained that its pages should be totally free of advertisements and therefore of obligations. They would rather be poor, they said. It is clear that this is also because of a question of aesthetics, considering the special care that they pay to illustrations: each issue shares a line in common with the film stills that appear in the magazine (at the same time different from the films that are written about). The topic of the last issue was people in film. There are images of Taxi driver, Inglorious bastards, The thin red line and some others I still need to recognize. The next question, which nobody formulated but was becoming implicit, was how to fund these specific avant-garde magazines. They said they had editorial arrangements and the like, I do not want to delve into technical details. In Las Naves that does not happen because the directors of the magazine are the owners – up to my knowledge – of the same printer where the magazines come from. Special circumstances that mean they do not have to face the market directly, a hostile environment for this type of publications. In this side of the world we are much more at the mercy of the elements.

Round table with Saskia Walker, Nicolas Wackerbarth // Revolver Film Magazine Cecilia Barrionuevo, Julieta Mortati, Edgardo Dielike // Las Naves Mariángela Martínez Restrepo // Talent Press Coordinator/Programmer Translator, Clara Picasso

Spanish version