Nils Vest is een Deense filmmaker en een van de oprichters (en inwoners) van de hippie-enclave Christiania in Kopenhagen. Hij maakte meer dan 50 documentaires, vooral over sociale strijd en architectuur. Vanavond vertonen we, onder de noemer 'Christiania, In Search Of Utopia', drie van zijn films: Five Days for Peace (1973, 37’), Law and Order in Christiania 1 (1974, 8’) en Law and Order in Christiania 2 (2003, 28’).
In aanwezigheid van de maker zelf.
Dit programma is gecureerd door Mohanad Yaqubi als deel van zijn KASK-masterseminarie “The Other’s Cinema aka Film Collectives...Unite” in samenwerking met Subversive Film. Mohanads tekst over de regisseur en het filmprogramma vind je hieronder.
When examining systematic dismissal of certain social movements, such as the case of Christiania in Copenhagen, it probes questioning of the reasons and motives behind such ignorance. This small area/project in the heart of Copenhagen has been marked as a community of hippies, vagabonds, anarchists, rendering it a small and insignificant matter and movement. However, Christiania was built on a project of social change with a clear political agenda, from an active and progressive position engaging with questions of police violence, fascist politicians, militarizing the society and nuclear dangers, with creative and artistic ways in reimagining collective participation in the public sphere.
This film program offers a chance to stop and look at one of the many 1968 turbulent moments within the European context: the creation of a space of freedom that challenged the old structures that favored capitalist investors agendas through unjust urban planning and population controls. The program shows three films directed by the Danish filmmaker Nils Vest, tracking the history of activism and social struggle in Christiania. Vest is one of the first graduates of the Danish Film School, and from the early days of his career, he committed his camera and work to social struggles, within Denmark and around the world, creating a model of an internationalist film culture that went beyond classical geopolitical questions.
Five Days for Peace (1973, 37 min)
In June 1973, NATO holds a ministerial meeting in Copenhagen. During the day of the meeting, divisions of soldiers appear in the street scene, where they observe and fight NATO's "inner enemies" with remarkable zeal. In the evening, there is a party in Ekcerserhallen on the boatmen's bars at Christianshavn, where the soldiers are accommodated.
At first, people realize that they are not real soldiers, but the theater group Solvognen, who - based in Christiania - demonstrates in its own unconventional way against the bargains NATO has prepared for all member-states. The theater group SOLVOGNEN started in 1969 as a sound and light collective. In 1972, it transformed and expanded into a real theater group, with the launch of the 'COMMUNITY' in Copenhagen Town Hall Square during the large anti-EF demonstration on October 1. Since then, a number of street theater actions followed, the group dissolved in 1983.
Law and Order in Christian 1 (1974, 8 min)
In the spring of 1974, the bourgeois government, with Defense Minister Brøndum, planned a veritable campaign against the newly established sanctuary Christiania. No less than 60 houses would have been demolished, with the grounds that they were flammable and in poor construction condition. This little "agit-prop" film was produced to explain the Christianity's own perception of the matter.
Law and Order in Christiania 2 (2003, 28 min)
The new film about Christiania in the spring of 2003, where the government threatens the sanctuary with closure, and where the Christians are mobilizing. Discover the refuge's internal discussions about the hash market, the signature collection, the Danish People's Party lie, a nightly police raid, the blue hashbod that is left to the National Museum, support from outside people and much more. it's a film also a cultural battle, retention of the ideals of hippie time, based on love, honest arguments and non-violence.
Born in 1943, Nils Vest is a Danish documentary film director and producer married to actor Britta Lillesøe. He graduated from the Danish Film School in 1970. Between the years 1973 and 1980 he was a member of the theatre group Solvognen. He has been living in Christiania since the 1970’s.
Nils directed and produced a large number of documentary films with historical, artistic or social content. He has been involved in the struggle to preserve the old environments in Copenhagen including Christiania, which he has made three movies about.