Dana Ranga, Germany, 2003
Documentary, colour, 87'
English language

Sunday 13 April 2008
4.10 pm
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“I'm a space person”, says Story Musgrave, one of the most versatile NASA astronauts, also known as 'Dr. Details'. Before he became an astronaut, Story was a mathematician, a chemist, a trauma surgeon and a pilot, an experimental parachutist and a poet. He had the longest career as an astronaut worldwide and flew into space more often than anyone else: six times. What made this man start out on such a journey? What fuelled his strength, his curiosity, his drive? What did he look for in space and what did he find out there? A genuine traveller speaks up about the way in which space can change a human being - a personal account of cosmic storms of feeling and adventures of perception. “Space is a be not a do”.

"...You've never seen 'space' so well evoked and perhaps not solitude either." (Vancouver International Film Festival)



Special Mention for Innovating Documentary Film Language, Marseille 2003
Youth Jury Award, Leipzig 2003
Gold Remi Award, Houston 2004

Dana Ranga

Berlin-based Dana Ranga describes herself as a poet who sometimes likes to use film language. She has published poetry in literary magazines in the US, Germany, Switzerland, Romania and elsewhere. Her book object Calendar 1996 was bought by the Museum of Modern Art, New York. Her films were screened in major documentary festivals and broadcast internationally, included in thematic programmes in art museums and presented as part of dance shows. A fragment of Story was even broadcast deep into space as part of a 'space' theme-day run by French-German channel ARTE.

Born in Bucharest on Astronaut Street (Strada Cosmonautilor), Dana Ranga grew up with space. As a child, she spent holidays at her granny's in the countryside, and played with her favourite sheep... Laika. And when she encountered poetry for the first time, she fell in love with a classic of Romanian poetry: Mihai Eminescu's “Evening Star”, a poem about a prince descending on a ray of light to meet his beloved on Earth.

For Dana Ranga, space is linked to poetry and everyday life, rather than to science. Like any uprooted artist, she is herself a sort of astronaut suspended in between her birth-place and her adoptive home. Her films Story and Cosmonaut Polyakov (Germany, 2007, 110'), both about astronauts as 'exiles on earth', might be inscriptions of her own dislocation. We don't get to see a single rocket in Story - this is space travel beyond planting flags and collecting rocks, a film portrait, a philosophical reflection, and a mesmerizing piece of cinema.

Cosmonaut Polyakov awarded Best Documentary at IT'S ALL TRUE - International Documentary Festival Sao Paulo

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