Last night I went to a screening of Somewhere to Disappear at The New School, presented by the Aperture Foundation. The film is by young French filmmakers Laure Flammarion and Arnaud Uyttenhove, and it follows Magnum photographer Alec Soth as he treks across America in search of men trying to disappear from society (these photos later became part of the book project Broken Manual).
The New School auditorium was overcapacity, with a strangely celebrity-packed room (sitting within two rows of us were Natalie Portman, Benjamin Millepied, Macaulay Culkin, and Ryan Gosling). The film itself was incredibly well done and the Q&A with Soth and the filmmakers was a treat. Also of note is that the score was done by L’Aiglon, who often tour with Phoenix.
If you want the film to be screened in your town, let the filmmakers know on their Facebook page. View the trailer here.
What draws me into this work and these people is how it makes you realize how vastly spectral the human condition really is. There are so many people on this planet living completely different lives with completely different mindsets that it almost makes it seem as though the possibilities in how we exist are infinite. That may sound like a radical contradiction as the individuals introduced in this film are often the products of abuse and neglect, but it’s the feeling the I get nonetheless.
After the screening Soth spoke much of fantasy, and his fantasy of living like his subjects. His subjects are the people that dislike society and being around other people, yet crave human interaction as evinced by their interactions with Soth. It’s a wild and seemingly complex duality, but maybe we can boil it down to a simple fact: in the end all we really want as humans is for people to care about us.
Update: Alec Soth posted this on his Facebook wall, love that man!
I HIGHLY recommend this film and although Adrian and I sat second row and center I’m heartbroken to say we somehow did not see Ryan Gosling OR Natalie Portman