SENGIRĖ THE ANCIENT WOODS
Life in Lithuania’s primeval forest is full of surprises. Crows pester a raptor, black grouse perform their courtship dance and insects hatch in the snow. Only one solitary human can beseen – as abruptly as he materializes he disappears again. He has no business being in this unspoiled ecosystem. Individual episodes introduce the wild inhabitants of the woods – the film’s approach to editing and composition often results in humorous scenes, but also portrays brutally violent encounters as well.
Before he became active as a filmmaker, director and cameraman Mindaugas Survila completed a degree in biology, but instead of bombarding the viewer with facts or moral commentary here, this poetic work relies solely on the power of simple observation. In visually stunning images enriched by subtle sound design the forest creatures take to the stage. The result is a magical wildlife documentary in the style of Slow Cinema that manages just fine without accompanying music or voice-over narration.
Trained as a biologist at Vilnius University, he is successfully pursuing a career in documentary filmmaking. In 2012 his film THE FIELD OF MAGIC received the national Lithuanian cinema award Silver Crane for the best documentary feature. As a cinematographer he has also collaborated with well-known film directors such as Šarūnas Bartas, Sergey Loznitsa and Audrius Stonys.
2011 // STEBUKLŲ LAUKAS / THE FIELD OF MAGIC2017 // SENGIRĖ / THE ANCIENT WOODS