Director and photographer: Yann Arthus-Bertrand
In 2009, Thomas A. Østbye won the Gold Chair, the main prize, at the short film festival in Grimstad for his 25 minutes long documentary Human. In the film, he had a selection of very different people talk about their lives against a neutral, black background, in a Jørgen Leth-inspired documentary with a distinct humanist message. And that caused the spectator to reflect on what it means to be human.
Large scale. Østbye's film has several similarities to Yann Arthus-Bertrand's cinema current Human than just the title. In just over three hours of documentary, the French photojournalist and filmmaker lets people from all over the world tell their stories right into the camera lens, against a neutral, black background – albeit in closer and more consistent close-ups than in the Norwegian film. Here, too, the result is a documentary that becomes a kind of appeal to the viewer's empathy and humanity, as well as a consideration of humanity in general and the importance of humanity in particular.
The scope, however, is considerably greater in Arthus-Bertrand's films, which. . .
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