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BASQUE BALL, SKIN AGAINST STONE

Spain, 2004 (MIFF 2004, Documentaries)

Director: Julio Medem

Basque Ball, Skin Against Stone (La Pelota Vasca, la Piel Contra la Piedra) Spain

'This film aims to be an invitation to discussion. This film has been conceived with respect towards all opinions. This film is independent. It is due entirely to personal initiative. This film declares its solidarity with those who suffer violence related to the Basque conflict. This film will always miss those who have not wanted to participate. With these words Julio Medem (Sex and Lucia; Earth, MIFF 1998) prefaces a remarkable documentary on the Basques, their country, conflicts, language, culture and history. With a vast array of participants, from novelist Bernardo Atxaga to musician Txetxo Bengoetxea, politician Carlos Garaikoetxer, and the forgotten many whose lives have been indelibly marked by violence or the threat of violence, this is a dizzyingly complex and captivatingly realised venture.

'Both epic and intimate, Basque Ball is the fascinating work of a master filmmaker. He brilliantly grounds this study of a particular geographical landscape into a far-reaching contemplation of issues around identity and nationality, globalisation and local cultures, human rights and the nation-state, language and power, presence and absence.'London Film Festival

D Julio Medem P Julio Medem, Koldo Zuazua WS Alicia Produce L Spanish, Basque, English, French w/English subtitles TD 35mm/Col/2003/115mins

Julio Medem was born in San Sebastian, Spain in 1958. Films include: The Red Squirrel (1993), The Lovers of the Arctic Circle (1998).

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