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Part of SFFILM Festival


Directed by Victor Kossakovsky

14 Apr
Sun, Apr 14, 2019 at 8:00 pm PT


The power of nature is captured with cutting-edge technology and cinematic virtuosity in this paean to water. Victor Kossakovsky (¡Vivan Las Antipodas!, Festival 2012) takes us from Russia’s semi-frozen Lake Baikal to glacier calving in Greenland to the hurricane-tossed streets of Miami, forcefully conveying the raw power of water around the globe with 96 frames-per-second cinematography, waterproof cameras that delve and bob below the surface, and spectacular sound design. Through visual awe rather than expert narration or statistics, Aquarela delivers its ecological message loud and clear.

“Words, however rhapsodic, can’t really do justice to the beauty of the cinematography here, captured by Kossakovsky and Ben Bernhard, which throughout is framed with a painterly eye that emphasizes textures and subtle plays of color, especially in the arctic interludes, where white interplays with a wide gamut of blues, teals and greens that are tinged with pinks. The wide-angle lens creates surfaces where it’s difficult to judge scale given everything seems to be in focus at once. It’s only the intrusion of, say, a flock of gulls, a house on the hill, or a person traversing the edge of the frame that reveals how vast — or tiny — any given landscape really is.” – Leslie Felperin, The Hollywood Reporter

Aquarela is one of the most frightening and persuasive movies I’ve ever seen about the destruction created by climate change. With incredibly cinematic imagery and a succinct narrative conveyed by editing instead of talking heads or voiceover, the film depicts how global warming turns peaceful ice into vengeful tidal waves. ‘Immersive’ is the best word to describe the experience of watching the unmissable Aquarela, which you must treat with same as-large-and-as-loud-as-possible dedication you do for blockbusters or repertory viewings of 2001: A Space Odyssey.” – Nick Allen, RogerEbert.com

Director Victor Kossakovsky

Leningrad-based documentarian Victor Kossakovsky made his feature debut in 1992 with Belovy, the winner of two prizes at the Amsterdam International Documentary Film Festival. Pavel i Lyalya (1999), winner of a special jury prize at the Amsterdam International Documentary Film Festival; Hush! (2003); Svyato (2005), recipient of a Libraries Award – Mention at Cinéma du Réel; and ¡Vivan las antipodas! (Festival 2012), winner of a Cinematic Vision Award at the Silverdocs Documentary Festival, are among his other works.



Film Details

Year 2018

Language Russian, English, Spanish

Runtime 90

Country UK/Germany

Director Victor Kossakovsky

Producer Aimara Reques, Heino Deckert, Sigrid Dyekjær

Writer Victor Kossakovsky, Aimara Reques

Editor Victor Kossakovsky, Molly Malene Stensgaard, Ainara Vera

Cinematographer Victor Kossakovsky, Ben Bernhard

Music Eicca Toppinen