In 1948, Paul Celan, a concentration camp survivor and esteemed post-war poet, met Ingeborg Bachmann, a writer whose father was a Nazi. They met again on just one more occasion, nonetheless generating almost 20 years of long-distance correspondence before Celan’s suicide in 1971. Inspired by fact and fiction, where document and literature intersect in the letters, Beckerman’s film is a cross between observational documentary and essay film. She kept the camera rolling between takes of two actors reading the letters, capturing palpable on-screen chemistry and evoking a contemporary romance from the historical source material.
Interviews: Interview with Ruth Beckermann at Cinema Scope
Filmography: Those Who Go Those Who Stay (2013), American Passages (2011), Zorros Bar Mizwa (2006), Homemad(e) (2001), East of War (1996)