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De 10 Geboden : P®ivé (Private) : Heddy Honigmann

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Published on Jan 31, 2008

The film P®ivé is part of a documentary series based on the Ten Commandments, made for Dutch public television (IKON). P®ivé is about the commandment 'Thou shalt not steal' and illustrates the secret desire to possess... and therefore, sometimes, to steal. In P®ivé hands may adeptly pick-pocket a wallet, emphatically protest, play an illegal street game or hold a microphone. Not only do we see an old-aged lady who 'does' it too in the form of fare-dodging, but also a magician who initiates us into the diversionary tactics of pick-pocketing, and a crook who has no regrets. Director Heddy Honigmann herself turns out to also know a few things about stealing. Victims of various forms of theft tell their side of the story: your sense of security can be stolen, as well as a heart or a life. Meanwhile a stand-up comedian tells jokes about stealing and ultimately draws the viewer's attention to the greatest theft of all times: God himself.

Heddy Honigmann's films are distinguished by their beautifully composed images and elegant structures, but what makes the Dutch filmmaker's work unique is the manner in which she gains access to the farthest reaches of her subjects' souls. Honigmann assesses the human condition using objects, poetry, and music to open the floodgates of memories and stories of such far-flung people as cab drivers from Lima, Bosnian widows, peacekeepers from around the world, and illegal immigrants in Paris.

An endlessly curious offscreen presence, Honigmann teases out the complex, astonishingly resilient, and often funny aspects of people's amazing lives. Her questions are direct and compassionate but persistent—like those of an old, dear friend. Her fiction features and shorts, while less well-known, are characterized by the same complex yet straightforward presentation of images and emotions buried beneath the surface of quotidian existence as are her documentaries, and are no less afraid of dealing with taboo subject matter.

director : Heddy Honigmann
camera : Gregor Meerman
sound : Rik Meier
editor : Patrick Minks
production company : Pieter van Huystee Film
format : Digi Beta, VHS
duration : 50 minutes

www.pvhfilm.nl

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