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Settled in the middle of nowhere in the Southern Ural region in Russia, the film is the story of people living in one of the spots on Earth most contaminated by radiation. Unknown to a wide public, this region was repeatedly irradiated by different accidents at the nuclear facility Mayak, which was the first plant for the production of fissile material for nuclear weapons in the Soviet Union and which is still in operation. The filmmaker's attempt is to find a cinematic translation for a danger that is not perceptible nor visual, and to capture the strength of people who have to cope with it. Sebastian Mez's film was screened at the 63rd Berlinale in 2013.

SEBASTIAN MEZ, born 1982 in Essen, Germany. After graduating high school, he did a one-year internship at Caspari film and then worked as a freelancer. In 2007 he shot his first documentary DO THE RIGHT THING, which premiered at the Max Ophüls Festival 2008. Since 2007 he has been studying at Filmakademie Baden-Württemberg. A LETTER FROM GERMANY was awarded at Visions du Réel Filmfestival Nyon 2011 and at Crossing Europe 2012 (Fedeora Award). // Films (selected): BRASA (2011, short), EIN BRIEF AUS DEUTSCHLAND (A Letter from Germany, 2011, doc; CE '12), METAMORPHOSEN (2013, doc)

European Panorama Documentary 2013

Sebastian Mez

Germany 2013
DCP / black and white
84 minutes

Sebastian Mez
Katharina Fiedler


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