Zero
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    Zero

    Seishin 0

    Directed by

    Japan, USA

    2019

    128 min

    • Japanese

    Documentary

    MoMA Doc Fortnight-2020

    Dr. Yamamoto is a psychiatrist, 82 years old and about to give up his practice. In the sixties, he fought for closed psychiatric institutions to open their doors; the film SEISHIN, also by Kazuhiro Soda (Berlinale Forum 2008), centred on his achievements in life. This serves as the jumping off point for SEISHIN 0: Dr. Yamamoto receives his patients for the last time, the camera watches patiently, recording the smallest movements and gestures, the worries, the silences, the sadness and the solace. After the practice has closed, the film shifts its focus to the relationship between Mr. Yamamoto and his wife, who is suffering from dementia. His loving patience remains the most striking element; it makes the film into a document of a humanism that frees itself of any trace of sentimentality as it observes shortcomings, weakness and mental decline with ever greater precision, grasping them in tandem as simply part of human existence.

    Awards

    • Ecumenical Jury Award - Berlinale Forum
    • Montgolfiere D'Or Ex Æquo Award (International Competition) - Festival des 3 Continents

    Festivals

    Credits

    Cast
    Masatomo Yamamoto
    Yoshiko Yamamoto
    Screenplay
    Kazuhiro Soda
    Cinematography
    Kazuhiro Soda
    Editing
    Kazuhiro Soda
    Production
    LABORATORY X
    Sales
    CHINESE SHADOWS
    Kazuhiro Soda

    Kazuhiro Soda

    Japan

    I have ten commandments, many people misinterpret it thinking that I am not a free filmmaker. I self-impose my rules and I'm kind of restricted, but actually, these restrictions are there to set me free.

    Kazuhiro SODA practices an observational method of documentary filmmaking based on his own 'Ten Commandments' which prohibits him from doing pre-shoot research or writing a synopsis before filming. He imposes these rules on himself in order to minimize preconceptions and to be able to make unexpected discoveries while filming and editing. His debut feature documentary CAMPAIGN (2007, Observational Film #1) was invited to many prestigious festivals such as Berlin IFF and was aired in nearly 200 countries and territories around the world. It won the Peabody Award in the U.S.

    Selected Filmography