Tuesday, July 16, 2019

2019 Drama Films: Breathing above the Treeline

Breathing above the Treeline by Gitanjali Kapila
Chicago, IL
 (Milwaukee Premiere)
Running Time: 15 minutes
Screening Time: Sat, Sept 7th 9pm

A recent convert to Buddhism tries to convince a new acquaintance going through a brutal divorce that god exists.





Director's Bio:

Gitanjali is a filmmaker, academic and a member of the faculty at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago and Columbia College Chicago. She earned an MFA from the graduate film program at Columbia University in New York City and a BA from Wesleyan University. She spent three years in Denmark where she was awarded a production grant from the Danish Film Institute. She wrote, directed and produced an experimental award-winning short called Weaning (Løsrivelse). She recently completed a dramatic short Breathing above the Treeline which is currently enjoying a robust reception on the festival circuit with 19 Official Selections, 2 wins for Best Short and 4 live screenings since May 1, 2019. She is in post-production on a new dramatic short Bat which shot early March 2019. She has taught introductory and advanced production and screenwriting courses at Columbia College Chicago since 2004. She joined the Film, Video New Media and Animation faculty at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago in 2015 where she teaches screenwriting. She recently presented her first paper on Steven Soderbergh’s interactive internet-based app Mosaic at the CILECT Congress in Mumbai in November 2018. In May 2019 her first article was published which was jointly edited by Columbia College Chicago and The University of Palermo, Buenos Aires. It offers a reconceptualization of the hero’s journey for the female protagonist. She will present her research at the 13th Interamerican Conference on Design in Buenos Aires at the end of July 2019. She has also been invited to present new research on writing narrative for interactive internet-based media at CILECT 2019 taking in Moscow in October 2019. She is currently writing a comedy Christmas feature called Sandra Claus which she will pitch as one of 10 finalists in front of investor representation at the Princeton Independent Film Festival for the 2019 Raine Filmmaker Award in September 2019.

Director's Statement:

Breathing above the Treeline converges at the nexus of rage, class and gender. That's right, rage. The rage of negation. The rage of rejection. Of being invisible and being misapprehended. The rage of women. It is a very personal film and is my clarion call to women to fight for their human rights, whether these be personal or political. I am thinking now about the near abortion ban just passed in Alabama. One possible tagline for the poster was 'that's a man's doing, every fucking time,' the last line in the film spoken by the protagonist. I believe it's important to engage in hyperbole from time to time because it can result in clarity when one is feeling disoriented. In the end, I decided to go with another tagline for the film, 'Just breathe' because our fight requires this, too.

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