Tide – guest blog by Director Tunde Bodnar

#DIRECTEDBYWOMEN2017 This week we are welcoming Hungarian actress/ director, Tunde Bodnar at the Genesis who will be showcasing her debut art-house short film about a man and a woman who share a night of passion, but as the sun starts to come up they struggle to bring their true feelings to the open.

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*** From the Director: “I was just an actress training in Australia, I had never considered or aspired to take on directing or any other role in the film business… until one day, someone encountered a story over a cup of coffee of a photo depicting a woman in a black dress standing in the ocean. I immediately identified myself with this woman, except that I was also looking at ‘her’ from the outside and started being captured by her as if a man would be gazing at her. That was the seed, and as if I had no choice in the matter, it wanted to grow: I had an image, I had a perspective, now I just had to establish the relationship and what had brought them there. Many people immediately assume that I wrote this story about ‘sex on the beach by night’ based on a personal experience. The truth is I wrote this story out of a completely different motive, though admittedly used elements from my personal life to paint the context. I actually wrote the story about someone else: a guy I knew who was full of passion and desire but pushed anyone away who’d he started getting close with. I saw it all around, in my generation, how easy (and accepted) it is to jump into one-night stands, but how difficult it seems to share…on a different level – to reveal our true feelings for one another to one another. As the film developed, I made interesting discoveries about myself as well; things that were already in the film, hidden deep, but me only realizing them much later.

What has been much more rewarding, however, is how much other people – and to my surprise men especially – related to the film, or the experience when we spoke about it. I had feared that the film would be perceived as ‘girlie’ (i.e. sentimental), even though my whole point was that ALL OF US, men and women equally, long for connection; we all want to belong, to share, to open up… And all of a sudden, here they were: men grabbing the word from me and taking over the talking ‘about the premise’ in a lengthy, inspired way – to my greatest satisfaction.

Making the film has also been an incredible journey. I don’t know how I got so lucky working with so many incredibly talented people all in one. Amanda Jermyn, my co-director, has brought a great amount of professionalism into directing some very sensitive scenes. She understood my concept straight away and gave instructions that produced phenomenal results in the most unexpected ways. While our director of cinematography, Kent Marcus, has brought my vision to life with images that captured delicacy in scenes that otherwise could have turned out obscene. They both very well understood that. My partner in the film, James Joshua Robison, beside having an outstanding screen presence, was also very easy to work with – not something I take for granted.

We produced great chemistry despite of being recently acquainted… as we both understood the importance of setting boundaries within which we could be completely free. And the list of collaborators doesn’t stop here. The evolution of the film had just started. Scott Murden meditation-based coach, ex-filmmaker, upon previewing the film, came back with a poem he has written about a similar experience which I ended up integrating into the film, to give it that real male perspective, while Carmen Montgomery, New York based singer-songwriter, also after a preview screening, came on board with a song ‘Catch Up’ as the film’s title song. I cannot possibly leave off the list Gergely Szabados Moneo who gave me such an unbelievable post-production support – bearing in mind that the editing could have been ‘all focused on sex’ if one does not understand the underlying purpose of the story. Grading was also a challenge as we shot during sunrise and every single take was a different colour.

As for sound design, we also tried to construct something quite interesting and special, using Scott’s poem in chopped-up pieces and creating a soundscape that is lyrical, yet, surprisingly real. What I hope to achieve, the very least, is that for 8 minutes I can intrigue and trigger the senses of the audience through some beautiful images, but hopefully also serve as a catalyst for conversations about vulnerability and our collective desire for connectedness – trying to do my share of making the world that eeny bit of a braver place.”

– Tunde Bodnar

Tide screens Wednesday 8th March from 7pm (Tickets Free) – along with a meet and greet with filmmakers and a live set from Carmen Montgomery – a New York based singer who will be performing the film’s title song, ‘Catch Up – BOOK HERE.

For your chance to also receive a YUME chocolate truffle at the screening, post your selfies/photos with a shout out on www.facebook.com/artist.tundebodnar!

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