[:es]MUBI Podcast: Encuentros | T2[:en]MUBI Podcast: Encounters | T2[:]

MUBI Podcast: Encuentros | T2Podcast

Episodio especial. Ser como el agua

Episodio especial. Ser como el agua
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MUBI Podcast: Encuentros | T2

Episodio especial. Ser como el agua

En esta conversación dos de los nombres más importantes del cine contemporáneo hablan de sus procesos creativos a propósito de su colaboración en la película Memoria, un proyecto íntimo fundado en una larga amistad.

Apichatpong Weerasethakul es un artista y director tailandés reconocido a nivel mundial. Los sueños y la muerte son temas esenciales en su filmografía. A través de sus rasgos estilísticos plantea grandes interrogantes sobre el tiempo y nuestra relación con el mundo espiritual.

Ganador de la Palma de Oro de Cannes en 2012 por Uncle Boonmee Who Can Recall His Past Lives, Weerasethakul regresó una década después a la competencia oficial de este mismo certamen con Memoria, su primera película rodada fuera de Tailandia, la cual recibió el Premio del Jurado (ex-aequo).

Tilda Swinton es una artista, actriz y productora escocesa. Comenzó su carrera actuando y colaborando con el cineasta experimental Derek Jarman. Ha trabajado con directores como Jim Jarmusch, Wes Anderson, Luca Guadagnino, los hermanos Coen y Joanna Hogg. Sus actuaciones se han caracterizado por la sutileza de sus gestos y su magnética presencia. En 2007 ganó el Oscar a Mejor Actriz de Reparto por la película Michael Clayton.

Ha combinado el trabajo en los principales estudios de Hollywood con una amplia gama de personajes creados por cineastas contemporáneos como Bong Joon-ho, Pedro Almodóvar, Lynne Ramsay y, más recientemente, Apichatpong Weerasethakul.

Swinton y Weerasethakul se reunieron en Bogotá para acompañar el estreno de su película en Colombia y hablaron sobre la importancia de entender que no siempre tenemos el control y cómo el cine es un intento de poner en pantalla lo que hay dentro de nosotros mismos, algo que lograron a través del sonido.

 

Invitados

 

Créditos

Con la participación de Apichatpong Weerasethakul y Tilda Swinton

  • Idea: Efe Cakarel, Sandra Gómez, Jon Barrenechea y Ricardo Giraldo
  • Producción y supervisión: Ricardo Giraldo
  • Productores ejecutivos: Efe Cakarel, Sandra Gómez, Jon Barrenechea, Diego Luna, Gael García Bernal y Paula Amor
  • Sonido: Javier Umpiérrez
  • Música original: Andrés Solís
  • Voz: Elvira Liceaga
  • Investigación, guion y transcripciones: Andrés Suárez
  • Coordinador de producción, guion y transcripciones: Fernando Peña
  • Grabación en Bogotá: Camilo Martínez

 

Agradecimientos especiales a Diana Bustamante, Mateo Suárez, Yeily Antonio, TocTalk Comunicaciones y Marty Stewart Minnich

Esta conversación fue grabada en Hotel Casa Legado (Bogotá, Colombia)

La Corriente del Golfo Podcast y MUBI todos los derechos reservados © 2022

 

Transcripción

CRÉDITOS INICIALES E INTRO

  • (Voz Elvis): 

 

En esta ocasión presentamos un episodio especial en inglés con motivo del estreno de MEMORIA. En esta conversación Apichatpong Weerasethakul y Tilda Swinton, reunidos en Colombia, hablan de sus procesos creativos, de sus experiencias y del trabajo conjunto en Memoria. 

 

Si eres angloparlante continúa escuchando.

 

Y recuerda que la temporada 3º de Encuentros llegará muy pronto a este feed.

 

  • Suena Bang de MEMORIA

 

  • Arranque sonido de prendido de “proyector” o sonido que considere Javier

 

  • Créditos producción (Voz Elvis): 

MUBI y La Corriente del Golfo Podcast presentan

 

  • “Beep” como de arranque de roll

 

  • Música (se queda hasta la presentación y arranque conversación)

 

  • Nombre del podcast y ID sonoro – Presentación del podcast.

 

  • (Voz Elvis): 

ENCUENTROS, un podcast de MUBI. La plataforma de cine seleccionado a mano.

 

Cada día, una nueva película. En cada episodio, una nueva conversación. 

 

  • Extracto conversación 1

 

TILDA SWINTON:

 

 

For me to be working with you and to work in the way that we’re working now regularly, I mean, not just working on Memoria, for me it’s not only the revelation of something  new but it’s also a return to the, my roots in filmmaking.

 

 

  • Statement (Voz Elvis): 

 

In this special episode of MUBI Podcast: Encuentros, two of international cinema’s most remarkable voices come together to share and discuss the films we love.

 

  • Extracto conversación 2

 

APICHATPONG WEERASETHAKUL: 

 

 

There’s a monk that I listen to and, you know, he mentions about that we shouldn’t tie ourselves to anything and that’s so beautiful, you know, that when someone asks me “who are you?”, you know, if I can, I don’t want to say that I’m a filmmaker or I’m an artist, you know? Because you tie to that identity, no?

 

 

  • Presentación de invitadxs

 

This conversation touches on the creative process of two of film’s greatest names while working together on the film Memoria, an intimate collaboration founded on their long friendship.

 

Apichatpong Weerasethakul is a world-renowned Thai artist and film director. The topics of dreams and death are essential to his filmography. His style raises big questions about time and our relationship with the spiritual world. Winner of the Cannes Palme d’Or in 2012 for Uncle Boonmee Who Can Recall His Past Lives, Weerasethakul returned to the main competition years later with Memoria, his first film shot outside of Thailand, which received the Jury Prize (ex-aequo).

 

Tilda Swinton is a Scottish artist, actress and producer. She began her career performing and collaborating with experimental filmmaker Derek Jarman. She has worked with directors such as Jim Jarmusch, Wes Anderson, Luca Guadagnino, the Coen brothers and Joanna Hogg. Her performances have been characterized by the subtlety of her gestures and her magnetic presence. In 2007 she won the Academy Award for Best Performance by an Actress in a Supporting Role for the movie Michael Clayton. 

 

She has combined her acting in major Hollywood productions with a wide range of characters created by contemporary filmmakers such as Bong Joon-ho, Pedro Almodóvar, Lynne Ramsay and more recently Apichatpong Weerasethakul. 

 

Swinton and Weerasethakul reunited in Colombia for Memoria’s release and talked about the importance of understanding that you’re not in control and how cinema is an attempt to put what’s inside one’s head on screen, something they achieved through sound. 

 

  • Continúa música

 

  • INICIO

 

APICHATPONG WEERASETHAKUL: 

 

 

How’s your sleep?

 

 

TILDA SWINTON: 

 

 

Here?

 

 

APICHATPONG WEERASETHAKUL: 

 

 

Yeah. 

 

 

TILDA SWINTON: 

 

 

I hardly slept last night. I mean, I’ve only had one night here. I hardly slept, I woke up every two hours. 

 

 

APICHATPONG WEERASETHAKUL: 

 

 

Oh. And is it jet lag you feel? Or… 

 

 

TILDA SWINTON: 

 

 

Actually I think it was more… didn’t feel like jet lag, it felt like excitement. I just kept thinking “ah, is it time to get up? No, no, go back to sleep. Ah, is it time to get up?”

 

 

APICHATPONG WEERASETHAKUL: 

 

 

Huh…

 

 

TILDA SWINTON:

 

 

And very… having just arrived back I really want to get into Colombia, I really want to re-enter…

 

 

APICHATPONG WEERASETHAKUL: 

 

 

Right, right, right. Me too. I want to walk around and to see what I remember. 

 

 

TILDA SWINTON: 

 

 

Yeah and just see all our friends and be back in. This is why I am a little bit, I don’t want to sound ungrateful, but I’m a little frustrated that I’m only here for a week because I wanna be starting another journey here, I wanna be here for months. 

 

 

  • INSERT MÚSICA –

 

  • Nombre de episodio

 

 

Special episode. Being like water

 

 

  • Comienza la conversación

 

  • INSERT MÚSICA 

 

 

TILDA SWINTON: 

 

 

So these are the first Colombian audiences to have seen the film…

 

 

APICHATPONG WEERASETHAKUL: 

 

 

Right, right.  

 

 

TILDA SWINTON: 

 

 

So what… could you gather from them some sense of, of the nature of Colombia in the film? I mean, what was their experience?

 

 

APICHATPONG WEERASETHAKUL: 

 

 

They were impressed by how the film captured Bogotá, you know, this heaviness and the architecture and the rains and this… that somehow that they sense its authenticity, you know, and somebody told me “nobody had been captured this, this mood or spirit of the town”.

 

 

TILDA SWINTON: 

 

 

Because this of course is one of the first questions that people ask us about this film I think a good one because it informs the spirit of the film itself that you know… “why did we make it in Colombia?” And the story goes with once upon a time… that you and I had the idea of this film or rather the germ, the kind of very very nascent embryonic spirit which I believe it’s still there in the film that we finally made even though we sort of conjured it over ten years ago, this idea of a journey and of a response between a person and, and the environment, ahm, and also something about the crossroads between time and something very sort of existential. That came first and then Colombia came after.

 

 

APICHATPONG WEERASETHAKUL: 

 

 

Right. 

 

 

TILDA SWINTON: 

 

 

And people are intrigued by that and as the story goes, just to be quite schematic about it, we had been talking for a while about this idea but not known where we were gonna be and we knew quite quickly, I think, that we didn’t want to be in Thailand and (…)

 

 

APICHATPONG WEERASETHAKUL: 

 

 

No.

 

 

TILDA SWINTON: 

 

 

(…) and, and one of the reasons for that, tell me if I’m remembering it correctly, was because I was very cautious about having established my real proper desire, you know, to be in your frame as a presence and as a performer, uhm, I was very cautious about being in your frame in Thailand because could not figure out a way and then you agreed to that (…) 

 

 

APICHATPONG WEERASETHAKUL: 

 

 

Yes.

 

 

TILDA SWINTON: 

 

 

(…) we couldn’t quite understand how I could be in a Thai frame. 

 

 

APICHATPONG WEERASETHAKUL: 

 

 

In fact I tried to write, you know, with you in the fra… in the pages way before Memoria planning, it’s like two thousand, early 2000 even… no, actually, no, only 2010, 2013 when I’m developing Cemetery of Splendour that takes place in my hometown, yeah? And I knew it’s not working… 

 

 

TILDA SWINTON: 

 

 

Yeah. 

 

 

APICHATPONG WEERASETHAKUL: 

 

 

You know? Even from the pages. Yeah, so….

 

 

TILDA SWINTON: 

 

 

And, and we then, I remember there was a moment when we even talked about… because one of the things that, that resonates for me, I think, to be again very practical about it, ah, about… made it… me feel about it may be possible for me to be in your frame any way or wherever it was going to be was that this, uhm, this attention to the kind of trauma bell ringing in a place is something that means something to me. As a Scottish person it’s something that I feel in Scotland, it’s not just something that I pick up, uhm, in places that I’m not from, it’s also something that feels very, very familiar and very natural to me as a Scottish person and so there was a minute when we wondered whether we might be in Scotland but then quickly we realized what we really wanted was to find a place where neither of us, uhm, was from and a place that we both knew equally and, and then came the search of, you know, looking at lists and lists and thinking of where it could possibly be and then you came to the film festival in Cartagena (…)

 

 

APICHATPONG WEERASETHAKUL: 

 

 

Right. 

 

 

TILDA SWINTON:

 

 

(…) and that was it, I remember you, you said “It’s Colombia! S.O.S.”

 

 

APICHATPONG WEERASETHAKUL: 

 

 

Yes, especially coming here in Bogotá to, to be confronted, you know, with this huge mountain and heavy clouds and that certain kind of threatening feelings and, hmm, something that I don’t know, you know, there’s something mysterious (…) 

 

 

TILDA SWINTON:

 

 

Yeah.

 

 

APICHATPONG WEERASETHAKUL: 

 

 

(…) about it that I think it synchronized with what I was through at that time with this sound in my head and I think that’s why I wrote to you and I think we embraced this idea of not knowing…

 

 

TILDA SWINTON:

 

 

Yeah.

 

 

APICHATPONG WEERASETHAKUL: 

 

 

Yeah? Hmm, and it was beautiful.

 

 

TILDA SWINTON:

 

 

In fact… I mean, that’s very much at the heart of it, the sense of, of not knowing and that, that the person, let’s say the avatar -I hesitate to use the word character because it’s really inappropriate because we’re not working with that kind of theatrical construct-, but the person, the spirit of Jessica who was gonna be moving through the film, who was gonna be the, the guide for the audience in this environment of Colombia, uhm, is dealing with a mystery in her own, in her own daily life and, and that felt so right…You had, of course, this experience of your, of the bang! Talk about that first and then we’ll talk about, about my experiences. So, so, so talk about that, because that started after we started to consider the germ of the film, then you started to have the combination of the bang! and the insomnia. Were they related? I mean, which came first? Can you remember? 

 

 

APICHATPONG WEERASETHAKUL: 

 

 

I think that the, I think it must be insomnia. 

 

 

TILDA SWINTON:

 

 

Yeah.

 

 

APICHATPONG WEERASETHAKUL: 

 

 

And insomnia maybe because of the work and depression and the bang! came… I don’t know for to rescue or something because I feel fascinated by it. 

 

 

TILDA SWINTON:

 

 

Yeah.

 

 

APICHATPONG WEERASETHAKUL: 

 

 

It happened early in the morning and just bang! and… but not like in the film, you know, it’s not jumpy, it was, it was the idea of the sound, no? When, when it’s like when you have a conversation with yourself, it’s not a sound, it’s like a sound but the idea in the head, yeah, and it progressed through the years… I think I had it for two-three years and then I, I could control it, you know? This big or small or when it’s gonna come and… 

 

 

TILDA SWINTON:

 

 

So you could invite it?

 

 

APICHATPONG WEERASETHAKUL: 

 

 

Yes, yes but it had to start first (…)

 

 

TILDA SWINTON:

 

 

Oh, ok.

 

 

APICHATPONG WEERASETHAKUL: 

 

 

(…) and then “oh, ok, the machine is running”.

 

 

TILDA SWINTON:

 

 

So like a sneeze. 

 

 

APICHATPONG WEERASETHAKUL: 

 

 

Yes, in a way, in a way. And then, curiously there were appearing geometric forms, you know, squares and a lot of circular things, like white flash in the dark with the bang! and it’s like animation with circular getting smaller or bigger and I was in the first early, early draft of the film too, you know? That actually Hernán, at the river was full of forms, geometric forms all over him, yeah, yeah, so it happening during my trip in Colombia to after Cartagena and Bogotá, Medellín, so it accompanied me there, so, I mean…

 

 

TILDA SWINTON:

 

 

I think, you know, when I see the film there’s a line in the film which the more I see it, the more I find it resonates when, for somebody to say about anything, whether it’s a thought or whether it’s a belief or whether it’s an experience, it sounds different in my own head, it’s like… that, that in itself it’s such a, an enormous bag of wander that we as beings can try and describe things to each other, we can try and communicate but we have to accept that we may never be able… 

 

 

APICHATPONG WEERASETHAKUL: 

 

 

Right… 

 

 

TILDA SWINTON:

 

 

We certainly cannot really communicate and I love… I mean, that’s one of the things I most love about cinema, it’s that it’s this attempt to put out on the screen what is inside our heads and I find myself very moved by the acknowledgment that that’s impossible, it’s actually impossible to take outside what, what’s meant to be inside.

 

 

APICHATPONG WEERASETHAKUL: 

 

 

And if you look at the film there’re not many bangs, actually. 

 

 

TILDA SWINTON:

 

 

No.

 

 

APICHATPONG WEERASETHAKUL: 

 

 

But it feels more of the idea of it, no?

 

 

TILDA SWINTON:

 

 

Because once you had one and the first one comes within the first seconds of the film (…) 

 

 

APICHATPONG WEERASETHAKUL: 

 

 

Yeah… 

 

 

TILDA SWINTON:

 

 

(…) actually, the audience is complicit cause the audience is now literally as close as they can be inside Jessica’s head (…)

 

 

APICHATPONG WEERASETHAKUL: 

 

 

Right.

 

 

TILDA SWINTON:

 

 

(…) so they’re waiting. So we are, all of us, Jessica are in the audience. I mean, particularly in the scene in the restaurant where there are two bangs, there’s this feeling of and also what I love is that there are other people, there’s Jessica’s sister and, and brother in law and nephew who are present but they can’t hear it so we, the audience and Jessica we have this, we’re sharing this experience (…)

 

 

APICHATPONG WEERASETHAKUL: 

 

 

Yes, hmm…

 

 

TILDA SWINTON:

 

 

(…) it’s, it’s very tender. The audience is waiting as well and just as shocked as she is. 

 

 

APICHATPONG WEERASETHAKUL: 

 

 

Right. And the thing is also, as the movie progresses, I feared that is opened enough as well that, like you said, the sound it’s only you who can hear it, only you know, but I think also the story or what the others, I mean, that timeline or something, I think the audience, individual audience feel in his or her own interpretation or connection with Jessica. Yeah, with their own experience. So, some people said to me afterwards like it doesn’t feel like watching a film, it just experience something…

 

 

TILDA SWINTON:

 

 

Yeah, yeah. 

 

 

APICHATPONG WEERASETHAKUL: 

 

 

Not much of a story. 

 

 

[Agregar fragmento sonoro de la película]

Se oye el agua correr.

-¿Está bien?

 

 

TILDA SWINTON:

 

 

So, let me ask you, when you said that in early drafts you were, you were thinking of replicating this visual aspect to the sound, this sort of fragmentation of the image and, and this sort of geometric, these geometric shapes and things, at what point and can you remember why you decided to not do that, but to stick with the sound?

 

 

APICHATPONG WEERASETHAKUL: 

 

 

Because I, I journey with the character, through sound, actually, I imagined the sound as I wrote. But then at that moment, when this square circular thing pops up, I feel distracted. And, and I feel that this may be how you say, it’s too much that I just feel that I mean, how to create the same feeling through sound, rather than you visualize it, and how to –how do you say?–how to not—I would say concretize.

 

 

TILDA SWINTON:

 

 

So maybe, yeah, I’m just trying to imagine what that would have done to me, the viewer, I think I might have minded that some mystery might have gone because, because with sound, there’s always this question of accuracy, interpretation, you know, the, the, the scene in the, in the sound, in the recording studio is so– it’s such like a complete portrait of an artist trying to get her work out of her head and interpret it. It’s, it’s very practical that scene and the fact that it’s so difficult for her to explain and the difficult for him to interpret, but he has these ways of doing it, and I think is, is really beautiful. But because we’re dealing in the realm of sound, and because as she says, “it sounds different in my own head”, uhm, there’s a sort of assumption that it’s always going to be mysterious, or that the question of accuracy is always going to be partial or compromised, or one’s going to have to have a sense of humility around that. Whereas with visual representation, one sort of gives up that sense of mystery because it’s, it’s there…

 

 

APICHATPONG WEERASETHAKUL: 

 

 

It’s concrete

 

 

TILDA SWINTON:

 

 

It’s concrete. Yeah. But also back to our decision to come here, uhm, I remember when we were shooting looking in the monitor which of course is a, it’s a, I’m so ancient that I remember making films without monitors, uhm, and I started when the monitor first appeared I had again, a sort of slightly confused relationship with the monitor cause I think (…) 

 

 

APICHATPONG WEERASETHAKUL: 

 

 

Really?

 

 

TILDA SWINTON:

 

 

(…) there’s some things the monitor can give you and there’s a lot of things you, the monitor can’t give you but it can give you the frame and the frame of course is everything, really. And I remember all of us looking at the monitor in the first few days of shooting with you (…) 

 

 

APICHATPONG WEERASETHAKUL: 

 

 

Right.

 

 

TILDA SWINTON:

 

 

(…) and going “haha, looks like an Apichatpong film but we’re in Bogotá, how is it possible?”

 

 

APICHATPONG WEERASETHAKUL: 

 

 

Yes?

 

 

TILDA SWINTON:

 

 

You know…

 

 

APICHATPONG WEERASETHAKUL: 

 

 

I don’t remember this. 

 

 

TILDA SWINTON:

 

 

Yeah, and it felt, it almost looked and, and at that stage, of course, because at that stage you had only worked in Thailand, your frames were pretty much all from Thailand. 

 

 

APICHATPONG WEERASETHAKUL: 

 

 

I’m sorry, I just feel like. 

 

 

TILDA SWINTON:

 

 

No, it was wonderful, it felt like, it felt like the jungle in Pijao, it, it, it’s a new country you made… you know, there is a country that… a state, it’s like I always say, cinema is a state of its own, we go to the state of cinema. 

 

 

APICHATPONG WEERASETHAKUL: 

 

 

Yeah, right. 

 

 

TILDA SWINTON:

 

 

And, and, and it’s the state of Apichatpong cinema is… doesn’t matter where you are, you are in Colombia, you could… 

 

 

APICHATPONG WEERASETHAKUL: 

 

 

Noooo, I tried to, I tried to escape from myself. You know, because I was in FICCI, right?

 

 

TILDA SWINTON:

 

 

Yeah. 

 

 

APICHATPONG WEERASETHAKUL: 

 

 

And they’re showing clips before the ceremony, you know, they give this award and maybe in your year too, you know, they have this beautiful bantages of past films and I felt like “uh, it’s like a funeral”. 

 

 

TILDA SWINTON:

 

 

Oh no, it’s awful though. 

 

 

APICHATPONG WEERASETHAKUL: 

 

 

It was…

 

 

TILDA SWINTON:

 

 

It’s really awful, one has to be careful with oneself at moments like that. 

 

 

APICHATPONG WEERASETHAKUL: 

 

 

But it’s so emotional, no?

 

 

TILDA SWINTON:

 

 

Yeah, it is. The only good thing is like after, after looking at those obituaries you, I mean, one hopes that one wants to make more work.  

 

 

APICHATPONG WEERASETHAKUL: 

 

 

Exa… that’s how I feel. 

 

 

TILDA SWINTON:

 

 

You go like “oooh, I have just started, I have to keep going”. 

 

 

APICHATPONG WEERASETHAKUL: 

 

 

But that’s how I felt, then I thought “ok, Colombia (…)

 

 

TILDA SWINTON:

 

 

Yeah. 

 

 

APICHATPONG WEERASETHAKUL: 

 

 

(…) and I’m, is going to be a new chapter in my career” but then my editor, you now, look at the footage say “you could have shot this in your backyard” and, and… 

 

 

TILDA SWINTON:

 

 

Nooooooo. No, I think there’s two ways of reading this, that… I think that’s the very self and slightly self-defeating and masochistic way of reading it… 

 

 

APICHATPONG WEERASETHAKUL: 

 

 

No, no, no.

 

 

TILDA SWINTON:

 

 

I think that what I’m trying to say is that your frame is a place of its own and I believe you could bring your frame to Scotland or to Iceland or to uh Perú or to Tokyo and, and, and it would as we now discovered, tell us something about that place but it’s still your frame and that’s a good thing, that’s a very generous thing, to take your frame to other places because it’s such merges…

 

 

APICHATPONG WEERASETHAKUL: 

 

 

I question that, I just, sorry, I just feel like I wanna live like two hundred years and something I want to, I want to break out of this frame and (…)

 

 

TILDA SWINTON:

 

 

Ok.

 

 

APICHATPONG WEERASETHAKUL: 

 

 

(…) let’s do it.

 

 

TILDA SWINTON:

 

 

Ok, let’s do it.

 

 

APICHATPONG WEERASETHAKUL: 

 

 

Next time. 

 

 

TILDA SWINTON:

 

 

We will. Well, if we want to live for two hundred years then we will. Let ‘s do it. 

 

 

APICHATPONG WEERASETHAKUL: 

 

 

Because I… you know, the reason coming here is also to find, to stimulate myself but of course I discover many beautiful things and, uhm… but then maybe I need to accept that, right? 

 

 

TILDA SWINTON:

 

 

Well, then let’s talk about newness then. Ok, let’s say, what is it that it’s new in Memoria that you value? In terms of experience of making it and in terms of, if you can objectively, describe the film itself. What the thing is itself? Uhm, what’s new? 

 

   

APICHATPONG WEERASETHAKUL: 

 

 

Well, in fact, most things are new… 

 

 

TILDA SWINTON:

 

 

Ok, yeah. 

 

 

APICHATPONG WEERASETHAKUL: 

 

 

But maybe the sense of the timing and the relationship of how we, you know, as in time in the film and… hmm, it’s hard to say, and the sound…

 

 

TILDA SWINTON:

 

 

You mean the rhythm?

 

 

APICHATPONG WEERASETHAKUL: 

 

 

The rhythm. And the idea of human existence, but what’s new is you, Colombia… I don’t know how to explain it, it’s so profound, melancholy at certain feelings and also acceptance in the end, yeah… 

 

 

TILDA SWINTON:

 

 

Well, I suppose one thing that’s, that’s a big leap for you is simply this thing of not being in the country that you were born in and grew up in.

 

 

APICHATPONG WEERASETHAKUL: 

 

 

My cushion, yeah.

 

 

TILDA SWINTON:

 

 

Your cushion. And not only your cushion but your soci… your social network, your social web, the web of language, the web of Thai people speaking Thai to each other and being able to express themselves. I mean, we don’t have any of that in Memoria because we’re dealing with someone who cannot express themselves very well in Spanish so it’s all very minimal this sort of… It reminds me of what Hitchcock said about, you know, you let the camera tell the story and the dialogue will be atmosphere… 

 

 

APICHATPONG WEERASETHAKUL: 

 

 

Ahhh. 

 

 

TILDA SWINTON:

 

 

It’s Hitchcockian in that sense because the spoken language, which is really not that important in Memoria, it’s much less important than the experience and, and, and she, as a mutter, as the portrait who is muttering it is, is not very creative, she is not actually… she is receiving, she’s more receptive than creative and in your… 

 

 

APICHATPONG WEERASETHAKUL: 

 

 

She is… yeah, she is like water, she is just blending, she changes… 

 

 

TILDA SWINTON:

 

 

Yeah. And that is very very interesting to me and I know that that’s very interesting to you as well as a, you know, as people, that state of water and that attempt to live in the present but to try and explore that in film, that’s, that’s very new and very ambitious and, and really exciting and I feel we’ve started with Memoria and I think we wanna go on to try and to examine and, and, and trace (…) 

 

 

APICHATPONG WEERASETHAKUL: 

 

 

Right. 

 

 

TILDA SWINTON:

 

 

(…) that, that feeling, that environment… It, it’s more like an environmental project rather than a narrative project or… 

 

 

APICHATPONG WEERASETHAKUL: 

 

 

It’s a mindscape. 

 

 

TILDA SWINTON:

 

 

It’s a mindscape, exactly. So that’s super new and when you think of, you know, your films that you’ve made in Thailand, they are, speaking as a non Thai person, I feel when I’m watching them that there’s a whole web of Thai, it’s not just the language, but seeing the way in which the people communicate… 

 

 

APICHATPONG WEERASETHAKUL: 

 

 

You’re right, you’re right, yeah. That’s element, that’s something that really ties to that location and culture. 

 

 

TILDA SWINTON:

 

 

And history. As a non-Thai person I’m learning and… 

 

 

APICHATPONG WEERASETHAKUL: 

 

 

At last. 

 

 

TILDA SWINTON:

 

 

Or not understanding and it’s this feeling of a bed rock like this, what we’re getting in your stories is, is, you know, the tip of the iceberg but under the water is this massive, you know, the reality of Thai social history which, which of course you and your Thai colleagues know more about than, than, than I do. 

 

 

APICHATPONG WEERASETHAKUL: 

 

 

I think the core that I took it over is, I don’t know we can call Buddhism but this philosophy of water, I think, it’s present in Thai film but maybe not as much as here because here is really singular. 

 

 

TILDA SWINTON:

 

 

Yeah. 

 

 

APICHATPONG WEERASETHAKUL: 

 

 

Singular activity of just walking and discovering and  that pronounce this element and I don’t know if you remember I gave you this little book (…)

 

 

TILDA SWINTON:

 

 

Yes, which I carry with me always. 

 

 

APICHATPONG WEERASETHAKUL: 

 

 

(…) yeah, I think he talks about that, by Thich Nhat Hanh, talk about being aware that you’re water and you’re also connected with everything. You’re the sky, you’re the trees, you’re part of everything and I think that has something to do with Memoria as well. 

 

 

  • Sonido de que se acaba el primer rollo/carrete como en proyecciones análogas o sonido/s que considere Javier

 

  • Arranca música de ENCUENTROS (está presente durante todo el intermedio)

 

  • INTERMEDIO 

 

  • Voz MUBI (ELVIS):

 

INTERMISSION

 

  • Espacio de promo MUBI

 

  • Voz MUBI (ELVIS):

 

MUBI is a curated streaming service showing exceptional films from around the globe. All of them hand-picked by real people…who really know movies.

Every day, MUBI premieres a new film. From iconic directors to emerging auteurs, there is always something new to discover.

And if you are enjoying this conversation, we are happy to share that MEMORIA will stream exclusively on MUBI starting this Friday, August 5 in many countries, including in most of Latin America, Germany, Italy, India, and Turkey. More details are in the show notes

 

  • PEQUEÑA PAUSA

You can also stream many of the films we’ve featured on the podcast: just look for the collection called “MUBI Podcast: Encuentros” on the “Now Showing” page.

And to try MUBI free for 30 days, visit MUBI dot com, slash Encuentros, that’s M-U-B-I dot com slash Encuentros for a whole month of great cinema.

 

  • Charla sobre películas favoritas

 

  • Voz (ELVIS):

In this block Apichatpong Weerasethakul and Tilda Swinton talk about some of their favorite films

 

 

TILDA SWINTON:

 

 

A film that I hope very much that MUBI is going to take an interest in (ríe) is Andrea Arnold’s new film COW, which is, it actually relates a lot to things that we’ve discussed this morning. It’s a really beautiful film. I hesitate to call it a documentary. I’d rather like attachment to labels of any kind. I’m not not not keen to, to call a film anything particularly. It’s it’s the portrait of a cow on a dairy farm in England and her life and yeah, it’s it’s it’s really, it’s shot at cow height, so you’re really with her. And all through it actually the very first sequence is one of her calves being born. This calf is being born opens its eyes for the first time into the lens of Andrea’s camera and you can imagine what the end is, so I won’t spoil it but it’s about the life of a cow. And it’s very strong and very poetic and and tough.

 

 

APICHATPONG WEERASETHAKUL:  

 

 

It was in a Cannes, right? 

 

 

TILDA SWINTON:

 

 

It was in Cannes.

 

 

APICHATPONG WEERASETHAKUL: 

 

 

No, for me I I stopped seeing film for a while somehow. So my my, say, my favorite ones, mostly old ones. Let me think there’s too many though… I like THE CONVERSATION by Coppola is 1974… And the fact that I– there’s  sentence in the film that link to a murder of this couple or about to that what Gene Hackman think about that I couldn’t understand as a Thai person, cause there what what is what it talks about, you know, and then Gene Hackman also trying to find, you know, try to rewind and rewind and also to manipulate the machine to, to make the sound clearer. And even when he understood I didn’t, so I kept watching this film over and over. And then I discovered other things in the film, you know, the craft of Coppola. And, yeah, so, an incident is about sound. And it’s about how, you know, the illusion, elusive quality of it. Yeah, so that’s one.

 

 

TILDA SWINTON:

 

 

So another, which is not only one of my favorite films of all time, but also has recently been, that had a new print made by the BFI is Michael Powell and Emeric Pressburger is I KNOW WHERE I’M GOING, which I always described as one of the greatest Scottish films ever made. But of course, it’s made by an Englishman and a Hungarian. And it’s 1942. And it’s set in the, on the northwest coast of Scotland. And it’s about trying to get to an island. And it’s so happens that the island that they’re trying to get to in the film is based on– in fact, there’s a map in the film of the island. And even though in the film, it’s called Killoran, the map shows the island that I’ve known all my life, it’s like a family island that we, my family has always gone to, my grandfather always went to. And it’s a really, really beautiful film about Scottish romanticism and… it’s about being blown off course, because there’s a storm. And the things that this very willful young woman wants are interrupted because of nature. And she is brought into contact with a kind of mystical experience in Scotland which is very dear to me. It’s a really beautiful film, and a war film, made in the war. And there’s a way of reading it also, which is very political, which it’s only on sort of second or third reading that one picks up on the fact that these wealthy English people have taken these places for rent in Scotland to avoid the bombing in London or the bombing in the north of England, and the impoverished aristocratic, Scottish aristocratic sort of fighting fascism. It’s a– incredible film.

 

 

APICHATPONG WEERASETHAKUL: 

 

 

Another one for me is Tsai Ming-liang, GOODBYE DRAGON INN. It’s a portrait of this old cinema in I think in Taipei, uhm, that resonates with me very much because this giant theater, you know that in my youth, there were several of them — six, seven. And when I was I don’t know when it was 30 years old, you know, they’re all gone. Yeah, and we now have Cineplex it’s a smaller screen, different ritual. And so Goodbye Dragon Inn it’s really linked with with those time in my life and and the film, you know, happen to the course of this one martial art film, you know from start to finish, you know real time and he used the real King Hu film. And you see a glimpse of it from time to time from the side, and the whole film is raining. 

 

 

TILDA SWINTON:

 

 

Ah…

 

 

APICHATPONG WEERASETHAKUL:

 

 

You can hear this rain outside, the rain from inside this is almost like his never ending tears. It’s so moving for me. And there’s a few audiences in the theater, mysteries that sometimes appear sometimes disappear, to do the kind of browse –how you call it– in the bathroom, you know, kind of check, checking one each other out. And, you know, and some, some just disappear, sometimes disappear. They’re like ghosts popping in and out. And yeah.

 

 

TILDA SWINTON:

 

 

I was just remembering that actually the first piece of work that you and I collaborated on was our film festival in Yanoi, in what year? I’m very bad at years… 

 

 

APICHATPONG WEERASETHAKUL:  

 

 

Oh, me too! 

 

 

TILDA SWINTON:

 

 

Oh, I don’t know…

 

 

APICHATPONG WEERASETHAKUL:  

 

 

2011 or something?

 

 

TILDA SWINTON:

 

 

Yeah, that doesn’t sound wrong, something around then. And uhm we co-curated a film festival on this island Yanoi of Thailand and one of the days we had an open cinema for the village in a rice party, you remember?

 

 

APICHATPONG WEERASETHAKUL: 

 

 

Yes!

 

 

TILDA SWINTON:

 

 

And then we had a, a, these actors, quite well-known actors came down from Bangkok and they live-dubbed it and it was absolute riot, it was fantastic, it was like a rock concert, wasn’t it? It was a huge performance and then this rice party, and this filled with all of villagers there, it was great

 

 

APICHATPONG WEERASETHAKUL: 

 

 

That’s a mad festival.

 

 

TILDA SWINTON:

 

 

That was a mad festival!

 

 

APICHATPONG WEERASETHAKUL: 

 

 

How did we do it?

 

 

TILDA SWINTON:

 

 

It was great, we even had a, we had, we called it «Film On The Rocks» and the last night we had this, we had film projected against these beautiful rocks, we all went out on boats and we were on a floating platform watching film projected on the rocks. It was insane

 

 

APICHATPONG WEERASETHAKUL: 

 

 

You were showing… 

 

 

TILDA SWINTON:

 

 

I think I showed another of my favorite films which is a film from 1933 by Henry Hathaway, PETER IBBETSON, with Gary Cooper. 

 

 

APICHATPONG WEERASETHAKUL: 

 

 

Right

 

 

TILDA SWINTON:

Which is, was the film fetiche or our film fetiche of the surrealists, it’s about, you know… About meeting in dreams! Actually It was a little seed of Memoria as well because about people who are irrevocably separated and cannot be together in the flesh, meeting in each other’s dreams and sending each other’s messages in the dreams. 

 

 

APICHATPONG WEERASETHAKUL: 

 

 

It’s so sexy.

 

 

TILDA SWINTON:

 

 

Mmm, yeah…

 

 

APICHATPONG WEERASETHAKUL: 

 

 

(Se ríe) And not sexy at the same time, I think that these two characters are friends, no? From the childhood.

 

 

TILDA SWINTON:

 

 

They meet when they’re children–they basically fall in love when they’re 8 and they’re separated and then they find each other again and then they’re separated again forever, but they meet in their dreams. Yeah, it’s sort of a ghost story in a way.

 

 

APICHATPONG WEERASETHAKUL: 

 

 

I like when he walk out of the JO cells, like super special effects for me.

 

 

TILDA SWINTON:

 

 

Yeah, 1933! And there was a lot of dancing at that film festival as well. It’s like from another, talk about memories, wow, that feels a long time ago…

 

 

APICHATPONG WEERASETHAKUL: 

 

 

And I like Jarman’s BLUE actually. I saw it when I was in Chicago and I didn’t understand much, I mean, it was like a dream to me, again a dream, it was a film of memories. And the thing is during the projection the film caught fire. 

 

 

TILDA SWINTON:

 

 

That’s happened–that used to happen a lot with Derek. 

 

 

APICHATPONG WEERASETHAKUL: 

 

 

Really?

 

 

TILDA SWINTON:

 

 

That happened when we showed The Last of England in Venice and everybody thought it was part of the film. 

 

 

APICHATPONG WEERASETHAKUL: 

 

 

I thought that because it’s, at a certain point, it’s not blue, it’s transformed, you know, it’s changed color and then… ambar and then black and silence. Yeah, so it was an experience…

 

 

TILDA SWINTON:

 

 

You know, Blue was originally a concert, it wasn’t—it was an experience, it wasn’t a film, we did a series of Blue concerts and then after the fact we we–you know, Derek decided to make it as a film he was losing his sight at that time and blue was kind of all he could see, uhm, and actually Simon Fisher Turner was my great friend and Conrad who did all the music for Derek’s films, he and I are working together still–forever, uhm, there’re going to be some Blue concerts in December –you listen, listen to the sound of the wind in that that fantastic tree of that…– So BLUE goes on

 

 

APICHATPONG WEERASETHAKUL: 

 

 

This December?

 

 

TILDA SWINTON: 

 

 

Yeah, we’re gonna do some…

 

 

APICHATPONG WEERASETHAKUL: 

 

 

Where at?

 

 

TILDA SWINTON: 

 

 

I think in Paris and I’m not quite sure, but… yeah, it rolls on

 

 

  • Arranque sonido de prendido de “proyector”

 

  • Voz MUBI (ELVIS)


Part Two

 

  • “Beep” como de arranque de roll

 

  • Música (se queda de fondo para el arranque de la conversación, desaparece en fade out)

 

 

[FRAGMENTO DEL TRÁILER DE MEMORIA]

GOLPE

– It’s uhm like, like a rumble

– GOLPE

– From the core of the Earth. 

– GOLPE ¡Bang!

– And, and then it shrinks. 

– CASCABEL

 

  • VOZ MUBI: 


You just listened to an excerpt of Memoria, by Apichatpong Weerasethakul

 

  • Continuación de conversación

 

 

APICHATPONG WEERASETHAKUL: 

 

 

How, how did you feel when you first saw the film? I think it’s a cut that it’s really similar to the final film… 

 

 

TILDA SWINTON:

 

 

Yeah, yeah, it’s, it was similar in terms of its shape, it was some, you know, some effects that weren’t there, the effects of the end weren’t there, they were indicated but they weren’t fully there and of course, it has to be said, it’s one thing to see on a relatively a small screen and it’s another thing to see it on that beautiful screen in Cannes with that sound system so I feel very blessed to have that as my second screening and you know, of course we have to urge everybody to go and see it on the biggest screen as possible.

 

 

APICHATPONG WEERASETHAKUL: 

 

 

I just feel that, that the experience in Cannes was like my first, actually, because I tried to think “why? You know? It’s different from when I checked in the theater in Thailand” and I think maybe it’s because of the people (…) 

 

 

TILDA SWINTON:

 

 

Yeah. 

 

 

APICHATPONG WEERASETHAKUL: 

 

 

(…) to be sitting among, you know, the crowd and together, you know, anticipating this… join the journey… yeah. 

 

 

TILDA SWINTON:

 

 

I mean, I’ve sat in that room many times and the attention of the audience for that screening was quite exceptional. I… it was, it was so quiet that I wondered that whether they were going to go suddenly or stand up and walk out because they were horrified… 

 

 

APICHATPONG WEERASETHAKUL: 

 

 

Or sleep.

 

 

TILDA SWINTON:

 

 

I mean, it was… Or there would suddenly be a collective snore. I mean, it was one or the other because they were so still and so locked, I now realize, because the response was so, uh, welcoming afterwards but I think they were in an experience so totally… and of course, I hope that might’ve been the case two years ago when we were hoping to show the film but this particular Cannes, that particular audience, this year, having not being able to show it last year when we intended to show it, Cannes having being postponed, this audience was so grateful, I felt, I mean I felt it’s right the entire festival but there’s something very beautiful going on right now and I have to say with big cinema, it’s… people were so nervous for a while that we were never going to be able to go back into the big cinema, so to go back in and to… everyone has been so thirsty for so long, they’re like *hace ruido de estar sorbiendo* drinking it up…

 

 

 

APICHATPONG WEERASETHAKUL: 

 

 

It’s like we were kids again, no?

 

 

TILDA SWINTON:

 

 

Totally. Enchantment is the word. I felt like it was an enchanted audience and that’s a great spirit to go into this particular film because this film is really asking of you, that you leave everything outside (…)

 

 

APICHATPONG WEERASETHAKUL: 

 

 

Yes.

 

 

TILDA SWINTON:

 

 

(…) and you just dive in. 

 

 

APICHATPONG WEERASETHAKUL: 

 

 

You’ve told me during the shooting that, you know, “Joe, you know, in other film makings, maybe Hollywood, it’s not like this, you know? The way that, uh, you or Joon or other people work, you know?” But how do you feel, because for me it’s I feel like a friend and, but still I know that you invest so much time for this film, you know? To be in Colombia for, I don’t know, months and go to Pijao and live… 

 

 

TILDA SWINTON:

 

 

But you know, Joe, I mean, it’s, it’s… for me, and this is a very, you know, quite an intense thing to say but for me to be working with you and to work in the way that we’re working now regularly, I mean, not just working on Memoria, but now continuing our work together and talking about the future, for me it’s not only the revelation of something new but it’s also a return to my roots in filmmaking because the way I started to work as a filmmaker was with Derek Jarman in a very similar way and I worked with him for nine years in this way and so it’s a really blessed thing after all this time and all this sort of skirmishes and interesting adventures I’ve been on with other filmmakers and in a variety of really disparate filmmaking environments… it’s a homecoming for me to work with you, it’s all the way in which you work, the way in which you make it possible for me to work and all our colleagues, it’s the thing that I started with and it’s the thing that I love the most and so it’s both what’s old about it, it’s very natural and very, and very comfortable but what’s new about it is just this revelation that it’s still there and so for me it’s a, beyond a blessing to be working with you, it’s about… the filmmaking environment, what Derek taught all of us, ahm, didn’t teach us but just exposed us to, was that it’s all about the process and it’s about this community, is a collective experience, not just collective with the filmmakers but also with the audience and that’s what you bring with you and what you’re interested in as I understand that your relationship with your audience and your relationship with all of us as filmmakers with you is very similar, very very keen to the way Derek as a director… which again, is a word that I feel I have a kind of ambivalence about because, one thing again that we learned with Derek was that we are all filmmakers and yes, at a certain point one has to figure out, you know, you’re the director and I’m the performer and someone else is the costume designer and someone else is going to hold the boom but actually we’re all filmmakers and we’re all working together and that’s, that’s a thing that, that I really cherish, probably the reason that I, I’m still, still interested in working, I suppose. 

 

 

APICHATPONG WEERASETHAKUL: 

 

 

And I was thinking “What does Tilda feel?, you know, what– Did you feel lost as I was? You know, that what is this thing? You know, what am I doing here and–or being in this tunnel?, which is really hard for me, I admit that is, I lose many time, this direction in that place because it’s full of dust and sound and something that I sometimes couldn’t focus. And I was always thinking about you, in particular, like, how would you… what do you anchor on during the shoot? Yeah.

 

 

TILDA SWINTON:

 

 

I think, since you use the word, uhm if I felt lost, I enjoyed feeling lost. I think I found that and really enjoyed the… Yeah, the lack of… that that we had, that you gave me and that we together encourage ourselves to, to be modest in our gestures, and, and to look for modest gestures and to, to, to really enjoy the simplicity of presen–just presence. For me, that’s such a relief. And, and as I say, I think it’s, it’s not a relief, because it’s something new that I’ve never experienced, I think it’s something that I really, really like, and I’ve always loved, and it’s something very, very old established for me. It it means that I can be quite –uh– light, just be light, not have to carry it uhm—I mean it reconnected me with a, a sense of quietness. I mean, I’m, as you know, knowing each other, being being close friends, I’m actually a quiet person, and I, and in the, in the world of filmmaking, I’ve had to encourage myself to be more, just more connected and more social than I think naturally I would think I– And so Jessica was like, an oasis of quietness for me. And that also goes for her, you know, lack of biographical detail, or any of that sort of burden, just her being this, this ghost presence, moving through spaces that for me, that was really just delicious! I loved that. So yes, if I felt lost, that’s something I wanna feel. I don’t really like knowing what I’m doing. I try not to as much as possible.

 

 

APICHATPONG WEERASETHAKUL: 

 

 

For me is a discovery because I know you as you, uhm, and when I wrote it I don’t know who this person is and there’s a link of Jessica Holland in, I wanted a zombie, but of course here she’s more active and then I think I kind of slowly discovered, together, or maybe with this character that you delivered for me, you know? Trough spaces and I don’t know, how do you feel? Maybe you didn’t know either this person… 

 

 

TILDA SWINTON:

 

 

It’s funny because I realized, cause we were together in Doha, in Qatar, at the ahm, at QUMRA, the the the sort of kind of workshop there and we were developing all the time this… it wasn’t even the ideas, it was the environment. We were always looking for a kind of way of working and I remember there talking in general about my kind of sheepishness cause I was asked to give a so-called “Master Class” about performance and… or even worse, being an actor which is something that I feel very awkward about because I don’t really identify as an actor because I have nothing really to say about acting, I’m not really interested in it, even though I’m aware that I have been popping up in films roughly speaking described as an actor for over thirty years so I realized haven’t really got much much of a like to stand on in this but I tried to explain in the course of this Master Class what I really felt about what might, not even what my task is but what my interest is and I remember you finding that useful in developing the idea of how we might work together and also what this portrait of Jessica might be. So she’s not a character, I mean, I think of her as a predicament, really, it’s the portrait of someone in a predicament and that’s it, there’s really nothing else that we really provide, we provide a series of circumstances, she’s a, she’s an alien in the sense that she’s an outsider in the country, she also very importantly doesn’t speak the language fluently, I find that very significant and, and a very fruitful and rich territory and, as you know, very interested in articulosy and I like the portrait of someone who can’t express themselves with words very well because then it opens up a whole vista of other ways of expressing. With movement, with silence, with the way in which they listen, the way in which they respond, it makes them much less, uh, active in a way (…)

 

 

APICHATPONG WEERASETHAKUL: 

 

 

Right.

 

 

TILDA SWINTON:

 

 

(…) and so having talked about this and having realized that this was something that in general I was interested in I think you then took that after QUMRA, after this experience in Doha and you kind of– then you developed the path, let’s say, not the character, but the path of the journey of Jessica and I was, I was so grateful to you that you didn’t even, you weren’t interested in, in explaining anything about her history… you know, there’s very very tangent short details about we know that she’s been an orchid farmer somewhere in a finca outside Medellín, that’s all we know (…)

 

 

APICHATPONG WEERASETHAKUL: 

 

 

Right.

 

 

TILDA SWINTON:

 

 

(…) there’s talk of her husband and there’s talk of his death certificate and he’s referred to twice… 

 

 

APICHATPONG WEERASETHAKUL: 

 

 

That’s it, no?

 

 

TILDA SWINTON:

 

 

That’s it! And I love that, because that, that just brings up so much possibility… 

 

 

[AGREGAR FRAGMENTO SONORO DE LA PELÍCULA]

Jessica: Es como una bola enorme de concreto que cae en fondo de metal rodeada de agua de mar

 

 

  • VOZ MUBI: 


You just listened to an excerpt of Memoria, by Apichatpong Weerasethakul

 

 

TILDA SWINTON:

 

 

I mean, I’ve said many times and it continues to be true that I think when I think of performances, when I think of, of, of what what presence… it’s more presences, what presences, what cinematic presences, you know, sometimes I’m asked “what’s the most inspiring performance you can think of?” I, I always think of the donkey in Bresson’s Au hasard Balthazar I think of the, Bresson talked about models, he didn’t talk about actors and you didn’t… and he was looking for a kind of animal presence, those are my words, I’m putting them into his mouth, I’m looking for an animal presence and when I, when I see the kind of presence that the donkey or, let’s face it, there’re probably several donkeys because… but they all, but they all add together in the, in the shooting of the film to add up to the performance of Balthazar there’s something that that… -There’s a noise in the background but I’m gonna keep going… because I’m going to, because everybody knows we’re sitting in a garden in Bogotá, just wanted to mention, uhm, (ríe)– but that the presence of that donkey all that donkeys do is experiencing… 

 

 

APICHATPONG WEERASETHAKUL: 

 

 

Experiencing. 

 

 

TILDA SWINTON:

 

 

Just experiencing and I’m, and that’s really good for the aud… that’s something the audience gets from that which I love the opportunity to try and give them in a portrait of something like Jessica and I hope that when the audience is watching Jessica, they least stop one dream about what she’s thinking or, or what her story is. I hope that at a certain point they give that up (…) 

 

 

APICHATPONG WEERASETHAKUL: 

 

 

Yes.

 

 

TILDA SWINTON:

 

 

(…) and they just, they can be with her and they can just… their ears open and they listen and they look and they just experience with her. 

 

 

APICHATPONG WEERASETHAKUL: 

 

 

Yeah. I think animals is a big point to… because I’m reading one guru now, a philosopher, and he mentions about being just experiencing that you mention. And sometimes I wonder if it’s possible, you know? To, to live our lives like that, without memory, actually, without concepts that shape us how we approach situations and, and I don’t know, I think during this time, last past year, I, and you too, were dogs (…)

 

 

TILDA SWINTON:

 

 

Yeah. 

 

 

APICHATPONG WEERASETHAKUL: 

 

 

(…) I were dogs and for me I observed them… 

 

 

TILDA SWINTON:

 

 

Oh, they are teachers, I mean really that’s again will sound like a highly kind of pretentious thing to say but truly practically they are our teachers. 

 

 

APICHATPONG WEERASETHAKUL: 

 

 

Yeah, yeah. 

 

 

TILDA SWINTON:

 

 

And you know, another, another sort of key for me in, in touching this kind of experience is my experience of grief and I remember when we were developing Memoria you, you had the autobiographical contribution of your bang! and your insomnia and, and during the years that we were developing the project I experienced the death of my father in particular, my mother, in fact also my mother and I talked to you about what grief, what the experience of grief was for me and I think that informed the project because, in a nutshell, my, I think everybody experiences grief differently, but for me it was… the first thing I could say was that it was as if all narratives stopped. 

 

 

APICHATPONG WEERASETHAKUL: 

 

 

What do you mean?

 

 

TILDA SWINTON:

 

 

I mean that’s the trauma for me in the first instance of bereavement is that you lo–I lost my attachment to narrative, I lost my way with how the days, the years, I couldn’t visualize, you know, so the person dies and I could not figure out what the next week was going to be, what the next year, what the next month was going to be, I was, in a way, brought into the present moment by grief. It was really productive in that way, it was, it was very practical, it was, you know… and whenever anybody I know is griefed, I always suggest to them that they go really carefully with themselves through every hour of the day because that feeling of discombobulation, that feeling of dislocation is very strong and it can be really confusing. Now, as I understand it, this is what this pandemic, the last two years, let’s face it, of the pandemic (…) 

 

 

APICHATPONG WEERASETHAKUL: 

 

 

And continue… 

 

 

TILDA SWINTON:

 

 

(…) has been for all of us, it’s been a sort of grief, grief experience because we haven’t been able to stay connected to “oh, next summer I’m going to go on holiday and next winter my daughter is going to get married” all of that has been just (hace un sonido de que corta algo) cut and we have been taken back to living each day, each hour at a time and I think a lot of people have found that really challenging and frightening because society kind of lives by its web, doesn’t it? And… but so I’ve experienced the last two years as a sort of grief light, if you like (…)

 

 

APICHATPONG WEERASETHAKUL: 

 

 

Yeah. But when you grieve for someone, you know, I think, in your case, were you also thinking about death, like dying in terms of your own mortality? 

 

 

TILDA SWINTON:

 

 

Yeah.

 

 

APICHATPONG WEERASETHAKUL: 

 

 

And…

 

 

TILDA SWINTON:

 

 

I mean, I’m talking specifically, I mean, I’ve, I’ve experienced grieving for people younger, I think griefing for people who die earlier in their lives is a different thing, I experienced it different because of course then what you’re dealing with is carrying the fantasy of “oh, they died too young” and then you have all these fantasies of what they would have done as an old person and you know there’s… in a way, that’s a security blanket because you can retain that fantasy and it sort of keeps you warmth for a bit. Sometimes out of a sense of outrage or sometimes the sense of…. you, you keep the narrative going in your mind “oh, what a wonderful old man Derek Jarman would have been” or “how many films would he have made” or whatever… But when someone is very very old, that’s a different challenge and it’s almost a sharper challenge, I find, because you don’t have the comfort… When my father was ninety three he was at the end of the track, I mean, you couldn’t say “oh, you know, gosh, what he would have done with another twenty years”. No, I mean, he was really at an animal reaching the end of the line and that’s, that of course ties you in as well, you go “Oh, I hope I get… you know, I hope I go like that”. I mean, that’s kind of, he had a blessed passing, it was beautiful and I had, you know, I read the Tibetan Book of Living and Dying a lot while I was with him, while he was dying and it’s a very tortuous and sort of, you know, it’s a piece of work.

 

 

APICHATPONG WEERASETHAKUL:

 

 

Right, right. But it also can be liberating (…)

 

 

TILDA SWINTON:

 

 

Entirely.

 

 

APICHATPONG WEERASETHAKUL: 

 

 

(…) to embrace that that we is our nature, how you say? Because I think death is such a powerful event that we all get there but we try not to think about it all the time but…

 

 

TILDA SWINTON:

 

 

And that’s such a waste. 

 

 

APICHATPONG WEERASETHAKUL: 

 

 

Right, but I mean if we accept it and we think about it, of practice even, you know, like a holiday it’s like something we look forward to and it will kill this myth…

 

 

TILDA SWINTON:

 

 

Something to prepare for and of course again, it’s banal to say because it’s so obvious but the closest, anybody who’s had this experience that I was so blessed to have of helping somebody to, to die as it were to support them while they went through the process, the closest thing it comes to, in my experience is birth, it’s exactly like waiting for a child. 

 

 

APICHATPONG WEERASETHAKUL: 

 

 

Yeah. 

 

 

TILDA SWINTON:

 

 

They’re very, very, very similar. You’re sort of waiting for this transformation to take place and for this beginning and… 

 

 

APICHATPONG WEERASETHAKUL: 

 

 

Right, right.

 

 

TILDA SWINTON:

 

 

And, as you say, it brings up this question in your mind “how do I want to go and how, what can I do to prepare for that?”

 

 

APICHATPONG WEERASETHAKUL: 

 

 

It’s so linked with what you mention before about you don’t feel like you’re an actor, you know, because I, you know, there’s a monk that I listen to and, you know, he mentions about that we shouldn’t tie ourselves to anything and that’s so beautiful, you know, that when someone asks me “Who are you?”, you know, I, if I can, I don’t want to say that I’m a filmmaker or I’m an artist, you know? Because you tie to that identity, you know?

 

 

TILDA SWINTON:

 

 

Exactly. 

 

 

APICHATPONG WEERASETHAKUL: 

 

 

And then when you get whatever order or you incapable of doing what you do, you think what your identity is, you become, you collapse, you just lose this self that “Oh, one day I cannot make a film and what should I live for?” So that’s the danger of attachment to this idea of career or… yeah. And that is the same, no? We just accept that we don’t, we just not identify with the body, with this idea of we are we, but we just liberate like “we are the trees, we are a part of this environment”, you know? And then one day we just change. 

 

 

TILDA SWINTON:

 

 

Yeah, we transform but then again, we are all dying all the time, every day, that’s what the—that’s the point. It’s all ongoing, it’s not like there’s some kind of hard edge to any of this, there’s no decision, I think, I think there’s so much attachment to the idea of will that we have, we have it in our power to, to decide, to become old or to decide not to become old or to decide to recognize that we’re dying. It’s happening, you know? This– It’s never ending, cha, cha, changes, it’s just all we got. And, uhm… 

 

 

APICHATPONG WEERASETHAKUL: 

 

 

I’m so want to make a film about this, again, to really… actually is for a reminder, to self-reminder, so to people…  

 

 

TILDA SWINTON:

 

 

But I think that children know this, again, it’s like what I was saying about… you know, finding working with you is a reminder of something very elemental for me and I think children know all the things we’re talking about. They know about changes because they have to experience changes again on a daily basis and they have to have a kind of humility about change because… and then this point comes when society encourages us to become more fixed or to attach ourselves to things and take pride in our ability to be willfull or in control but it’s really a mirage, it’s not true, we’re not in control. 

 

 

APICHATPONG WEERASETHAKUL: 

 

 

Right, right. And to know that is for me happiness… 

 

 

TILDA SWINTON:

 

 

Complete happiness. And it is, it is connected to what we were talking about, about the state of Jessica in this film, this thing of her being like water, her being, and I use this phrase, you know, for a reason, out of control, she is not actually, she is, she is, she doesn’t know when this bang! is coming, she’s, she knows that she wants to buy a fridge, that’s almost (ríe), that’s it, that’s probably on her list of willful actions, that’s almost… and the fact that she goes to visit Jeanne Balibar’s portrait is, is, that’s a decision she makes but even that is introduced to her by someone else. She, she’s following the river and, but she decides she wants to go on to buy a fridge, that’s almost the only thing, really, that she decides and… 

 

 

APICHATPONG WEERASETHAKUL: 

 

 

But she’s confronting with death all the time and in fact resisted a bit, you know, when she decides to buy this fridge for her dying orchids and you know, look at this skeleton, you know? There’s always a reminder of time, you know, of the… and yeah… So I think you can look at it in different ways and that’s so nice to discover.

 

 

TILDA SWINTON:

 

 

But there’s also this very very tender moment for me in the film is when Elkin, the older Hernan by the river, when he dies in front of her and she asks him “what was it like?” and he says “what?” and she says “death” and he says “I just stopped”…  

 

 

APICHATPONG WEERASETHAKUL: 

 

 

Yeah, nothing. 

 

 

TILDA SWINTON:

 

 

Nothing, just stopped. It’s, it incredibly resonated, it’s the wisest thing I can imagine anybody saying about death. That’s what it is, just stop and, and for her that’s, that’s a real contribution because if, if, if we’re reading her as someone who is negotiating grief, it’s really useful for her to have that perspective.

 

 

APICHATPONG WEERASETHAKUL: 

 

 

Right, right.

 

 

[AGREGAR FRAGMENTO SONORO DE LA PELÍCULA]

 

 

APICHATPONG WEERASETHAKUL:

 

 

For me, and for the team members, it’s such a gift, when we were shooting many scenes, and the last scene in particular– is that the last scene of our shooting we’d do?

 

 

TILDA SWINTON:

 

 

The last scene was the last scene we shot, yeah.

 

 

APICHATPONG WEERASETHAKUL: 

 

 

You know, that emotional long take. 

 

 

TILDA SWINTON:

 

 

Yeah.

 

 

APICHATPONG WEERASETHAKUL: 

 

 

I don’t know how you did, but I mean, I guided you, but I feel that is not me, it’s something that, uhm—How do you say?– that all of us, you know, we were sitting there, and I remember when we say cut, many of the team are in tears, you know, and it was such a a an experience to witness that. Yeah. And then when “cut!” “You just come back?” You just went to see the piglets.

 

 

TILDA SWINTON:

 

 

Yes. Oh, yes. That was so wonderful that while we were shooting for the over those days, that all these piglets were being born. I think eventually it was something like 26 –I mean, it’s this massive sound

 

 

APICHATPONG WEERASETHAKUL: 

 

 

Never ending 

 

 

TILDA SWINTON:

 

 

Never ending, an in between every take, I would go and see how many more there were. And it was, but it was also… seemingly felt absolutely organic that this scene was very much about death somehow, but there were these piglets being born… and pigs, of course are, you know… among all of my more favorite animals on the planet and I identify with pigs.

 

 

  • Música (se queda hasta el final de la conversación)

 

 

TILDA SWINTON:

 

 

I don’t know if it makes any sense, I don’t know what you can do with that

 

 

APICHATPONG WEERASETHAKUL: 

 

 

But we never had a chance to talk like this, thank you for this

 

 

TILDA SWINTON: 

 

 

No, it’s lovely!

 

 

RICARDO: 

 

 

Actually it’s fantastic, you’ve been great, you’ve been really generous with everyone.

 

 

TILDA SWINTON:

 

 

And you know…

 

 

RICARDO:

 

 

Yeah?

 

 

TILDA SWINTON:

 

 

Ev–every conversation Joei and I have is more seeds for another film, so thank you for massaging even more the next one 

 

 

  • Sonido de que se acaba el segundo rollo/carrete como en proyecciones análogas

 

  • ID DE CIERRE (CON MÚSICA DE CRÉDITOS)

 

  • Voz MUBI

 

  • Nombre del podcast

ENCUENTROS, a podcast by MUBI, an ever-changing collection of incredible hand-picked cinema.

 

  • ID sonoro – Presentación del podcast.

 

A new film every single day. A new conversation each episode.

 

  • Voz MUBI (ELVIS):

Check out season 1 and 2 of MUBI Podcast: Encuentros, a podcast in Spanish by MUBI and La Corriente del Golfo Podcast. Twelve episodes that pair off prominent Latin American voices who engage in lively, in-depth conversations about cinema and culture.

MUBI Encuentros is available worldwide across all podcast platforms. You can also listen to it at lacorrientedelgolfo.net where you’ll find a series of complementary

 

 

  • CRÉDITOS (Voz Elvis):

We hope you enjoyed this Special Episode of Encuentros, by MUBI, our very first podcast in English, with Apichatpong Weerasethakul and Tilda Swinton.

Idea: Efe Cakarel, Sandra Gómez, Jon Barrenechea and Ricardo Giraldo

 

Production and conceptual supervision: Ricardo Giraldo

Executive producers: Efe Cakarel, Sandra Gómez, Jon Barrenechea, Diego Luna,

Gael García Bernal and Paula Amor 

Sound design: Javier Umpiérrez

 

Music Score: Andrés Solís

 

Research, script and transcriptions: Andrés Suárez

 

Production coordinator, script and transcriptions: Fernando Peña

 

Recording in Bogotá: Camilo Martínez

 

Voice: Elvira Liceaga

 

Special thanks to Diana Bustamante, Mateo Suárez, Yeily Antonio, TocTalk Comunicaciones and Marty Stewart Minnich

 

This conversation was recorded at Hotel Casa Legado (Bogotá, Colombia)

 

La Corriente Del Golfo Podcast and MUBI copyright 2022