Viennale-Trailer 2013: Illusions & Mirrors

Shirin Neshat
USA, AUT 2013
2 min

Cinema has truly told us many stories about illusions and mirrors. At first sight, the waves in the opening sequence of ILLUSIONS & MIRRORS, breaking on the shore in white spumes of froth, might also be pure imagination. For as natural as the surf may sound on this deserted beach, as unreal the distorted images of this scenery seem to be. It might be the misty-eyed young woman in a black dress that all of a sudden appears in front of us, whose face and loose long hair are clearly perceived while a dark figure emerges from the blurred image of the dunes. But the next image quickly teaches us otherwise: For although the woman follows the mysterious figure into an empty house, our vision of the two remains refracted as if through a mirror. Is it us who might be falling victim to an illusion – and who must hope for an awakening? “This film pays tribute to black and white silent films by surrealist directors”, says Shirin Neshat. However, ILLUSIONS & MIRRORS also does homage to the film by Samuel Beckett that refers to itself in its very title: a camera, moving across a house, an observer reduced to him or herself – referring to FILM.

  • Natalie Portman - adult Celeste
  • Darius Khondji
  • Johnny Azari
  • Nariman Hamed
  • Johnny Azari
Shirin Neshat im Auftrag der Viennale


35 mm
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