© "Corps humaine" - Alexandre Larose

FOCUS: Trust Me

We find ourselves in the age beyond Oz. We’ve looked behind the curtain. We’ve witnessed the demystification of our representatives, be they cultural or political elites, policymakers or the media. We’ve killed our darlings because we stopped believing in them, because they stopped acting worthy of being believed in. We are faced with a crisis of trust. And so we’ve reached a place resembling a post-truth echo-chamber, a place ripe for extremist and exclusionary thinking as well as proto-fascist trends. Who are we to trust now?

Trust Me—the sentence on which our most basic human interactions are based, our vital private relationships and our communal living, our entire inner and outer relations—is merely an invitation to suspend disbelief. We’ve looked behind the curtain and we’ve found a silver screen, a space for contemplation and clarification. Together with the Uppsala International Short Film Festival (SE) and the more recent ZubrOFFka festival in Bialystok (PL), we will glance at how filmmakers approach the issue of trust, seeking nuances in both historical and contemporary cinema.

The concept itself holds a myriad of facets and their possible meanings. It can be a form of reassurance, a request, an automatism devoid of meaning, or an affirmation of power. The specially curated film programmes and a panel discussion try to delve into these many nuances and—according to last year’s focus, Fear Is Not An Option—beckon the audiences out of the paralysis of perceived inaction and resignation. In the age beyond Oz, the Emerald City continues to exist as long as we continue to trust in it. (Diana Mereoiu)

©"Journal animé" - Donato Sansone


Since 2013 we have invited two festivals every year to dedicate a program to our latest motto: this year, Uppsala International Short Film Festival from Sweden, and the Polish 'ZubrOFFka' also have a focus on Trust Me. Together with VIS' programming contributions, the selections are screened at all three festivals: the triangle-collaboration will premiere on June 3rd in Vienna, subsequently screening in October in Uppsala and in December in Bialystok.

In cooperation with Uppsala International Short Film Festival & ZubrOFFka International Short Film Festival