Description d’un Combat

Director: Chris Marker

In parallel with Dan Geva’s film, “Description of a Memory”, we present the film by Chris Marker that was its inspiration. Awarded a Golden Bear for best documentary at the Berlin Film Festival in 1961, it was dubbed ‘a work of art in which truth is complementary to beauty’. Legendary as a cinematic essayist and audio-visual poet, Chris Marker was one of the most innovative filmmakers to emerge during the postwar era. He has made countless films, videos and related projects, active not only as a director but also writer, producer, and cinematographer.

Working primarily in the arena of nonfiction, Marker rejected conventional narrative techniques, instead staking out a deeply political terrain defined by the use of still images, atmospheric soundtracks, and literate commentary.

In “Description d’un Combat”, Marker’s idiosyncratic style, combining location footage with archival material, builds a complex and personal portrayal. Israel’s demography is explored, from the kibbutzim to the Arab minorities, the orthodox Jews, and the tourists. The "battle" of the title does not refer to the tank-and-artillery variety, but to the inner struggle of Israeli citizens to adapt to a new view of themselves, in a new country.