Not many films have been as effective at conveying emotion as this single frame from Victoria:
It captures the emotional energy that I know from love and music. I also find the film to be beautiful, despite — and partly because of — its single-take nature.
The audio commentary with director Sebastian Schipper is especially noteworthy. In addition to technical details and anecdotes, he shared some more general thoughts. What follows are translated transcripts of my favourite parts. See the footnotes for German versions.
The status of young people
A big topic for me, doing Victoria, was young people in this world. I sometimes feel like this world is telling young people in their twenties, we don't actually need you. Maybe we want your best people, but we don't actually need you. We have solved all problems. (Well, haha!) But somehow it's all working out, and this is the first generation where it's really questionable if they're going to have it better than their parents. That is, I believe, what connects Victoria and Sonne here.
I sometimes feel like humans' default setting is to be solitary. Kids are solitary; young people are more or less solitary. At some point, this stops. At some point, we are taught that solidarity has a naiveté to it and that you have to look after yourself. That you shouldn't think too much about the others, that you shouldn't share too much and that that would be too naive. And that life just isn't that way.
Of course, you have good moments in school, and you learn things and meet different people, but the whole concept of school is also very brutal, and I have noticed the one way you have to do it, and everyone has to learn it. Everyone has to do it in this one way, and if that works for you, you get an A, but those who don't manage get a D, E, or F.
For me it's about being alone in the world. These moments in which you feel like an existence. I believe that all the pain comes from there.
Filmmaking is whacky shit. Wild and unpredictable. And it is grounded on solidarity. Those who try to take that out of filmmaking shouldn't be surprised if it goes awry.