Following The Taste of Koumiz (Le Goût du Koumiz) (2003) and The White Camel (La Chamelle Blanche) (2006), Xavier Christiaens now presents Beyond Icebergland (Au-delà des Icebergs), a new free ride into imaginary territories. The film’s point of departure is a poem by Henry Michaux which opens as follows: «Ne peut plus, Iniji / Sphinx, sphères, faux signes / Obstacles sur la route d’Iniji / Rives reculent / Socles s’enfoncent / Monde. Plus de Monde / seulement l’amalgame / Les pierres ne savent plus être des pierres / parmi tous les lits sur terre / Où est le lit d’Iniji ? »

Beyond Icebergland intends to immerse us into a poetic and at the same time metaphysical elsewhere. The voyage starts from the very first seconds of the film, under the spell of an enchanting and irresistible soundtrack, taking us on a gradual discovery of a parallel world wreathed by a dim-coloured aureole, mysterious dark spots and nuclear dazzles. The spectator will, no doubt, find it difficult to assess the degree of reality of the locations, objects and events he will observe on screen. The historical context, however, is exact (the Cold War, conquest of space), the protagonists are identifiable (a woman, a man and a child) and what is at stake is clearly shown: these three protagonists seem to have been assigned to reside in a couple of rooms in a tower in the midst of a huge city. And yet, as the aural and visual layers tangle up, they plunge the spectator into some sort of waking dream, a stupor which makes him rapidly slacken the rational reins. In other words, it is an invitation to lose your way, to be distracted, or maybe even be drowned.

(Source: Olivier Smolders)