After much praise at film festivals internationally, the first feature film directed by Pentagram partner Marina Willer is now being released on Netflix. Red Trees tells the story of Marina’s family, one of 12 Jewish families to escape the Nazi occupation of Prague. It is co-narrated by Marina’s father Alfred, who witnessed horrors and survived to build a post-war life as an architect in Brazil, passing on his passion for drawing to his daughter.
Marina explains how the film explores current crises through the narrative of her own family trauma. “It tells the story of my personal journey to understand the shifting world we live in, the refugee crisis, through looking into the steps of my family as migrants who were pushed out of Europe for their Jewish origins,” she says. “Based on my father’s memories who was a child at the time, this is a story of survival and acceptance… The title Red Trees refers to the moment when my father discovered that he was colour blind as a child, drawing trees with red leaves. It makes reference to a world where we would maybe not judge people by their colour or origin."
“[The film] is a glimpse into the fear and hope that refugees experience, it’s a film that looks into the past as an attempt to understand the future.”
Red Trees is shot by Oscar-nominated DOP César Charlone. It will be released on Netflix on 24 March and shown at Hackney Picturehouse, London on 2 May.
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