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Green Desert

A young woman sits in a room with red walls. One step over the threshold and a mystical journey through the Green Desert begins. The film deals with the potential of crises to reinvent our imaginations for new futures. Green Desert shows an existential walk through vast and empty, green landscapes with strange encounters. This world seems rigid and alienated but: there is still space for hope and radical dreams.

  • Carolina Schmidt
  • Carolina Schmidt
  • Carolina Schmidt
  • Carolina Schmidt
  • Elsa Böhm
    Key Cast
  • Georg Papadelis
    Director of Photography
  • Magdalena Umkehrer
    Production Design
  • Julia Kressirer
    Production Design
  • Hanna Schmidt
  • Xenia Stütz-Pribik
  • Sebastian Schönefeld
  • Sarah Friedl
  • David Graudenz
  • Theresa Klotz
  • Julia Kressirer
  • Simone Kaltenbrunner
  • Eugenia Goffre
    VFX Artist
  • Florian Schaubmaier
    Sound Postproduction
  • Anna Hadaier
    2nd AC
  • Rolf Kassalicky zebra-stelzen.de
    Stils Artists
  • Arthur Fuchs
    Stils Artists
  • Project Title (Original Language):
    Grüne Wüste
  • Project Type:
    Experimental, Short, Student, Other
  • Runtime:
    11 minutes 20 seconds
  • Completion Date:
    March 31, 2022
  • Production Budget:
    2,000 EUR
  • Country of Origin:
  • Country of Filming:
    Austria, Germany
  • Shooting Format:
  • Aspect Ratio:
  • Film Color:
  • First-time Filmmaker:
  • Student Project:
    Yes - University of Applied Sciences, Salzburg
  • Flimmern & Rauschen - Bayerisches Kinder- und Jugendfilmfestival
    April 1, 2022
    Official Selection - Nomination category: Media schools
  • Offscreen: FUTURE SHORTS
    April 20, 2022
    Official Selection
  • Sarajevo Youth Film Festival
    Bosnia and Herzegovina
    July 20, 2022
    Official Selection - Main Competition
  • 16th Internationales Fünf Seen Filmfestival

    Short Film Competition
  • Tetova International Film Festival

    August 26, 2022
    Win Panorama - Student Film
  • Alexandre Trauner Art/Film Festival

    October 14, 2022
    Official Selection
  • Austrian Film Festival
    October 13, 2022
    Winner: Best Experimental Film 2022
  • Lima Alterna International Film Festival
    October 18, 2022
    South American Premiere
    Official Selection
  • 9th Short Movie Club Film Festival Nefiltravanae Kino
    March 23, 2023
    Winner: Best Video Art + Special Mention by the Jury. Last remaining openly anti-war film festival in Belarus. Free Ukraine.
  • Under The Radar - Festival and Conference for Artistic Film, Animation and Experimental Sequential Media
    Special Mention by the Jury
  • 8. Other Movie Lugano Film Festival
    April 30, 2024
    Official Selection
  • Photometria in Motion/ Photometria International Photography Festival

    Official Selection
Director Biography - Carolina Schmidt

After finishing school, Peruvian-German director and music composer Carolina Schmidt (1997) spent a year at a creative Lab (International Munich Art Lab) where she experimented in the fields of fine arts and new media. She discovered her passion for film which led her to studying Multimediaart in Salzburg with a semester abroad at the University of Newcastle (AUS), where she focused on film history and documentary film. After finishing an internship at Documentary Campus e.V. and her graduation film Green Desert, she is now studying cultural anthropology and environmental humanities in Munich and continues follow her passion for daydreaming and making strange, playful and mystical films, art and music.

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Director Statement

I made Green Desert after reading Ursula Le Guin's Carrier Bag Theory of Fiction which inspired me to look for a Carrier Bag Style of Filmmaking. Le Guin asks: Was the first instrument of humans really a weapon of domination or rather, a Carrier Bag? The greatest invention, then, were not the long, hard, killing tools but the container; to collect food, stories, things, ideas. This inspires not only the story we tell ourselves about 'human nature' but, for Le Guin, her science fiction writing. Instead of the male centered, linear, simplified hero-story (Story of weapon), Le Guin tells feminist stories of Carrier Bags, that are not reduced to the hero solving a conflict, but rather collect the many worlds of this world, the stories, identities, the mundane and the boring, and put them all into relation to each other. These stories are much closer to real life, because life, human life, is not a hero story, it is not the story of the weapon.

Green Desert is a Carrier Bag, too. We see a woman, or maybe me, walking through the world, creating a story, that does not the binary conflicts narrative. There are no dualisms, no parties that are good or bad, there is ambiguity, and openness. I am particularly interested in the magic of everyday life – the mundane, the seemingly normal, the routines, and the small things. They reflect the myths we tell ourselves about the world, life, masculinities, ‘nature’. Like a Carrier Bag, Green Desert does not foreground one or the other; in the circular shape of a bag, all things in it, even the most mundane, have a chance to be foregrounded.

Green Desert is a feminist re-telling of walking through the world, of being alive. The main character is not here to solve a quest, to fight an enemy, to reveal a secret, to extract nature's truths. Instead of linearity, a clear beginning and a definitive end, Green Desert is about the ongoingness of stories and the plurality of stories. In the last scene, after the film 'ends', the character is seen walking and walking, further away from the camera.

Green Desert, ultimately, is on the one hand a filmic experimentation against dominant forms of filmmaking shaped by conquest, domination, linearity, dualisms, binarity.
But it also is a counter-idea to the dominant assumptions about 'humanity', human nature, linear time and the purpose of life.