In IFFR from January 28th to 31st - Clermont-Ferrand from February 4th to 8th - Berlinale from February 16th to 21st

Directed by

Ghanwa Rana

MAKAN

Makan
Directed by

Ghanwa Rana

Year:

2023

Country:

France, Pakistan

Language:

French & Urdu

Genre:

Drama | Live Action

Runtime:

11 minutes

Synopsis

This is the story of many of us. Those who have left their country, their families, their languages. For a new, perhaps better life. It is the story of my mother, who left everything to join her husband in France. To (re)build a family life, without knowing what awaited her: loneliness, a feeling of strangeness and the difficulty of expressing herself in a language she does not speak. I, Ghanwa, her daughter, slipped into my mother's skin to tell her story.

Cast

Technical crew

Festivals

Why we love it

We can put ourselves in our mother's shoes in an abstract way, but Ghanwa Rana has decided to do it literally. In MAKAN, the director presents us with a sociological experiment: she plays her mother after years of observing her inability to communicate in French. She was a poetess who spoke several languages but found herself plunged into a state of silence.

About the director

Ghanwa Rana started photographing and filming family events at a very young age, using her father's material to imitate him. Her first models wer her sisters and friends. She hasn't followed any photographic studies. She enrolled in a Bachelor's degree in Performing Arts: Theater and Cinema in 2009 at the University of Nanterre in France.

She pursued a second degree in Ethnology. Over the years, she desired to combine her passion for photographic portraits and her studies. It pushes her to turn to a Master's degree in Cinematography with a specialisation in ethnographic film.

In 2016, she obtained a Master 2 Professional entitled Image and Society, at the Faculty of Evry-Val-d'Essonne. In 2015, she wrote and directed her first film for school, named Rêve qui peut about the Parisian wanderings of two homeless "wanderers". It will be screened in 2016 at the International Festival of Audiovisual Programs (FIPA) in the "special sessions" section. 

The same year, she joined Collectif Fusion as a photographer-videographer. She joined, in 2017, Collectif Laisser Passer an initiative by students from University of Saint Denis, as an actor director and co-director on the play: Complots. Screenplay award at the Festival A Contre Sens of University Paris 3 in 2018.

In 2019, she engages in the association Autism'Action 95  with the project La maison des papillons bleues. During several months, as a volunteer, she helps the team of the day care center for autistic children and directs Autonomes. Screened at the first autism fair in Gonesse in November 2019. This short documentary is screened in film theater as the first part of the film The Specials by Nakache and Toledano.

She continues to work on photography and video projects for various associations. In September 2021, she joined the association Les Yeux de l'Ouïe, working in prisons to initiate prisoners to the audiovisual world, as part of their reintegration process. She is the referent of the internal video channel of the Hautes-Seine prison, Nanterre.

MAKAN is her first live-action film.

Intention Note

Makan (transl. Ourdou: The building, where the house is built)

This biographical film is fully inspired by Ghanwa childhood memories of her mother’s dailylife : the walks, the colors of clothes, the readings, the silence, the solitude. And the loneliness that she saw in her for all the years. The feeling of being a stranger in a strange world.

Even though she speaks and writes four languages fluently, Ghanwa’s mother had the feeling of being mute, as she had to learn to speak again when she moved to France.

It was impossible for Ghanwa to find an actress who corresponded to what she expected, who could embody her mother. It was perhaps too intimate to accept that someone else play her role, wear her clothes. So she decided to embody the role, to carry this intimate story entirely by acting and directing it. This is Ghanwa’s mother experience and she carries it inside her. 

French was a barrier for Ghanwa’s mother, locking her into a world where she had to rebuild everything. This soft and rich inner world,  in which Urdu and Farsi poets express themselves, Ghanwa knows it. She took this inner world in her suitcase. It is French language that today Ghanwa dreams and writes her films.

Why we love it

We can put ourselves in our mother's shoes in an abstract way, but Ghanwa Rana has decided to do it literally. In MAKAN, the director presents us with a sociological experiment: she plays her mother after years of observing her inability to communicate in French. She was a poetess who spoke several languages but found herself plunged into a state of silence.