film December 20, 2015 By Sophie Mollart

fbf image 3 Frame by FrameI think there’s a kind of camaraderie between photographers and filmmakers that have worked there; they feel very warm and nostalgic about their time in the region. Its wild to have people come up after screenings and say, I’m Afghan, or my son was in the military, or I was there in the seventies. It’s been very emotional in that regard.”

Initially conceived as a short-film, Bombach was captivated by Afghan culture and the lives of the people she documented and eventually decided to expand the project into a deeper exploration of the role of photography plays the creation, and preservation, of a personal and political identity. “I’ve always been really attracted to the medium of photography – everyone can relate to photography – not everyone can make films, not everyone paints or writes, but everyone can relate to photography. So much of this movie is trying to get an audience to relate on a personal level with Afghans. So often Afghans and Muslims in general are described in terms of their ‘otherness’.”

The film is an intimate exploration of both a nation emerging after upheaval, and the critical role photography plays in our lives. As Bombach describes, “The camera feels like a shield, you feel invincible behind it.” Without neglecting the horrors of recent history, it embraces the lives of individuals on an intimate level, documenting a kind of day-to-day minutiae that personalizes the stories so often buried under news reports, creating a moving appeal to the critical power of image-making.

Frame by Frame

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