Freeroam └ Rebours Mod#I.1

╗Freeroam └ Rebours, Mod#I.1ź,
created by Stefan Panhans & Andrea Winkler
2016, 4K video, colour/sound, 16:10 min.

The starting point for Freeroam └ Rebours Mod#I.1 lies in deficiencies in the behaviour of
human-controlled avatars in computer games. These 'error scenarios' are then translated
back into the real bodies of performers and restaged using film techniques.
Displacement activities, idling modes, failing to repeat attempted actions, the imperfect
imitation of human movements and gestures and other 'behavioural flaws' by avatars in
the game are usually regarded as inefficiency and incompetence in a society whose
characteristic aims are functionalisation, economy and (self-)optimisation. However, the
film works with just such 'flaws', operating where experimental film, videoclips, performance
and forms of contemporary dance overlap. By restaging and transforming these 'failure
scenarios' of the avatar aesthetic with human performers, the project exemplifies a kind of
practicing insufficiency 'from within', and embraces the defects of the algorithmic machine
instead of longing for its perfection. If one can read into the computer game an ideology of
practicing skills, efficiency, and optimization, the game characters in the video are copied
aesthetics of failure and a choreography of hesitation that are revealing in the context of
current theories of passivity and inefficiency, and formulates an almost utopian content
through the unintentional passivation of the characters in the computer game.
The film was developed in close collaboration with a choreographer who worked intensively
with avatar movements. The camera movement is embedded in the film's movement
choreography, making references to the aesthetics and movement patterns of action
computer games, as does the editing process. The video is accompanied by a digitally
composed soundtrack that, together with the editing, forms the driving, rhythmically
structured montage, unfolding in part in a staged set based on two alienated versions of
a retail space in a computer game.

In dept interview with Matteo Bittanti

Produced and directed by: Stefan Panhans
Concept: Kathrin Busch, Stefan Panhans
Assistant Director, Production Design, Costume: Andrea Winkler
Director of Photography: Lilli Thalgott, Eike Zuleeg
Choreography: Mirjam S÷gner
Editing: Lilli Thalgott
Music: Kirsten Reese
Performing, in order of appearance: Judith Nagel, Lisa-Marie Janke, Anne Ratte-Polle, Matteo Ceccarelli
Ixchel Mendoza Hernandez, Gyung Moo Kim, Olivia Hyunsin Kim, Zwoisaint Boliver Patricia Mears-Clarke
Hannes Wegener
Camera Operators: Lilli Thalgott, Eike Zuleeg, Florian Winkler
Phone Cam and Screer Recordings: Kathrin Busch, Stefan Panhans, Lilli Thalgott, Andrea Winkler
Light: Lilli Thalgott, Eike Zuleg
2nd Assistant Director: Simone Bogner
Set Manager: Kathrin Busch
Casting: Stefan Panhans, Mirjam S÷gner
Make Up and Wardrobe: Muriel Nestler
Postproduction: Wolfgang Oelze
Funded by Medienboard Berlin-Brandenburg

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