Siberia trailer: Abel Ferrara’s “acting alter ego” Willem Dafoe looks to reclaim his soul

The two long-time friends team up again in a film exploring the nature of dreams

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It was only last year that Dafoe starred in a semi-autobiographical film about the life of director Abel Ferrara in Tommaso, and the two are working together once again in Siberia which premieres at Berlinale in competition today. The two are long-time friends and have worked together a number of times throughout their career and judging by the trailer this one looks as arthouse as ever. The dense synopsis below doesn’t make things any clearer, although the one-liner on IMDb says it is “an exploration into the language of dreams” which perhaps sheds a little more light on what we see in the two-minute reel. Watch the Siberia trailer above to see what you make of it.

A man flees from one world to another that is strange and cold. Furs and fires keep him warm; a cave serves as his shelter. He is a broken man who wants to be alone. But even isolation does not bring him inner peace. Once again, he goes on a journey, this time into the self. He explores his dreams, confronts memories and seeks out visions. The rare encounters with other people are in languages he does not speak, determined by bodies that fascinate him, and by types of love he explores and then loses. His journey becomes a dance with demons, but time and again it flares up: light. In cinema history there have been many attempts to portray the mythical as something intimate, and the radical as a personal journey. But there is only one artist who is as wildly anarchistic, metaphysically mysterious, and at the same time god-obsessed and fanatical about the truth: Abel Ferrara, joining forces here once again with his acting alter ego, Willem Dafoe. While his previous film Tommaso explored the way desire plays out in families, in Siberia the (male) ego abandons all semblance of everyday life in a tumultuous montage. To expose and discover himself.

Ferrara also co-wrote the script, with Dounia Sichov, Simon McBurney, Cristina Chiriac, Daniel Giménez Cacho all in support of Dafoe.

Steven Sheehan

Updated: Feb 24, 2020

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Siberia trailer: Abel Ferrara’s “acting alter ego” Willem Dafoe looks to reclaim his soul | The Digital Fix