Honas Trueva: the calm rebel

Horners Trueva was born in 1981 and is a film screenwriter, director and novelist. He comes from a large family of films: his father Fernando Trueva was a film critic of “Nation” and former president of the Spanish Film Association. The film “The Year of Awakening” he directed won the Silver Bear at the Berlin Film Festival in 1986. “Farewell My Concubine” defeated Chen Kaige’s “Farewell My Concubine” and Ang Lee’s “Wedding Banquet” in 1994, won the Oscar for Best Foreign Language Film, and won the Spanish Goya 6 times-including the best feature film, Best director, best original screenplay, best adapted screenplay, best documentary and other awards. His mother, Christina Waite, is a well-known filmmaker and nicknamed the “Queen of Spain” because of her influence in the Spanish film scene. His uncle David Trueva is also a novelist, screenwriter and director. His work “It’s Easy to Live with Closed Eyes” won 3 Goya Awards in 2014, including best film and best original Screenplay and best actress.

Trueva, the eye-catching surname, means resources and fame in the Spanish film circle, and it also means that it is not easy to go out of its own way. Because of this, Honas’s movie style is completely different from his father and uncle: he always works with the same cast and technical team to produce independently, adopts a “self-reliance” approach, no major productions, strong plot And the period drama, there are only the growing up memories and partings of young people in Madrid. Since the filming of his debut “Every Song About Me” in 2010, a total of 5 feature films have been shot, including “The Dreamer”, “On the Road”, “Reconquer” and the latest “August Virgin”. To a certain extent, Honas has established a style that is different from “Spanish cinema”, including his narrative, keynote, reference works, and the way to make and understand the film.

“I don’t know if it’s a good thing or a bad thing, but I have always tried to stay away from my uncle’s more classic narrative tradition, which is to build a story with some characters. Elias Leon (Spanish director) told me a few days ago , “August Virgin” changed the four basic pillars of the film. He said that he is different from me, very structuralism, that is, usually the film is composed of narrative, characters, space and time. I agree with him, I am more and more The farther away from classic movies, away from the construction of that kind of dialogue, away from’doing well, away from the possibility of being a copy. For me, dialogue is not that important, or it exists in another way, I think it is better than pure The narrative is more sensory or descriptive. This makes me start looking for styleless, I know this is to add quotation marks. But more and more I try to disappear in the movie, reduce my existence, reduce my style. ”

Horners emphasized that his desire to stay away from tradition does not mean “I want to make a great movie, just like no one has ever made a movie before.” He kept mentioning the filmmakers who inspired him, including Rohmer, Rossellini, Mekas, Truffaut, Hong Shangxiu. He knows that many filmmakers avoid talking about his reference objects or works, and he On the contrary. In the field of art, there has long been a crude view that Kundera represents avant-gardeism and Goya represents classicism. “But if you think about it, they are actually building their own soil in tradition. This is also Emerson’s idea.”

Horners’ films are very free and have no rigorous structure. He likes to use diary narratives. He sees “August Virgin” as a dialogue with Hou Mai’s “Green Light”, in which a woman living in Paris has no one to vacation with and is very frustrated. “August Virgin” is the opposite. In August when everyone leaves the city for vacation, a woman who lives in Madrid actively decides to stay in her city, facing the same situation in a positive way, exploring her own existence and Identity and other issues. At the beginning of the film, the heroine came to a friend’s house, she was going to borrow this house, they naturally talked about Stanley Cavill and Emerson-Stanley Cavill’s “The City of Speech”, moral perfection Ism and other topics. References to various books are the iconic elements of Horners’ movies, and Horners laughed and said: “At the beginning, it was almost a movie-like suicide.” Starting a movie in this way had too obvious intentions, but he I like to show “inducing your thoughts or references” to give the audience clues as to where the movie is going.

Horners met Emerson through Cavill, and his reading of their works accompanied him for a long time. He read all of Emerson’s essays and diaries, especially Cavill quoted a lot of “belief in oneself.” These readings alternately point to the same concept—inheritance, that is, what a person may receive or has received. Emerson talked about the definition of identity, that is, the idea of ​​establishing one’s identity from scratch—from the city you live in, from the things around you, and from your conversations. He believes that people understand themselves by talking to others.

According to Horners, he is making movies in an increasingly primitive way: movies are pure records of things. “My narrative is getting simpler and simpler. Although I like narrative and I believe in narrative very much, I know it is always there, and it will always come in the end, but I am not obsessed with narrative. On the contrary, I like to go deeper. Studying the sensory, emotional, and the problems that connect things together, these problems constitute a kind of cloth, a tapestry of narrative.” In the interview of the “Cinema Manual”, he also compared the film to a “psychic board”. “: “There are all kinds of things inside, we just need to wait for a shape to gradually appear. I understand film as performance art, just as Hou Mai understands it. You see people moving and connecting, This is very philosophical. Cavill said that by observing people’s behavior, you can understand very complex philosophical ideas when reading text.”

There is a movie paradox that movies are always about the passage of time, but when shooting movies, directors always have no time to shoot this passage. Because of budget and various reasons, everything must be operable or pragmatic. of. Horners believes that only by reducing the so-called operability or practicality can we be more free. “During the filming process, I allowed myself to say: Let’s think about it for two hours (how to shoot), and we’re not shooting now. Sometimes, great filmmakers like Chaplin, Tarkovsky, or Wong Kar-wai can afford it. It’s a waste of time, and we get more time by giving up a lot of things.”

Honas is always photographing the same city-Madrid. When commenting on “Reconquer”, the Spanish newspaper “Nation” believed that Hornas was filming “some Parisian Madrid”. In this regard, Hornas thought he was only photographing the Madrid he was familiar with, that is, its old city. He believes that Madrid is not a particularly cinematic city, because it is not very good for filming, it is noisy, lacks individual characteristics, and sometimes presents a catastrophic sense of order in its architectural style. But this sense of incompleteness, whether it’s good or bad, is what makes Madrid special. “The essence of Madrid is the atmosphere here. It’s interesting that I don’t want to take too much of the city’s landscape, but I want to portray the atmosphere of the city more. There is no documentary-style overhead shot about festivals in my work. The city is never the focus. It is the character that determines the composition. The audience then feels the city behind her through the character. I have a feeling, What we do is documentaries that are becoming more and more fictitious. Looking for something that is real or close to reality, and then fictionalizing it. I think movies are more like fictional documentaries.”

In Honas’s “fictional documentary”, his character is always doing the most daily things in the old town of Madrid. “In Bresson’s works, movies are often related to rituals. In Rossellini, even in Pasolini, Mecas, and in the pantheistic Renoir’s works, there is mysticism. The characters, the space depicted and the city are full of confidence. When I go to shoot, I increasingly let myself be filled with things. I need to believe in daily life more and add a little luck to finally immerse myself in some kind of mystery. In the spirit.”

In recent years, there has been more and more discussion about whether art films still need scripts. Many master-level creators have indicated that their filming does not have scripts. The author and director Hong Sang-soo, whom Horners particularly admires, uses scripts, but always shoots the same day Just write. Regarding this issue, Horners believes: “Many people tend to be obsessed with what they write. These are important, but not so important, and there are other more important things. I always try to convince people to make movies become A living creative process, and the script is only the first part of this process, and then you should get out of it, because even so, it will always exist.”

Throughout the film career of Horners, his role has been growing with his own age. “I see directors I admire, they still continue to shoot young people when they grow older, which makes me a little uneasy. I can’t write about roles that are not my age. I have made youth films, and that is the era I have experienced. , I can still connect with them, but what I am writing is always related to my current age. I like the actors, places, and things in movies that grow old with me.”