Nothing to Be Afraid of

  • 69'
  • France
  • 2019

Sparse in dialogue, this immersive documentary highlights the stunning devotion of a group of women who work as mine-clearers. They are the vulnerable archaeologists of a particular chapter in Armenian history when 30 years ago, after the collapse of the Soviet Union, the enclave of Nagono-Karabakh tried to separate from Azerbadjan and reunite with the Republic of Armenia. Metre by metre they are clearing the 'Lachin Corridor', a former combat zone where thousands of mines were planted.

Director Khnkanosian wisely avoids the trap of turning the film into a partisan pamphlet of any kind. Instead, she focuses entirely on the physical routine and solemn solidarity among the women, and their impressive inner strength. The ironic title of the film betrays the playful humour that resurfaces each time they prepare dinner together, having survived another working day. A delicate depiction of humanity, patiently at work to ward off fear.

Director
Silva Khnkanosian
Countries of production
France, Armenia
Production Year
2019
Festival Edition
IFFR 2020
Length
69'
Medium
DCP
Language
Armenian
Producer
Stephane Jourdain
Production Company
La Huit
Sales
La Huit
Cinematography
Vahagn Ter-Habobyan
Editor
Justine Hiriart
Sound Design
Jean-Nicolas Rocchesani