Anja Kirschner’s “Moderation”
A horror film free from horror

Moderation | © Pinelopi Gerasimou

Anja Kirschner’s “Moderation” is a study in film of how a horror film comes about – inspired by Andrzej Żulawski’s “Possession”.

Moderation charts the pre-production process of a horror film that is to be set in Greece, Egypt and Italy. As a result, the director (played by Maya Lubinsky) has to repeatedly discuss the horror film genre in amusing analyses via Skype with the Egyptian female lead (Aida El Kashef), encourage the Greek actress (Michele Valley) and the Italian actor (Giovanni Lombardo Radice) to make concessions and  negotiate with the fussy American producer (Stavroula Siamou). Who is to play whom when and why is continuously called into question and reinterpreted.


This deconstruction of the film production process is supplemented by elements of the absurd such as the excerpt from an Egyptian television report in which a ten-year-old analyses his country’s political instability with almost inconceivable maturity. Ultimately the viewer is spared the business of actually watching a horror film, as this is not Kirschner’s objective: instead, she wants to discover how horror transforms reality by seeping through a traumatic experience in the past and attempting to take hold in the present day.

Born in Germany, Anja Kirschner studied in Great Britain. Her work (video art and short films) is shown at exhibitions and festivals. She currently lives in Athens. Moderation is a Greek-Egyptian-Italian-British co-production.