Too Early/Too Late
is a diptych shot in France and Egypt concerning the relation between history, class struggle and landscape.
As Huillet wrote, ‘This is not “fiction”, but what is called “documentary”, even if this way of documenting is, I believe, new (though it has precedents: for example, La Sortie de l’usine Lumière) – no “restrictive” narration, no actors. What is recounted: struggles, revolts, defeats, delays and anticipations, statistics; what is represented: history, topography, geography, geology, light, lights, wind and clouds, land (transformed and worked by men), traces – erased or still visible – and sky (lots of sky)’. In the first part of the film, Huillet reads excerpts from a letter written by Friedrich Engels about the impoverishment of the French peasants on the eve of the Revolution of 1789. In the second part, shot in the Egyptian landscape, the writer Bahgat Elnadi reads from his book on the history of anti-colonial resistance and class struggle in Egypt, which he co-authored with Adel Rifaat under the pseudonym of Mahmoud Hussein.
The screening will be introduced by Anjalika Sagar.
With the kind support of the German Department, King's College London.
Too Early/Too Late,
Dirs: Danièle Huillet and Jean-Marie Straub, France/Egypt, 1981, 16mm/DCP, colour, 100 mins., English version.
Presented as part of The Films of Jean-Marie Straub and Danièle Huillet