Estate, a Reverie
ArCH Film Festival at HCAF
Andrea Luka Zimmerman’s doc takes both a synchronic and diachronic view of the Haggerston Estate, in the East End borough of Hackney, where the director was herself a resident. Shot over seven years from 2008 and leading up to its demoition, it follows several of the estate’s short- and long-term occupants, while also tracing the area’s long, cyclical history of social exclusion and renewal. Built in the 1930s as an ‘improving’ utopian replacement for local slums, the estate was neglected by the council in the 1970s and was slated to be razed and redeveloped in the 1990s.
Like Zimmerman’s local art project I Am Here (which the film includes), Estate, A Reverie serves as a graffiti-like reminder of the individuals and personal histories, so easily overlooked, that are as important as the buildings that house them in making up a community. Haggerston’s last bricks came down in 2014, which is where Zimmerman’s documentary ends, on a note of both lament for a literally collapsed society and hope for a new beginning (Anton Bitel, British Film Institute).
Multilayered and profound, Andrea Zimmerman’s film masterfully immerses us in a dreamlike lost-world of misfits, outcasts and survivors whom she films with love and aching tenderness.
– Joshua Oppenheimer, Director of The Act of Killing
Directed by Andrea Luka Zimmerman
Written by Gareth Evans, David Roberts, Adam Rosenthal
Cinematography by Taina Galis, Lasse Johansson, Andrea Luka Zimmerman
Editing by Ariadna Fatjó-Vilas
Music by Olivia Chaney, David Cunningham