France

Synopsis

God, Abraham, Isaac, a lost shepherdess and a herd of antelopes (in the rile of the Ram) appear in thisancient tale which has been transposed to a new digital world; a world in which no one is innocent andwhere the things which we search for – and eventually find – are destined to be lost again.

Directors Statement

The story of IT WASN’T THE RIGHT MOUNTAIN, MOHAMMAD was born out of two significant events, one is ancient and the other is recent. The ancient one happened approximately 3,800 years ago when God ordered Abraham to sacrifice his son Isaac. It was probably the biggest leaps of faith anyone has ever known. I, however, found the catharsis quite puzzling. Just as Abraham was about to sacrifice his son on the mount of Moriah, he was interrupted by the angel of the Lord, and saw a “ram caught in a thicket by his horns”. Abraham sacrificed the ram instead of his son. Everyone was allegedly happy with this ending, but I wondered - who was this ram? How did he get caught up in that situation? Or, as Paul Celan asked in his poem, “In-to what does he not charge?” And then he added: “The world is gone, I must carry you.” I wanted to tell the story of the last day in the life of that ram. But how...? In my films, I’ve always taken the approach of describing the world as I see it, through my own eyes. Therefore, I decided that the only way to be loyal to a certain truth, without imposing it on anybody, would be to imagine what could have happened to me back then, when God tested everyone’s faith on the mount of Moriah. I already knew how the story is going to end, but how does it start? The recent event, from which my film was developed, occurred while pondering about the biblical story:
My parents, who live by the sea in Israel, went to the beach for their morning run. They came across a plastic water bottle with a rolled letter inside. They opened it carefully and it was a letter written in Arabic, signed by a man named ‘Mohammad son of Sabah’, and addressed to God. Mohammad was thanking God, not asking for anything for himself. The faith and absurdity represented by this little event moved me deeply. I decided to start my journey at sea, and see how it goes from there. I will be the bottle, containing a letter back to Mohammad, and who knows who will find it? Could be God, but could also be a ridiculous hazard. Maybe both. This is more or less how IT WASN’T THE RIGHT MOUNTAIN, MOHAMMAD was born. It is a tale about the absurdity of faith, of the existence, and of nature. But it’s also a tale of beauty and love, and hope. I chose to tell this tale in a synthetic video game universe, since, after all, the 3D is not so far from the Bible. Both can express higher aspirations and give access to a stage of primary perception – of when we first met the world and found our place in it.

Director's Biography

After thousands of years of wandering, two immigrants from France and the USSR settled in the Holy Land.
In 1988 they had Mili Pecherer as a fruit of their love.
Why does one leave his homeland? We don’t know.
Therefore, Mili has taken off, and ever since she’s been strolling the byways, equipped with a small camera.
She documents in a free-flow her meetings with ordinary people and animals, in their everyday life, and transforms it into films.
Mili’s adventures have so far taken place in Israel, Finland, Russia, Spain and France, Supported by various institutions like the Bezalel Academy, VGIK, Lahti university of applied sciences, BilbaoArte and Le Fresnoy -Studio national des arts contemporains.
She currently lives in Marseille, in order not to be too far from the sea.

FILMOGRAPHY:
2019 IT WASN’T THE RIGHT MOUNTAIN, MOHAMMAD, short
2018 HOW GLORIOUS IT IS TO BE A HUMAN BEING, short
2017 LA VIE SANS POMPE, short
2014 YERUHAM OFF SEASON, short
2012 2PAC ITS OLRAIT, short
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Cast & Crew

Directed by: Mili Pecherer

Written by: Mili Pecherer

Produced by: Bertrand Scalabre

Cinematography: Mili Pecherer

Editing: Mili Pecherer, Jean Hubert

Production Design: Mili Pecherer

Costume Design: Ferdous Azizi

Original Score: Eliav Varda

Sound: Arno Ledoux, Mederic Corroyer

Animation: Alexis Hallaert

Nominations and Awards

  • Short Film Candidates 2020