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Karen Reis

Artist: Karen Reis

Work: Love Cuts

Four young people living in Auckland, New Zealand and their thoughts and questions about what it means to be in love today.

The speculative nature of Love Cuts investigates what love is now, within the perspective of four young people living in Auckland, New Zealand. Their revealing thoughts are presented through intimate forms of poetry and an unaltered realism that infuses their never ending questions and anxieties about what is love today.

This is my first film and it is centered on a set of personal questions that investigate the relevance of Love. I wanted to explore how people perceive and express their feelings within a context of isolation. These issues are related to our contemporary connectivity and its effects on Love.

Their lives are presented through an unaltered realism. The subjects express themselves through train of thought and poetry, which investigates their own conceptions of love.

These thoughts and feelings are juxtaposed to the expectations of society. The film questions how love is supposed to look and feel.

Love Cuts was shot in the period of a month with an intimate crew (director and cinematographer), which made it possible to capture honest moments. This short documentary aims to probe the subject of Love in a simplistic way. Its realist aesthetic is a poetic embrace of the mundane.

Karen Reis is a filmmaker and photographer born in São Paulo, Brazil. She moved to New Zealand in 2009 where she studied Fine Arts at Elam School of Fine Arts, the University of Auckland after studying photography in Brazil. She has been working in the film industry for the past 10 years.

Love Cuts is her first film, shot entirely with a small crew of 2 people in the period of a month. She is currently based in Auckland, New Zealand.

Director’s Statement

“My art and filmmaking practice are in the terrains of everyday stories and investigations on human emotions, connection and the transcendental.

“I am driven to tell stories in a true-to-life way. I am attracted to the aesthetics of the everyday within the documental aesthetics. Natural soundtrack and long takes act as meticulous representation of the dull, a monotone choice. There’s real beauty in a bench full of dishes and unmade bed, I like the idea of realism in film where characters and locations are shown as they are, with little to no mediation of director or set designer, emphasizing the surface of reality. I also like the idea of blurring the concept of documental and fiction, using non-linear editing to tell real stories in a way that is traditionally seen in fiction and literature.”