RIFF Movies Archive

Bless the chores !

France, 2011, vide HD 1440 x 1080 - Color - 64

Emmanuel Presselin & Aline Deforge

Emmanuel Presselin

Emmanuel Presselin

self produced


Alamosa, Colorado – A small town lost in the midst of a vast agricultural plateau in the Southern Rocky Mountains. Alamosa is home to the La Puente shelter that strives to address the needs of homeless people in this rural area. For a few days or weeks, it provides them bedding, food and a chance to get back on their feet.

The shelter operates with no public money or grants. Instead, it relies on private donations and a handful of volunteers. Most of them college graduates, they have made the choice of devoting a full year of their lives to the service of the homeless. They are in charge of checking in new guests, cooking and serving meals, assigning chores, enforcing rules and giving assistance. A significant workload and heavy responsibilities for these young adults with hardly any training in social work.

For three months, the French filmmakers immersed themselves in the life of the shelter, documenting the encounter between these two worlds. They became part of the volunteer team, taking their turns at service and chores.

Born in 1971, Emmanuel Presselin worked as a free-lance editor for the French TV network. His work comprised musical magazines, documentaries and news. However, his experience with the TV industry was shortened by his desire to focus on more personal projects that encompass video, music, live performance and traveling.

Born in 1972, Aline Deforge graduated as a translator and musician. She started working in the audiovisual and artistic fields. The documentary film projects conducted with her companion give her a chance to share her passions and to combine her many talents.

For this nomadic couple, the purpose of traveling is not just to see the rest of the world, but to immerse themselves in a different environment. Filmmaking is first and foremost a living experience that takes place on the long run. Wherever possible, they look for job opportunities and settle down for a while, relying on their ability to soak up languages and connect with people. Slowly, patiently, they collect images, words, impressions and stories. They take time to build candid relationships with people, free from bias though with a solid knowledge of cultures past and present. A human-centered, sensitive approach that is conveyed through their films and makes you want to hit the road again...




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