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…When You Look Away



(Denmark, 2017)






“How to approach something we can’t understand? Phie Ambo’s …When You Look Away tries to do just that. It is a cinematic study of awareness beyond our physical bodies. Ambo begins an exploration, deciding to pick the people for the film through coincidental connections. The method works well, and we meet the most interesting persons, from quantum physicists to psychics and futuristic businessmen. Each encounter brings a new point of view to approaching awareness.

The film is born interactively with the viewer. It challenges us to think. As both the Earth and us people are mainly made of water, it is an important element in the film. The dreamlike water imagery and soft soundscape set the pace, allowing for the viewer some needed pauses amid the elaborate contemplation.

…When You Look Away is a meditative experience. In the age of information overload, it feels refreshing to return to the big questions. The film invites us to marvel at the world like children, as children know how to ask the right questions. We might not get the answer to the essence of awareness, but we will get a reminder of how important it is to ask.”

- Carmen Baltzar (Translation: Liina Härkönen)


Experiencing this documentary film felt a little strange at times, but I found it to be an interesting experience overall. The approach to structuring the process of creating the film is intriguing, and some of the subject matter will definitely be something to sit on for a while…

One of the most fascinating moments for me is the speculation around water as the interface between subatomic reality and physical reality.