THE EYES OF SUMMER
Sri Lanka / United States, 2020, 15′
In a small and remote hamlet, a young girl develops a curious friendship with a spirit who lives in an abandoned house. This film was shot in my mother’s village in Southern Sri Lanka—shortly after the civil war in 2010. Collaboratively developed with members of my family there, a narrative was improvised around an investigation into my mother’s interactions with spirits in the community during her childhood. Landing somewhere between horror fiction and “spectral” ethnography, the film describes a population reeling from devastations of the past, where distinctions between the living and the dead are thinning.
is a filmmaker born and raised in Sri Lanka. Rajee received his BFA from UCSD and his MFA from CalArts. He is currently working on his debut feature, Your Touch Makes Others Invisible, inspired by his childhood experiences during the Sri Lankan civil war—the project received a Sundance Documentary Fund grant and was invited to Berlinale Talents’ Doc Station as well as True/False Film Festival’s inaugural PRISM program. Rajee’s work has been exhibited at the Tiger Short Competition at the International Film Festival Rotterdam, New Directors/New Films by Film Society of Lincoln Center & MoMA, BFI London Film Festival, FIDMarseille, Internationale Kurzfilmtage Oberhausen, Slamdance Film Festival, Split Film Festival, REDCAT, Message to Man, Havana Film Festival, Media City Film Festival, Berwick Film & Media Arts Festival, Onion City Experimental Film and Video.