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Carmen is 16. She lives with her mother and brother on the edge of Berlin. Her father, a Puerto Rican soldier, abandoned the family, and all that’s left to remind them of him is a handful of exotic postcards and his record collection of Caribbean and Hawaiian music. Carmen talks thoughtfully about her daily life and her dreams. Replete in lavish make-up and flamboyant robes, she acts out her fantasies in front of the camera. Inspired by the camp aesthetics of American underground films, Elfi Mikesch’s documentary celebrates, without fear of pathos or bombast, a teenager’s “small escape” from the restrictions and routines of everyday life.
Elfi Mikesch was born in Judenburg, Austria, in 1940. After training as a photographer she moved to Berlin in 1964. She works as a photographer and director of photography, and since 1976 has been making her own feature and documentary films. As director of photography she has worked with renowned directors such as Werner Schroeter, Rosa von Praunheim, Monika Treut and Harald Bergmann. She has been a member of the Berlin Academy of Arts in the film and media art section since 1991.
I Often Think of Hawaii (1978), Execution: A Story of Mary (1978), Was soll'n wir den machen ohne den Tod (1980), Macumba (1982), Die blaue Distanz (1984), Das Frühstück der Hyäne (1984), Verführung: die grausame Frau (1984), Habibi oder die Ehre der Hunde (1987), Gefährliche Orte (Tetralogie) (1994-1995), Verrückt bleiben, Verliebt bleiben (1997)