09 20 Oct '24
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Naomi Uman

three sparks

Edition 2023
95' - 2023 - Documentary - Dialogue: Albanian, English
Director: Naomi Uman Composer: Naomi Uman
Indebted to ethnographic cinema, Naomi Umans three sparks observes life in Albania, from its traditional rules of behaviour and idiosyncratic cultural specificities to the individuals who maintain or challenge them.
After her self-imposed immigration from the US to Ukraine, Naomi Uman now travels to Albania for her new film. Starting from a series of quotations from the Kanun, the traditional rules of behaviour that still govern social life in rural areas, the triptych explores the mountain village of Rabdisht. With a particular focus on the position of women, and her own position as a foreigner, Uman observes Albanian society. The result is crafty, roguish and sincere. three sparks is closely connected with ethnographic cinema, but the experimental filmmaker does her own thing, not shying away from giving an insight into her own making process. Her lens, sometimes analogue then digital, focuses on village life from all angles. Quite literally so: when Uman leaves filming to a group of curious children, the camera even ends up on the ground.

"Naomi Uman's new feature is a three-part documentary portrait of life in the town of Rabdisht, Albania. Taking certain cues from experimental ethnographers such as Trinh T. Minh-ha and Jonas Mekas, Uman works to establish a coherent sense of place and culture, and then begins to break down those apparent certainties." - In Review Online

Image gallery

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Naomi Uman


Naomi Uman


Naomi Uman

Director of Photography

Naomi Uman


Naomi Uman


Naomi Uman

Production studios

Kino Rebelde


Kino Rebelde

More information


Albanian, English

Countries of production

Mexico, Albania




Naomi Uman
Removed (short, 1999), Leche (short, 1999), Hand Eye Coordination (short, 2002), Mala Leche (2003), Ukrainian Time Machine (2008), Unnamed Film (2008), Tinwoodsman's Home Movie #2 (short, 2008), On This Day (short, 2009), Three Sparks (2023)

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