This is a short excerpt from the beginning of the full documentary...

Director / Producer - gethan&myles |
DOP / Editor - Nick Street

L’Arrêt (‘the pause’, ‘the arrest’) is an experimental documentary about suspense, indecision and the choreography of fear. Shot in the Parc National des Calanques with a group of young adults from the Cité de la Bricarde, a housing project in Marseille’s troubled Quartiers Nord, L’Arrêt explores the uncertainty we all face in the no-man’s-land between child and adult.
L’Arrêt is a film in which five young adults jump from vertiginous limestone cliffs into the Mediterranean. But the spectacle is not the scenery, or the drama of the fall – what it celebrates is the moments before… The mixture of bravado and unease, the switch between the hard stare and the too-relaxed grin, the waves of tension and uncertainty, and the struggle to overcome them that unite their bodies in a strange, beautiful, shared language of fear.
The young people in this film find themselves in a particularly acute situation full of conflicting social pressures and doubt. Isolated both geographically and socially from the metropolis of Marseille, their cité is, paradoxically, a village – a tight-knit community with clearly defined groups and roles. Barely more than children, teenagers leave the local ‘collège’ and are suddenly viewed, by the system at least, as men and women. Their employment prospects are limited: 43% of young men in the quartiers nord are without work and the poor reputation of the area in the media and beyond means that, graduates or not, their postcode often stands between them and a job. If you stay in the cité, your obvious choices are chomeur (unemployed), chouffeur (look-out for the dealers) or – for the girls – mother. If you leave, you’ve walked away from your community – for all its limitations, a place where you are known, supported and defined by more than your address. These young people are caught between the suffocating certainties of the world around them and the paralysing dream of “a better future”: they are on the edge of a void, looking for the courage to throw themselves into it. At the Centre Sociale in La Bricarde, Farines the chief animateur told us that, “ici les jeunes ont du mal a se projetter…” But here at least – slowly, painfully, joyously – they do.
L’Arrêt is the result of a seven month participatory residency in La Bricarde overseen by Les Ateliers de L’EuroMediterrannée and Marseille-2013.

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