Julia Langhof is a German filmmaker, who brought her first feature to Hungary’s 25th Titanic Film Festival. She has been around all over Europe to promote the film, LOMO-The Language of Many Others, which deals with our society, family relations, but mainly, our relationship with today’s technology, teens and parents alike. It explores the deep ends of the dark web, our morals, and the way we actually disconnect in order to connect on social media, all while exploring first love.
I was really happy to interview her, she was so awesome and genuine! We talked about filmmaking, her influences, her goals, and a lot more!
EJ: Are you excited to be in Budapest?
JL: Yes, very. I’ve never been, but I’ve heard a lot of really really nice things about Budapest, so I was very excited to come! And I wish to stay longer because of it.
EJ: How long have you worked on this film?
JL: Well, I initially started thinking about it in 2009. I did a lot of things in between, but I would say I was working on it nonstop for like, four years.
EJ: That’s really impressive!
JL: Yeah, but it was my first feature film, and there were a lot of things I just didn’t know, that’s why things just take a little bit longer.
EJ: As a woman director, do you feel like you had to fight harder for your place in this industry than your male counterparts?
JL: No, I didn’t. But as far as I know, the real problem starts with your second feature, and the third feature. Because in the beginning, everyone is curious about you, and gives you a chance, and then, if you make a mistake, if you want money again and people to invest in you, and trust you again, it becomes more difficult. So maybe if we talk in two years, I can tell you more.
EJ: But it’s really good that they give you a chance!
JL: Yeah, in fact you know, I mean of course I felt like I was one of the few, you know, but I also thought it was great, in a way, and I took it as my advantage, because it’s a great thing actually, in the beginning. Of course, then later on you question it, and think differently about it, but I never felt disadvantaged because of it. Like I said, really, the big problem for me, is that they’ll work out for me or they won’t.
EJ: What can we expect from your next project, ‘Bonnie’s Ranch’?
JL: I can’t really say so much about it yet, because we are in the middle of it.. rather in the beginning. But it will take place in a forensic psychiatry. And it deals with open and closed society.
EJ: I wanted to ask you; what advice would you give to aspiring female filmmakers?
JL: I always felt like, that once you know the story you want to tell, and you feel really passionate about it, and you really actually get it to a point where you actually feel like you should be talking about it, then people are genuinely interested in it, you know? But you should really work on something that you really feel strongly about. Because if you don’t, then why would anyone else? Especially, if you start realising it, and a lot of money goes into it, and a lot of time, and a lot of people.. You just need to make sure that a lot of hard work goes into it.
EJ: Do you have a role model, and if so, who?
I like directors that are trying to reinvent themselves every time they make a new film, because they fall in love with a topic, and then they make a film about that, and then they try to find out how to tell the story. That’s something, I would like to achieve. It’s not so much the films individually that I think are so great, I think that it’s great that they always brave enough to step out of their comfort zone, because then they achieve something that is great, and risk everything again to do something completely new.
EJ: Who’s your favourite director?
JL: There’s a lot of things I admire about a lot of people, but it’s not..
EJ: There’s not one particular person.
JL: No, because it’s so personal in a way, and I can never be them, because they are them. I can admire them for what they’ve done. And then of course I can say, I think Kubrick (The Shining, Clockwork Orange, 2001:A Space Odyssey), but everyone says that! But also, for the same reason.. None of the films he made are the same. He reinvented himself all the time. That’s something I really admire.
But I mean, he was also able to take the time he needed, you know? And that’s sommething that’s really dying. Now we’re producing films just to produce them, and you already know when you have to be finished with the film, and that’s just not how it works, you know? I mean, you have a vision, and then you work for the vision, and then you figure out what has worked and what hasn’t, then you work on it again, and then you maybe, finally come to the finished product.
Also, with editing, you shoot the film and then you edit, and then it’s impossible to finish a film in three months, or five months, you know? And editing is such a complicated process. And that’s something you see all the time, you can see it was made really well, but it’s been put out way too early, because they didn’t have time. They probably made the money, but they didn’t have the time.
EJ: So they rushed it.
EJ: Those were all my questions, so thank you so much. It was a very big pleasure, really.
JL: You’re welcome!
by Eszter Jászfalvi
Eszter Jászfalvi is a femme from Budapest, Hungary, who’s a self-proclaimed perfectionist, a budding actress, a bibliophile and a beginner cook. Her favourite films include The Virgin Suicides, Marie Antoinette, Psycho, Donnie Darko, The Imitation Game and Brokeback Mountain. She’ll watch anything that Tim Burton and Wes Anderson makes, and whatever Dane Dehaan and Mia Wasikowska acts in. She’s also a serious binge watcher of all the good shows, such as Mr. Robot, Gossip Girl, American Horror Story, Bates Motel, Reign, also Black-ish. You can find her on Instagram @esztisworld, on Tumblr at esztiiscreatingherself.tumblr.com, , on letterboxd here and Twitter here