OVAL filmmakers Robert Cibis and Lilian
on the film and its conception.
1988 we were taking a walk through the city park in Nicosia,
Cyprus, when we were suddenly encircled by hundreds of Sri
Lanken women in colorful garments. As we were curious to
know where they had come from all at once, we started up
a conversation with Mali, one of the women. We found out
that they were all housemaids working in Cyprus, and that
employment agents had organized their recruitment in their
own country and placed them into new jobs without a hitch.
At this time a friend of ours was romantically involved
with a headhunter. We were fascinated to learn more about
this profession, which was previously completely unknown
to us. We connected the two spontaneously and thus arose
the concept for „Human Capital: The Business of Work.“
Even the title was obvious to us from the very beginning.
envision the protagonists of the film as representing a
snapshot of society. We want to portray the societal process
at a personal level. Our intent is to sharpen the blurry
motion of the merry-go-round. To experience the laborers’
new beginnings, we jump together onto the rotating carousel
with them. When we jump off, we see how the employment agencies
make it work.
You are what you do. We are asking what
you are, when you no longer do what you did before, and
what you are, when you don’t yet do what you will
do later, and we also ask the question of what you are during
the gray area in between.
On trips I have always been surprised
by the people for whom the journey doesn’t count.
For me it is almost the most important part...In the end,
it is when one lives the most...For these people this time
simply doesn’t exist. For them, that time is a kind
of numb time, and the only time that exists is the stopped
time during which they can say that they are at the place
that they have just arrived at, and from which they will
part; and nothing else exists between the two. I think that
it is exactly this in-between moment which exists.
Jean-Luc Godard, press conference in Avignon