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France, 2005 (MIFF 2006, Documentaries)

Director: Joseph Cesarini, Jimmy Glasberg

“There are lots of theories about how to reduce crime but showing 9 Square Meters for Two to youngsters might be a good place to start.” - Variety

The result of a remarkable experiment, 9 Square Meters for Two was written and performed by actual inmates of Baumettes Prison in Marseille, France. Essentially, these 10 men, who were merely trained in the technical aspects of camerawork and then encouraged to let their creativity run wild, became the actors and directors of their own tumultuous, though enclosed, lives by taking part in this ongoing prison program.

A purpose-built set was erected within the penitentiary's walls to the actual size of a standard cell (nine square meters) so to assist them in differentiating between real and imaginary situations. We never know how they came to be locked behind bars - and they don't necessarily look like criminals - but we are provided with a very clear, and often startlingly, cinematic window into the individual frustrations, loneliness, indifference, confrontations and claustrophobia that cloud their daily existence.

D Jimmy Glasberg, Joseph Cesarini P Dominique Barneaud, Caroline Caccavale WS AGAT Films & Cie L French w/English subtitles
TD 35mm/2005/94mins

Jimmy Glasberg was born in Corsica, France, in 1961. Joseph Cesarini was born in Gard, France, in 1940. 9 Square Meters for Two (2006) is their feature film directing debut.

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