Phases of Matter
Ernst Karel did sound design and the re-recording mix for Phases of Matter and is teaching reality-based audio in UC Berkeley’s Department of Film & Media this semester.
The creator of the acclaimed experimental virtual reality works Floodplain and September 1955, and a graduate of Harvard’s powerhouse Sensory Ethnography Lab (Sweetgrass; Leviathan; Lampedusa), Deniz Tortum makes his feature debut with this immersive tour of the daily scenes and routines of an Istanbul hospital. Unlike the overarching institutional overviews of filmmakers like Frederick Wiseman, Phases of Matter focuses on the everyday sights—and, especially, sounds—of life on the medical frontlines, from bedside consultations to graphic surgeries, lunch breaks to impromptu poetry readings. “At times poetic and at times terrifying, this is a testimony of life-and-death that only cinema can make possible” (Istanbul Modern).