My Name Is Salt

(Numele meu este SARE)
Switzerland / India, 2013, 92 min
Directed by
Farida Pacha
India / salt / traditions

International Documentary Festival Amsterdam (IDFA), The Netherlands, 2013 – Award for Best First Appearance

 Hong Kong International Film Festival, 2014 – Firebird Award

Documenta Madrid, 2014 – Official Selection 

DOK.fest, International Documentary Film Festival, Munich, 2014 – Official Selection

It is the simplest possible story spread out over an endless eight months. The simplest possible actions set in an unchanging landscape. And yet everything hinges on these actions, on this landscape. At every stage of the salt making process, the family must work with precision and a close attention to details. Through the eight months, Sanabhai’s family will have to deal with many small crises: the pump stops working, the level of the ground water decreases, there are unseasonal rains or sandstorms.

The rewards are few, but still they take pride in making the best and whitest salt in the world. In Sanabhai’s story, there appears a mirage-like reflection of the ancient tale of Sisyphus. By reducing life to its most basic equation: that work is our condition, and not to work is to be outside life itself. In the end, Sanabhai’s story is meaningful not just because it tells us something about the world we live in, but because it tells us something about our own selves.