Filmmaker’s Name and Title: Sabina Vajrača, Writer/Director
Film Name: Negative Feedback Loop
Length of film: 5min 30sec
Genre (horror, comedy, drama, etc.): Drama, Experimental
In 50 words or less, what’s this film about?:
An allegory about our tendency to get stuck in repetitive patterns of thoughts, and what it takes to break them, explored in a story of Liv, a young woman saddled with a Sisyphus task of cleaning a bathtub that keeps getting dirty over and over again.
What inspired you to make this film?
Six years ago I started studying Stoic and Vedanta philosophy through The School of Practical Philosophy in NYC. The ideas they introduced me to completely shifted my way of thinking, and, by default, changed my life. In one of the lectures my teacher shared a metaphor that was the main inspiration for this film:
Say you have 3 lightbulbs: 1 that is completely covered with years of dirt and grime and dust. No one has cleaned it in decades.
1 that is also dirty but not as much. Perhaps a handful of years of neglect.
And 1 that is completely clean.
When you turn on the switch, all 3 of them will get the same amount of energy, and therefore have the same amount of light in them. But it is only the clean one that shines fully.
If we think of ourselves as the bulbs, and the grime on them as all the thoughts and beliefs and actions we accumulated over our lifetime, then our way to shine is not to change bulbs - we can’t - but instead to polish up the one we’re in, to eliminate those thoughts and beliefs that hold us in the dark. This is by no means easy, nor does it automatically get better the moment we start. It’s a very hard task, and one in which will go through many setbacks. Some of those beliefs are so ingrained, you can’t imagine they were ever not there. Until one moment you get through, and suddenly it all makes sense. As is the case with our heroine in this film.
Name your Top 3 Films of All Time:
Hard one to ask of any filmmaker - so many to choose!! But the three films that deeply moved me and resonated with me years later would be:
Wong Kar-Wai’s “In the Mood for Love”
Darren Aronofsky’s “The Fountain”
Terence Malick’s “The Thin Red Line”
What’s your connection to Mississippi?
My feature documentary “Back to Bosnia” played at your festival in 2006, and won the Director’s Choice award.