While hitchhiking in Eastern Europe, a seventeen-year-old girl gets lost and for the first time has to find her way on her own.
11 min 32 sec
October 18th, 2017
The Netherlands / Poland
When you are hitchhiking, from the moment you enter the car of a stranger, you have decided to share a short moment of your lives together as friends. You sit next to each other in a confined space, in comfortable chairs, looking in the same direction. There is something very personal and intimate about this kind of traveling.
When I started working on this project, I wanted to make a movie that shows what hitchhiking in Europe is really like. I’ve found that a lot of people have an idea of hitchhiking that doesn’t correspond with my own experiences; people seem to think it isn’t safe anymore to place this kind of trust in strangers and that there are too many bad people around these days. But I’ve always experienced that people show a very kind and good side of themselves when put in a position to help a stranger. No matter where you are, because reasonable people are the same everywhere.
I wanted to show this perspective to the viewer and evoke a discussion whether or not it's naive to trust strangers like this, especially for a young girl. And the movie should feel like something that's real, not like movie-reality, but more in the direction of a scripted documentary. A good friend and I discussed this idea and he motivated me to push this to the limit; the movie should be executed partly as a documentary and partly as fiction. This way, the film would have the response and words of actual people, providing the film with the realism I saw fit for the story.
Looking back at this process, I think it was an important moment in the process of finding my directorial voice. The tone and style of the movie are something different from what I used to make, but the end-result motivates me to further explore this approach to filmmaking.
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