The Highest Point
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In Julika Rudelius' The Highest Point, various women - young, old, fat, thin, lesbian, hetero - tell us about their sex lives, against a sober décor. They describe their experiences in great detail; apparently it is exciting to unveil your private life on camera. 'I don't masturbate', an Asian girl with hair down to her hips begins, unable to say the sentence without stammering. She laughs nervously, fumbles with her boots and the hem of her skirt. Her face hardly comes into view. All the more present is her body; it seduces and bends itself into provocative curves, perhaps unconsciously, but perhaps very consciously indeed.
After her, other girls and women follow, some giggling timidly, some totally unashamedly revealing to the camera what position they pr…fer, and what makes them come. The camera still is not focusing on their faces, although, as the film progresses and the revelations become more intense, they do come into view more and more often. Thus, without batting an eyelid a plump woman demonstrates her favourite position. She is recognizable to the whole world. And beneath her black transparent tights she is evidently not wearing any knickers. This heralds in more (tasteful)) nudity.
Rudelius' works often feature a characteristic combination of documentary elements and alienation. She places people in unfamiliar environments, which makes them behave in a manner that is interesting to her. In The Highest Point, which is a reaction to the banal porn with which we are presented on television, in advertising and wherever we look, the women almost clinically tell their stories. Rudelius' camera work is an ingenious ally in this game; by never completely 'unveiling' the women, she enhances the value of the film as a documentary or reality soap. Although Rudelius was not really interested in personal stories or feelings, The Highest Point still turned into an exceptionally personal document. Merel Bem