monochrom has occupied itself with the construction, analysis and reflection of alternative worlds and modes of writing history for several years. monochrom projects treat this topic partly as a contention of concepts from popular culture, science and philosophy (see parallel world systems, alternative language systems), partly as a direct link to the science fiction and fantasy fan culture.
The movie “Sierra Zulu” aims to use stylistic elements of the dark comedy or the farce to deal with the fundamental questions of national supremacy, international conflict solving strategies, national and international legislation, the power of the media and the diplomatic incapacity of international organizations. The movie wants to explore the perspectives of people who live more or less on the fringes of what we would call “history” or “the world”. This fringe area – surrounded by Austrian sovereign territory – is where we find the microstate Soviet Unterzoegersdorf, the almost forgotten ‘last autonomous republic of the Soviet Union’ which has fallen victim to its geo-political, historical, cultural, and economical insignificance. This village is the last state to represent the ideas which have been eradicated from the face of the earth with Soviet-Communism.
“Sierra Zulu” is about implanting false memories into the political and cultural memory of Europe, and about simulating the effects of this partial and local rewriting of history – namely the initiation of an entire network of events, caused by this transposition. Or to put it differently: how would real life react to Soviet Unterzoegersdorf?
The project not only wants to (at least symbolically) oppose the final victory of capitalism since 1989 with a certain form of nonconformity (perhaps similar to that Gallic village in which Asterix and Obelix live, but without any magic potion that cancels out the superiority of the Roman opponents). As the French comic series Asterix represents the triumphant, unreflecting anti-Americanism of the 1960s and 1970s (or at least was a good symbol from the perspective of the anti-Americanists), Soviet Unterzoegersdorf is rather a place where the “Archaeologie der Hoffnungen” (Archeology of hopes) can take place, “die mit den unerloesten Opfern der Herrschaft begraben wurden, um sie wach zu halten, sichtbar zu machen, hoerbar zu machen” (“that was buried with the victims of oppression, devoid of deliverance, in order to keep it awake, make it visible, make it audible”) as meant by Walter Benjamin.
Communism is not an opinion, it is a promise!
[More info can be found in an interview with director Johannes Grenzfurthner by Dan Taylor of Futurezone or on our Kickstarter page.]