Original title Ich glaubte Gefangene zu sehen Director, scriptwriter Harun Farocki Researcher, cinematographer Cathy Lee Crane Editor Max Reimann Sound Luis Van Rook Production Harun Farocki Filmproduktion, Berlin, Generali Foundation, Vienna with support from ZDF/3sat, Mainz Inge Classen, Movimento, Paris Christian Baute Format BetaSp (double projection), col. 23 min. (Loop), Germany 2000 First screening International Festival Locarno, 6.08. 2000 Note Single-channel-version available

I Thought I was seeing Convicts

Images from the maximum-security prison in Corcoran, California. The surveillance camera shows a pie-shaped segment: a concrete-paved yard where the prisoners, dressed in shorts and mostly shirtless, are allowed to spend a half an hour a day. A convict attacks another, upon which those uninvolved lay themselves flat on the ground, their arms over their heads. They know what comes now: the guard will call out a warning and the fire rubber bullets. If the convicts do not stop fighting now, the guard will shoot for real. The pictures are silent, the trail of gun smoke drifts across the picture. The camera and the gun are right next to each other. The field of vision and the gun viewfinder fall together...

(Harun Farocki)