Pray for Paris Sees the City Through Somber Eyes

Filmmaker Alex Soloviev captures a city speechless, in mourning, and in prayer.

by Sami Emory
Dec 2 2015, 1:30pm

Gif by the author, via 

Pray for Paris, shot by night in the Place de la République after the events of November 13th, captures a city suspended in speechlessness. Devoid of narration, dialogue, or interviews, the short film is a wordless montage of collective mourning in which visuals become even more prominent and defined. Through filmmaker Alex Soloviev’s lens, blues seem to blend to blacks, whites shine starker, and reds glow fiercer. 

And yet, apart from Soloviev's dramatization of color, Pray for Paris is also a film about unfiltered acts and objects of loss: iPhones and children and tears; rain splattered plastic bouquet covers, potted plants; candles, love letters, and farewells. Its a work made for helping the artist cope with overwhelming emotion, rather than asserting any one idea. Writes Soloviev, "Enough words were said. I'm talking through my lens. My feelings are in this short film." Throughout it all, behind the scene and beneath a score of somber piano music, the sounds of the city leak into the shots, reminding us—as the filmmaker adds—that, “Paris is alive.” 

Below, watch Alex Soloviev’s film, Pray for Paris

See more of Alex Soloviev's work on his Vimeo


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short film
pray for paris
Place de la République
Alex Soloviev