A film by Andrea Luka Zimmerman, Adrian Jackson
2019, 87 minutes
No. 256

They say freedom's only possible when there's nothing left to lose. But what, in the end, is the real cost of living?

In a city framed by capital and loss, ten unruly Londoners navigate their wild and wayward way, travelling on their own terms towards a co-existence far stronger than 'community'. On reclaimed land they find themselves on the right side of history, caught between two train tracks, the present tense and future hopes. They question who has stolen what from whom, and how things might be fixed, in an often contradictory rite of passage. Finding solidarity in resistance, they demand the right to go on.

An uncommon story told on common ground, Here for Life dances with a spirited grace and urgency, hovering between fiction and fact, attention and act. Sometimes we simply need to hear our stories told by someone else...

Winner, Special Mention, Locarno Film Festival


“A film of great compassion and political and aesthetic ambition, in which the idea of a collective is prioritised for a change, but without sacrificing or downplaying the individual voices and idiosyncrasies that it comprises. Beautifully exuberant and optimistic.” – Sight & Sound

"An extraordinary exploration of London life. Zimmerman’s past work has cast a spotlight on society’s marginalised. With Here for Life, she and Jackson, the artistic director of Cardboard Citizens, have crafted something special about Londoners and their relationships with drugs, violence and homelessness against the backdrop of a gentrifying city. It’s not to be missed." – Time Out 

"Here for Life confronts the nuances of performance and trauma, turning individual memory into a shared experience. In so many ways, the film becomes a mosaic of their experiences, producing the kind of raw, frayed vulnerability one might associate with the cinema of Claire Denis." – Little White Lies

"A beautiful piece of filmmaking that never romanticises its subjects. Zimmerman and Jackson’s fantastical and at times stagey methodology accesses something deep and complex, suggesting the potential of collaborative acts of creation as part of an unfolding process."  Art Monthly