Borderline | Four Seasons in a Day

a film by Annabel Verbeke
The crossing by ferry on a lough between Ireland and Northern Ireland, obliges the passengers to reflect on the future form of the frontier, somewhere hidden in the sea.

Each day, the Carlingford ferry brings people over the border between Northern-Ireland and Ireland, in an era the debate on Brexit is predominant. Staying or remaining, both options create the same big question marks on the future. The short journey over the wide sea brings different thoughts and reflections to the surface, while the border is hiding in the sea. The film creates a kaleidoscopic narrative based on how people’s daily lives and thoughts relate to this imaginary line. How visible would the borderline eventually become?

Four Seasons In A Day has echoes of Runar Runarsson’s Echo in the way it weaves little fragments of time and individual circumstances into a moving portrait of a community. This snapshot of a moment is all the more acutely felt in the light of the simmering unrest currently boiling over on the streets of Northern Ireland. - Screen Daily ****

Impressive feature debut.
A reflective and refreshing non-political look at Brexit’s border impact
. - Filmuforia ****

Verbeke is clearly a formal talent.  - In the Seat ***1/2

Un inteligente e íntimo estudio de las consecuencias del Brexit.  - La Estatuilla *****

Avec une vraie vision cinématographique, Annabel Verbeke crée des images iconiques.  - Cinergie

About the director

Annabel Verbeke, born in Ypres, Belgium in 1987, is a documentary filmmaker.
In 2010, Annabel graduated magna cum laude at RITCS Film School in Brussels. Her graduation film "Les enfants de la mer/mère" - "Children of the sea" won 8 international awards and was selected by more than 20 international film festivals. Her next film "We Will Remember Them” was the closing film of Visions Du Réel 2018 and the best watched documentary film on Flanders national broadcasters in the same year.

As a filmmaker, Annabel is looking for beauty in the most modest and common things surrounding us.  She always has been fascinated by subjects that are seemingly common but at the same not always very visible. She likes to unhide and unravel these fascinating stories, bringing both its poetry and absurdity to the surface. This often neglected but obvious beauty is the core of Annabel essayistic and serene filmic approach. Banality is changed into poetry, darkness of life countered with refined humor.

In the past years, Annabel has been working as a freelancer for several broadcasters and production companies, directing commissioned documentary films, series and tv programs.

At the moment Annabel is developing a documentary series in collaboration with both national Belgian broadcasters VRT-Canvas and RTBF, with the support from the Flanders Audiovisual Fund, called "T(w)o Work", about newcomers in Belgium and their long-term struggle to find a proper job in the country they want to call home from now. Annabel will be the leading director, managing and tutoring a group of non-European directors, all graduated from DocNomads, a joint masters program in documentary filmmaking organised by 3 European Universities. 


A film by
Annabel Verbeke

Written by
Annabel Verbeke
Frederik Nicolai

director of photography 
Pieter-Jan Claessens

sound recordist
Marijn Thijs

sound edit
Rune Hansen

original music by
Frédéric Vercheval

assistant director
Ross Mc Clean
Domenico Centrone

production manager
Iva Tkalec
Setareh Samavi

Awards & festivals

Winner International Emerging Filmmaker Award at Hotdocs, 2021

Winner Jean-Loup Passek Award, Melgaço Doc Festival, Portugal, 2022

Winner Award for best film, New York Film Week, USA, 2021

Winner Meestervertellers Award, Amsterdam, 2022

Special mention Saratov Sufferings Film Festival, Russia, 2021

World Premiere Hotdocs international spectrum competition, 2021

Nominated for the Ensor for Best Documentary, 2022

official selections:

Film Fest Ghent
Belgian premiere 2021

New York Film Week
main competition, 2021

Sydney Film Festival
Australian premiere, 2021

Verzio International Film Festival
Hungarian Premiere, 2021

Lemesos Int. Film Festival
Cyprus, 2021

Belfast, Northern-Ireland, 2021

London Migration Festival, closing film
London, UK, 2021

Rhode Island International Film Festival
Providence, USA, 2021

Gangneung International Film Festival
South-Korea, 2021

Saratov Sufferings Film Festival
Russian premiere, 2021

Atlantida Film Festival / Filmin
Spanish premiere 2021

Close Up Edinburgh Film Festival
Edinburgh, 2021

Biarritz, French premiere 2022

Regional competition, Croatia, 2022

Belgian competition, Leuven, 2022

Manlleu Film Festival
Opening Film, Spain, 2022

Melgaço Doc Festival
Portugal, 2022

Broadcasted on VRT-Canvas (Belgium), RTE (Ireland), LRT (Lithuania), ERT (Greece)

Production Details

an Off World production

In co-production with
VRT Canvas

In co-production with
Relation04 Media

In co-production with
Umedia in association with Ufund

With the Support from
Flanders Audiovisual Fund
Brussels Capital Region
The Belgian Federal Government Tax Shelter

With the Support from
Norwegian Film Institute
Croatian Audiovisual Center
Lithuanian Film Center

With the Support from
Filmfond Nord
Nordnorsk Filmsenter
Creative Europe Programme - MEDIA of the European Union