Take What You Can Carry

A character study as well as a meditation on communication, creativity, and physical space, Take What You Can Carry is a picture of a young woman seen through the interiors she occupies and the company she keeps. A North American living abroad, Lilly aspires to shape an intimate and private place of her own while connecting to the world around her. When she receives a letter from home, it provides the conduit she needs to fuse her transient self with the person she’s always known herself to be.


Director and Writer

Matt Porterfield


Amanda Larson


Jenny Lou Ziegel

Sound Design

Gene Park
Danny Meltzer


Zsuzsanna Kiràly
Matt Porterfield

Technical information

USA, Germany 2015
DCP · 1 : 1.85 · 5.1 Mix ·


Hannah Gross
Jean-Christophe Folly
Angela Schanelec
Gob Squad – Sebastian Bark, Mat Hand, Tina Pfurr, Sharon Smith, Laura Tonke, Bastian Trost, Simon Will


Berlinale – Shorts Competition
Art of the Real at Lincoln Center
Maryland International Film Festival
Melbourne International Film Festival
Berlinale Shorts Go Abroad – Asia and India Tour
La Roche-sur-Yon International Film Festival
2MORROW Zavtra International Film Festival
AFI Fest
Kurzfilmfestival Köln
Diálogo de Cinema International Film Festival
Berlin Art Film Festival


Arsenal, Institut für Film und Videokunst
Stadtkino Verleih
Grasshopper Film

Bio/Filmo Matt Porterfield

Matt Porterfield has written and directed three feature films, Hamilton (2006), Putty Hill (2011) and I Used To Be Darker (2013), all produced in Baltimore, Maryland, where he was born and raised. His work is in the permanent collection of the Museum of Modern Art and the Harvard Film Archive and has screened at the Whitney Biennial, Walker Arts Center, Centre Pompidou, and film festivals such as Sundance, SXSW, and the Berlinale (Forum, 2010 & 2013). Matt taught film theory and production at Johns Hopkins University and Maryland Institute College of Art until 2021.

  • Cuatro Paredes, short film (2021)
  • Sollers Point, feature film (2017)
  • Take What You Can Carry, short film (2015)
  • I Used To Be Darker, feature film (2014)
  • Days Are Golden Afterparty, short film (2011)
  • Putty Hill, feature film (2011)
  • Hamilton, feature film (2006)