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The teenager artist Ana is raised in Ibiza by her German father Klaus in a naturalist lifestyle in a cave. One day, she meets a woman called Justine that invites Ana to move to Madrid, offering education and economical support, to live in an old house with other artists having classes of Arts and with the only commitment of studying. Ana befriends her mate Linda (Bebe) and falls in love for the problematic Said, having her first sexual experience with him. After a period together, Said leaves Ana, and then she is hypnotized by Anglo, discovering her past lives and deaths. Written by
Claudio Carvalho, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
After the wonderful "Lovers of the Arctic Circle" and his masterpiece "Sex and Lucia" (the last almost seven years ago) my expectations on Julio Medem's follow up movie were very high and for that reason I rushed to see "CAOTIC ANA" at the Toronto Film Festival. To my disappointment, this movie is just as its title CAOTIC. A sad demonstration that some interesting or even original ideas by no means end up as a good movie.
Ana is a young painter living in IBIZA with his widow father. One day she meets Justine (the great Charlotte Rampling) who offers education and economic support to perfect her artistic skills if she moves to Madrid. Ana starts "feeling" the big city and the new life (it is a sensorial feeling; she is be far from shy or at least she has no problems in being nude for art's sake or to take a bath in the ocean or for many other reasons). One of her new "feelings" is Said; a young Arab and fellow student which Ana gets involved and obsessive in love (like Lucia in "Sex"). In short time, Ana starts having strange daydreams and seizures until a professional hypnotist finds out she had lived many previous lives and all of them ending with terrible deaths at a very young age (around 22 years old). This discovery plus something said by Ana (she speaks different languages while hypnotized) causes Said to run away without any explanation. In order find out what happened with Said she accepts being part of a hypnotic treatment, trying to investigate her previous lives (and deaths). The only condition, she does not want to remember anything about the session, unless is related to Said. Many more things occur and for reasons that do not make a lot of sense she ends up in USA where she is submitted to the last "session" to find out the truth. Even when the idea looks interesting; the unrealistic chain of events, many of them too forced, harms the narrative. No character in the movie (which includes very well known European actors like Rampling or Luis Homar) has any deep or definition. They are mostly pieces put there to generate a situation or a dialog; we do not get to properly know Ana since her only motivation seems to be finding Said; and even this mystery (which drives the movie ) is easily predictable. Medem (like Bergman in his own way) has a personal concept about love and human relations and all his movies make reference to the stupid choices and things people do and consequences in everybody's lives. He never really made a lineal or realistic story; just a chain of events aligned to show his theory. This concept worked fine in previous movies; because in some way everything (albeit not always logically) got connected and made sense; which is not the case here. Many ideas seem to be thrown in the mix (not all of them really good or original) but like water and oil did not blend at all. Cohesion is missing in many moments (like the missing reels in GRINDHOUSE). The perfect example is the scene with the USA government functionary; a scene many people will probably enjoy (aside for the disgusting) but has absolutely nothing to do with the rest of the movie. It is really sad because technically the movie is excellent; the paintings and the animations are outstanding, the locations are pure beauty but while Ana had many souls, this movie has none.
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