Frank, a man of action who worked his way up all by himself, dedicates his life to work. No matter the place or the circumstances, be it day or night, he's on the phone, handling the cargo ... See full summary »
Kafia is 17 years old. Two years ago, she fled to Europe, Hungary on her own, escaping from a child marriage in Somalia. She has been living in a state children's home in Budapest ever ... See full summary »
In the months following the terrorist attacks in Paris, the youth has taken the night. A community has risen, that looks for belonging in a world they don't understand and seek to change ... See full summary »
Five years ago Kisilu, a Kenyan farmer, started to use his camera to capture the life of his family, his village and the damages of climate change. When a violent storm throws him and a ... See full summary »
"I do not care if we go down in history as barbarians." These words, spoken in the Council of Ministers of the summer of 1941, started the ethnic cleansing on the Eastern Front. The film attempts to comment on this statement.
In a yurt on the snow-covered fields of the North, Nanook and Sedna live following the traditions of their ancestors. Alone in the wilderness, they look like the last people on Earth. ... See full summary »
Coco has no idea what to do with her life until she discovers her mother is terminally ill. She wholeheartedly embraces this new purpose in life and moves in with her mother to take care of her, ignoring their distant relationship, as well as her mother's desire to die alone.
Stefan de Walle,
Talal Derki returns to his homeland where he gains the trust of a radical Islamist family, sharing their daily life for over two years. His camera is providing an extremely rare insight ... See full summary »
An intimate portrait of painter and filmmaker Peter Greenaway, directed by his wife Saskia Boddeke. Together with his daughter Pip, Greenaway formulates an alphabet that represents his personality and thoughts about art and life.
I watch a lot of documentaries. I love them. Among those I really enjoy personal experiences, personal quests, which, though specific, allow one to better understand the world of others, one step after another. It makes us more understanding, tolerant, compassionate. This documentary is such a personal quest, I should have liked it but I did not.
First I think, as the title of this review suggests, that this film is before anything else an ego-trip project. In personal-quest documentaries, one usually asks a lot of questions to others, one goes into the world to find meaning. The filmmaker here appears in almost all the shots, and you can clearly see that she is acting (although unconsciously, I'm sure) to appear at her best. She's acting curious, thrilled, happy, serious, moved, and so on. Not to mention the omnipresent "ain't I cute?" feeling. A documentary director should focus on the topic of the film, not on herself/himself. Except for a few characters, in particular her father and the driving teacher, all individuals are too aware of the camera to have any journalistic significance. Her mother is particularly helpless in the movie, especially when she argues for five minutes that she may not be in the movie at all because it's too private, yet you can clearly see that it's her own ego trip too and she dies to be in it, be it with a little drama at the end. The only person who could have been really helpful and meaningful, her father, quickly stepped out of the movie as he understood that his daughter did not have the right approach. I disagree with his idea that these things should be forgotten (though I'd say the same thing if I were him), but he's certainly right when he says that his daughter is not doing anything worthwhile, that she's merely jumping up and down.
Second, there is absolutely no depth in the analysis on the chosen topic. We chronologically go through random events with little historic substance. We all know that citizens were under surveillance in former communist countries. Did we learn anything more here? Nope. All we get are vague impressions about vague documents, as if learning that you were under surveillance is worth one hour and half of an audience.
The underlying problem is that the filmmaker is too young and too much of a dilettante to make a movie on such a difficult topic. She admits herself that she's 30 and she had never asked herself "that" question. What I learned once more in this movie is that one should not do something they don't understand, especially when people who understand better tell you not to do it. This young woman comes out as a stubborn brat who shoots herself in the foot and is proud to show it to the world. If you are of a millennial and find self-centered watch-me-brush-my-teeth youtube videos informative, you might enjoy this movie. Personally I found it disturbing by its vacuity and I would be surprised if this young woman won't be ashamed of it in a few years. I am sure she's a smart lady who just didn't realize what she was doing at that time in her life.
An elephant giving birth to a mouse.
I am sorry I am so harsh but I find it very distressing that this kind of film could become the new norm. I have seen a few of them already.
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