Thursday, May 3, 2012

Hot Docs 2012 - Dreams of a Life

Dreams of a Life by Carol Morley, 2012

The skeleton of a woman is found in a London apartment, three years after she had died. Even though the television was still on, no one came looking. Dreams of a Life is a film looking for answers to this mystery. How did something as sad as this happen? Through testimony from her various acquaintances, we hear stories and speculations, with the unfortunate realization that there are no answers. As heartbreaking as the central story is, Morley's documentary is a slog to sit through. I saw various members of the audience rubbing their eyes, checking their watches and even walking out during the film. Dreams of a Life lacks a real dramatic hook, and a visual timeline organizing different events in her life is confusing and poorly realized. Various reenactments and artistic dramatizations are peppered around the interviews, but watching the actress sing to herself, look depressed and watch said interviews on a tv in her apartment on what is supposed to be the last day of her life, make for an absolute bore. Definitely a disappointment.

2 out of 5

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