Thursday, February 23, 2012

A little perfection, or: Pina.

One of the loveliest ladies in the land, Katie, and I went to see Pina last night at the Violet Crown. First of all, if you haven't been to the Violet Crown, get yourself over there! Reserved seating, reasonably priced drinks and snacks, small theaters with great acoustics and no bad seats, and validated parking! Yes, please.

But more importantly, go see Pina. There is so much I want to say about this movie, but I'll be as succinct as I can. Wim Wenders directed the film as a tribute to renowned choreographer Pina Bausch who died in 2009 and whose works are simply stunning. The film showcases pieces of some of her major works, most of which are informed by the physical characteristics of the spaces in which they are danced: Cafe Müller necessitates a stage covered in chairs and tables, Le Sacre du Printemps calls for the stage to be completely covered in soil, and Vollmond requires a giant rock and torrents of rain. However, beyond and eclipsing the physicalities of the dances is the dancers' presenting themselves as absolutely basic human emotions (if you can argue that something like yearning is basic, that is). The choreography is so intricate, varied, and new that it's dreamlike and surreal while also feeling completely natural. I found myself wondering alternately "how in the world did this woman craft something so intense and exotic" and "why hasn't this been done before? Of course that's how you spell despair." One dancer remarks that they were inside of Pina as much as she was in them, and that much is very obviously true. Oh, and the entire score is perfect, too, although the dances would be equally effective without paired music. Then there's the remarkable editing, spot-on lighting, impressive use of get the idea. Obsession is...

Do you remember the first time you really listened to and were moved by a Bjork song? It's like that, but more, and for 100 minutes. That's the easiest way I can summarize it.

Score example:

Film trailer:

If you can't tell, I really want to see this movie again in the theatre. It's playing until next Thursday; speak up if you want to go with me! Even if you aren't a "dance enthusiast" (whatever that means) I feel confident saying that you'll love it. And if you don't, well...I might judge you. But then I'll get over it. Most likely.

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