Watched Jul 19, 2012
Mackenzie Snow’s review:
The first documentary I've ever seen in 3D, "pina" is an aesthetically gorgeous and very intimate story of a German modern dance choreographer and dancer Pina Bausch, told through the eyes and mouths of her family of dancers and collaborators.
This Wim Wenders-directed film that took the Academy Awards by storm (for almost being the first feature to be nominated for both Best Foreign Language and Best Documentary) is probably too arthouse for the general public. By juxtaposing dance pieces that Bausch had choreographed with testimonials from the dancers of their idol, Wenders' film works almost like a "story within a story" - two different timelines, two different narrations, two different worlds.
Compared to another documentary that focused on the world of dancing, "La danse" (directed by Frederick Wiseman, released in 2009), "pina" is on a different level of exposition. In fact, the dances featured in the film can tell a story of its own. They're not only memories retained by the dancers, but they are borderline surrealistic numbers - some are very hard to interpret and most are thought-provoking, if not downright disturbing. So whereas "La danse" is a look into the professionalism and maintenance of quality of a dance company, "pina" is more of a celebration of an artist's work.
Too arthouse to be mainstream (if you can actually call documentaries 'mainstream' at all), "pina" is not for everyone. This is no "Senna" or "An Inconvenient Truth" or even "Man On Wire". But this is "pina". And she means something to quite a lot of people, making this documentary deserving of our attention if only for