Friday, 24 March 2017

MFFF REVIEW: POLINA



7/10

Since ever she could remember, Russian girl Polina always wanted to dance. When anyone asked, she always said that dance happens all by itself. But does she want to be a classical ballerina at the  Bolshoi, as her down on his luck, gangster father dreams? When time comes to choose there'll be no compromises.

POLINA is based on a comic book by French graphic novel writer Bastien Vive. Spanning across several countries this multi-national production nailed the atmosphere of each city and place; and nailed the competitive spirit of the dance world, whether it is a classical ballet or a contemporary dance troupe. The music of Philip Glass and original score by 79D gives a very modern feel to the movie.

The film has a sketchy narrative and many daily life decisions of the characters and their motivations are left unexplained, but what matters here is dance and the way to succeed is to be perfect.

The dance sequences sometimes balance on the edge of fantasy and the viewer is left to decide what really happened and what was just a dream.

The main star of the film, Anastasia Schvetsova, is an experienced dancer with some good dramatic techniques. She feels organic in the role, creating a character slightly at odds with the world and someone who truly comes alive when she dances.

Juliette Binoche in the role of the modern dance teacher is the big surprise of the movie, proving once again she could play anyone and anything. Who would think she could dance like that?

The film lightly touches upon what its like to be a real artist, where hard work is merely a means to the end. What really matters is bravery.


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