Wednesday 23 January 2008

My Dad is 100 Years Old (2005)

This is a fascinating little 17 minute short, directed by Guy Maddin but really the work of Isabella Rossellini, writing about her father, the director Roberto Rossellini. It begins with anecdotes but quickly turns into an intellectual discussion about the purpose of film in which she plays every character, many of which we know well. Not only does she play her father's voice, but her mother, Ingrid Bergman, and a whole host of other names, depicted in appropriate ways.

She only plays her father's voice but she plays her mother in body too, on the screen. She's also Alfred Hitchcock from a distance and in silhouette, David O Selznick behind smoke, Charlie Chaplin speaking via title cards and Federico Fellini as, well, Federico Fellini. She even talks to the cameraman during the film to frame the picture in ways he would have felt appropriate.

It's an interesting little vignette, worth a repeat viewing for sure. It doesn't talk details, it talks impressions, and I wonder how long these ones will stay impressed.

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