Film Review: Pina, a film by Wim Wenders

Pina is an art film by Wim Wenders dedicated to Pina Bausch, a German choreographer who has given the world some amazing avant garde dance … which is very hard to describe.

I’d like to share this clip from the soundtrack by talented musician Jun Miyake. It’s called Lilies of the Valley. It gives you a sense of how upbeat some of the music is, although many of the pieces were also dark and deeply emotional to watch.

This piece, from the Opening, I felt to be the strongest of the entire film. You immediately know, when you watch a piece like this you are going to be watching something extraordinary.

What you don’t see in this clip though, is how the dancers start the scene – by spreading dirt on the stage to dance on as their surface.

There is a lot of use of open air settings, using “props” like dirt or water, or other natural elements… leaves, grass, etc to convey something larger than just human beings interacting with one another, they are interacting with the entire world and its environment.

Here are some other arresting images and music from the film:

I have one criticism of this film though. First, Pina was presented in 3D and it was the concensus of me and my friend, along with the chatter of others in the audience when the film was over, that the 3D didn’t add enough to the presentation of the film to justify its use. When going to the art house for one movie costs $16 or $17 bucks in Manhattan, you know your audience is expecting you to wow them if you’re going to bother with 3D.

You’d think a clip like this would be enhanced by 3D, but I swear, what you see here is basically the same thing I saw in the theater:

Finally, I’m not a big dance afficianado, but I enjoyed this film. My friend, who loves dance, came out of the movie on a cloud, she really loved every minute of it. There were spots that dragged a bit for me, and because some of the dancing is deeply emotional, it’s quite difficult to sit through two hours of dancing with no plot and essentially no dialogue.

I would recommend going to see this film if you enjoy dance, especially contemporary avant garde dance, but be prepared to pay that extra bit for 3D glasses you don’t really need.

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8 Responses

  1. Excellent review.

  2. Agreed, excellent review! I’ve really been wanting to see this!

    • Given your very poetic nature, I think you would LOVE this film. The combination of the scenery, props, music and of course the amazing dance … yep, you’d enjoy it Louise.

  3. You’ve sold me Carol! I’ll be sure to check it out.

    • If you like the clips in the review, you already know what you’re getting basically. (Hope it isn’t too much of a spoiler, esp. because I love that first piece best…)

  4. I haven`t seen the film yet, Carol. But I will soon.

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