Ottica Zero

Ottica Zero


Reviewed by: Amber Wilkinson

Nadya Cazan was an Italian actress who was on the verge of great things when she decided to drop off the map. This is the story of why she did, it turns out - although it isn’t obvious that it is initially, all of which makes this documentary somewhat confusing.

The experimental stylings don’t help either. Although the fuzzy black and white, futuristic imagery is nice to look at, it is unclear what bearing it has until a good way through the film. Equally a voice -over, talking of a better world, isn’t accredited at the start, meaning that you spend far too long wondering who is talking and what the connection is to Nadya.

Later it becomes apparent that the male voice-over is 91-year-old futurist John Fresco, talking about the possibility of a Utopian society which he insists isn’t, in fact, a Utopia. Pieces regarding Nadya, meanwhile, seem to be read out by Nadya - now using the name Nem and speaking about the person she was, whom she considers "dead" - in the third person.

As an argument on how the world needs to change, with a coming together of cultures and religions into some sort of harmony it feels distinctly didactic and, while the accompanying imagery is quite impressive, it is more of a distraction than an aid to the story. Documentaries first duty should be to inform, not confuse. It would be interesting to see what director Maja Borg could achieve with either a simpler subject matter or simpler stylings.

Reviewed on: 20 Aug 2007
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Exploration of one woman's quest for a better future.

Director: Maja Borg

Year: 2007

Runtime: 13 minutes

Country: UK

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