The unusual Nana is filmed from the perspective of a child. Four-year-old Nana walks with a childlike purity through a world that is partly paradise, partly hard and realistic. An intimate and overwhelming debut by the artist and photographer Valérie Massadian.
Nana, awarded the prize for best debut at the Locarno Film Festival, sees the world from the standpoint of an independent four-year-old girl in the French countryside. When she comes home one day, she finds the house empty. There is no explanation for the disappearance of her mother, so the viewer has no idea about the adult world – just like the little girl, who goes her own way.
She manages very well, thank you. She dresses herself, heads into the woods, jumps over a stream, eats a sandwich. The dandelions and the moss are like a great adventure for her, nor does she shut her eyes at the sight of a dead hare or a slaughtered pig.
Nana exchanges an explicit narrative line for a relaxed look at the primeval instincts of a child who is allowed to be herself, without adults to project their ideas on her. The refined lighting and clever compositions betray Massadian’s background as a photographer; she worked with Nan Goldin for a long time. –IFFR
In Valérie Massadian’s Nana, childhood is redrawn as a time of beautiful and disquieting solitude.
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