Gracie and Ginny are San Diego twins who speak unlike anyone else. Living largely cut off from the world, the two little girls have created a private form of communication that’s an amalgam of the English and German they hear at home. Jean-Pierre Gorin’s free-form, polyphonic nonfiction investigation into this phenomenon looks at the family from a variety of angles, with the director casting himself as a sociological detective of sorts. It’s a delightful and absorbing study of words and faces, mass media and personal isolation, and America’s odd margins. –The Criterion Collection
One of the most intelligent and original minds in cinema today, Jean-Pierre Gorin has carved a unique and important niche in the tradition of documentary film. His ‘journey’ has taken him from philosophy and journalism through to the founding of the radical Dziga Vertov Group with Jean-Luc Godard in 1968. Born in Paris in 1943, Gorin was an ardent cinéphile since his youth.
He received his baccalaureate in Philosophy in 1960, subsequently enrolling at the Sorbonne. Here he took part in the seminars of Louis Althusser, Jacques Lacan, and Michel Foucault. In addition, from 1965 to 1968, Gorin was an editor at Le Monde newspaper, helping create its weekly literary supplement, Le Monde des livres. He wrote dozens of articles, contributing to the political and esthetic debates that would lead eventually to the upheaval of May 1968 and to his partnering with Godard as co-director on some of the most radical and influential political films of that period.
Long fascinated by the… read more
Fascinating examination of environment and communication, and the effects they have upon each other. I made the mistake of googling the twins' whereabouts now and it's kinda depressing. I think they might have been better off before they were pulled out of their own world.
The film has been with me, the girls have been with me. I can't think of a more balanced documentarian approach, not intellectually, but emotionally--which made the viewing (and its after-taste) that much richer. Those dear little weird twins and their ektachrome world together (DK mentioned Darger-directed Godot) wasn't merely informative, but inviting. We all know their language, not linguist's terrain, but love's.
Really splendid and heartbreaking. The use of freeze-frame, and text, and multiple narrators, fell fascinatingly somewhere between Marker and a Godard with heart. Some lovely camera work too from Les Blank (Burden of Dreams). The film itself seems like a reprieve in a story of sadness that you can only imagine gets much sadder afterwards. Someone said the girls' interaction was like a Darger-directed Godot.