The Machine Which Makes Everything Disappear (2013)
A filmmaker puts out a casting call for young adults, aged 15- to 23. The director wants to make a film about growing up in her home country, Georgia, and find commonalities across social and ethnic lines. She travels through cities and villages interviewing the candidates who responded and filming their daily lives. The boys and girls who responded to the call are radically different from one another, as are their personal reasons for auditioning. Some want be movie stars and see the film as a means to that end; others want to tell their personal story. One girl wants to call to account the mother who abandoned her; one boy wants to share the experience of caring for his handicapped family members; another wants to clear the name of a brother, currently serving a jail sentence. Together, their tales weave a kaleidoscopic tapestry of war and love, wealth and poverty, creating an extraordinarily complex vision of a modern society that still echoes with its Soviet past. (c) Icarus … More
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Critic Reviews for The Machine Which Makes Everything Disappear
The individual moments in the film can be bleak but compelling, although the overall impact is blunted by a dearth of context or authorial voice.
[A] thoughtful but slow and random snapshot of life in the former Soviet republic of Georgia.
Pure film poetry woven from the daily woes and joy of a most unpoetic people.
The film produces moments that catch in the throat, like the man who sheepishly admits he would need rehearsal to laugh on cue. Then he adds, softly, "But cry, no problem."
No doubt it's affecting, but Gurchiani hasn't effectively connected the pieces to shape a larger story about Georgian youth.
There are no Hollywood endings here. There's just the truth, which Gurchiani has proved she's committed to capturing.
A film less regional than universal in its presentation of the human urge to reshape oneself with others' help.
The experiment isn't more than a slice of life, but at least it's a generous one.
It ever so subtly zeros in on the extreme particularities of a remote place to find something universal, or at the very least easily comprehensible about despair.
The effect of "Machine" is similar to an anthology of short stories woven around a singular setting. Every life in it is a window onto both a unique and shared destiny.
Director Tinatin Gurchiani offers a snapshot of her Georgian homeland, but she also taps into universal concerns about family, separation and identity.
Fitfully depressing and bravely open, Gurchiani's film commiserates on life's fleeting and often harrowing destinies...
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