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All Critics (26)
| Top Critics (8)
| Fresh (19)
| Rotten (7)
Somewhere at the bottom of this story is an ache about the value of a life.
Its holes or omissions cannot diminish the gaping eloquence of the situation and the questions that arise.
Dreams of a Life unintentionally amounts to a mean-spirited snooze.
For all its subtext about identity and London's social fabric, "Dreams of a Life" leaves too many blanks and is ultimately more frustrating than rewarding.
A riveting tale of a onetime vivacious personality, described by those who knew her as "stunning," "lovely," and "very well liked," but who nevertheless died alone, friendless and seemingly missed by nobody.
Director Morley has at least restored something of a soul to her subject.
Dreams Of A Life is an investigation into the life of one Joyce Vincent; but it's one of those cases that may never be completely solved, leaving the viewer in a positively comtemplative state.
How awfully, strangely death can void a personal identity. The filling-in of the chalk outline remains sketchy, as Morley well knows. This docu-obituary's sharply aware of its own bit-ness, its partial-ness.
I like how Morely juxtaposes urban life with inner life, and how the two don't always intersect.
Disappointing documentary-fiction hybrid on the true story of a woman found dead and alone in an apartment three years after her demise. A pile-up of unanswered questions and unidentified witnesses frustrates more than it intrigues.
Dreams of a Life succeeds in making its point about the unkowability of the people in our lives, but there isn't quite enough substance here to fully sustain the film.
Stunningly perplexing ... while it does leave you terribly bummed out in the end, it also leaves you with a whole lot of questions.
Powerful, enigmatic and moving exploration of s life largely unknown but still celebrated, and mourned. It will make you want to reconnect with family and friends you may have list touch with.
"Dreams of a Life" is an artfully made and haunting documentary about Joyce Vincent whose body was found in her London bedsit(if Wikipedia is to be believed, it's the English equivalent of an SRO) three years after she died, and only because she was about to be evicted for non-payment of rent. While her remains were only idenitifiable through dental records and so badly gone no cause of death could possibly be found, it is the sort of case that is a pipe dream for tabloid reporters. At the same time, the local MP wants answers and filmmaker Carol Morley puts ads in the newspapers to get in touch with former friends and loved ones.(Joyce's older sisters refused to particpate out of privacy for the family.) Through interviews, Morley fills in the gaps of Joyce's timeline, along with faint glimpses of Joyce herself, through a snippet of her voice and a stunning final image.
Joyce's death comes as something of a surprise considering she was only 38.(For the record, her mother was 41 when she died.) But with all the information given and theories floated, the one I don't recall having been given is the possibility that she might have been using drugs. Not to stereotype any more than absolutely necessary, but Joyce tried to get into the music business where musicians have been known to on occasion use drugs. This also might explain her fall from grace and frequent job changes which she tried to hide from her friends with her carefree manner.
A terrible documentary, loaded with tacky recreations and lasting three times too long for the paltry amount of material available about the main issue (a woman who mysteriously died and went undiscovered in her apartment for three years). Instead of forensics, we're forced to sit through interview after interview establishing that the deceased woman was beautiful and was "fancied" by many suitors. Great. Thrilling. Too bad there wasn't time for even one legitimate photograph of the death site.
"Would anyone miss you?"
A filmmaker sets out to discover the life of Joyce Vincent, who died in her bedsit in North London in 2003. Her body wasn't discovered for three years, and newspaper reports offered few details of her life - not even a photograph.
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