A Private War
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All Critics (15)
| Top Critics (2)
| Fresh (13)
| Rotten (2)
Definitely not your standard doc, this is something special ... a captivating journey through a landscape of mystery and imagination.
Steel often succeeds in conjuring a contemplative trance, which is especially impressive given the arcane subject matter.
A wee treasure.
Impressionistic animation illustrates the beauty Boyd created...Megan herself comes off as some kind of fabled creature, never seen, but always admired and respected.
The lazy structure, lack of narrative drive or visual stimulus quickly reveal the reasons that Boyd's life hasn't been tackled cinematically before.
With its lyrical blend of atmospheric Highland footage and expressionist animation, this is much more than a documentary about the dying art of hand-fashioned fishing hooks.
Steel uses animation, crispy cinematography and interviews with Boyd's protégés and friends to chart the depths of this one-of-a-kind businesswoman.
What seems at first an impossibly flimsy and meagre documentary subject slowly reveals itself as cine-miniaturism with charm.
It makes fishing look an Edenic pastime, with Boyd's iridescent feather/fur/hair creations proving that in a prelapsarian world even salmon can have the fine or fatal sensibility of art connoisseurs.
It's a small film, but a quietly affecting one as well.
This is the story of an odd life, and a degree of oddness in its telling is desirable.
Deploys talking heads, dreamy animations and lyrical music to trace the arc of Boyd's life and mount a poetic, poignant tribute to the seductive mystique of a rarefied craft.
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