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Camera Obscura

Directed by María Victoria Menis

Argentina-France | 85 minutes | 2008

Spanish with English subtitles

At the end of the 19th century, a baby girl is born only feet from the new world as a ship of immigrants docks in Buenos Aires harbor. Shy and self-conscious, Gertrudis grows up and into her role as the ugly duckling in a colony of Argentinean Jews. She fashions herself almost invisible, even hiding her face in photographs. After she is married off to an older, wealthy Jewish rancher, Gertrudis meets expectations and raises a family. The years pass and she finds solace in the beauty of everyday life, turning the tasks of setting the table or preparing a meal into aesthetic pursuits. One day her husband invites a gentle, nomadic French photographer to take a family portrait. His wondrous Surrealist photographs and uncompromising vision, allow Gertrudis to see herself for the first time. A lyrical, inventive new feature film from award-winning Argentine director María Victoria Menis, Camera Obscura employs a number of visual innovations, including original Surrealist-inspired photographs and black-and-white films, archival World War I photographs, and hand-drawn color animation. Beautifully shot on location, this luminous, remarkable film captures the rich landscape of Buenos Aires Province, and its fertile forests, fields, lagoons, and rivers.
Foreign Title La cámara oscura
Director María Victoria Menis
Countries of Production Argentina-France
Year of Presentation 2008
Language(s) Spanish with English subtitles
Premiere Status
Runtime 85 minutes
Principal Cast Mirta Bogdasarian, Fernando Armani, Patrick Dell'Isola
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