Wim Wenders’ dance-documentary tribute to the late famed choreographer Pina Bausch, filmed in 3D. Avoids most archival footage, telling the story instead through interpretations of Bausch's work being performed now. Now playing nationwide, click for movie times and trailer.
Landing somewhere between a concert movie and documentary, this 3D staging of some of German choreographer Pina Bausch’s most famous routines is a feast for the senses.
Bausch (who died suddenly in 2009) was one of the most influential figures in contemporary dance over the last four decades. Pina gathers members of her dance company to briefly reminisce about dancing under her but predominantly to perform her dances, both on stage and in vivid exterior locations.
To put it simply, 3D has never been better executed in a film. The spatial dynamics and physical presence of modern dance is beautifully served by the technology and Bausch’s routines come to life on screen with extreme tangibility. Even in movies like Avatar, the 3D seems to wear off after half an hour or so but here the effect remains present and vital throughout.
Whilst Pina obviously lacks a traditional narrative, an interest in modern dance isn’t necessary to enjoy the film. For the dances performed on stage, I felt like I was in the audience of a live show. During the exterior performances (which include an amazing sequence aboard a moving monorail), the live surroundings greatly inform the routines. It’s impossible not to feel the emotional intent behind every move. I was transfixed.