Over the course of four films—Never Eat Alone (2016), Veslemøy’s Song (2018), MS Slavic 7 (2019), and now, Point and Line to Plane—the central character, Audrey Benac, has evolved into something of an amalgam of director Sofia Bohdanowicz and the actor who portrays her, Deragh Campbell. The title of the new film is taken from the 1926 book by artist and theorist Wassily Kandinsky, and early on, there is a closeup of a brief passage Audrey is reading that sets the agenda: “Every phenomenon can be experienced in two ways. These two ways are not arbitrary, but are bound up with the phenomenon—developing out of its nature and characteristics: Externally—or—internally.”
Audrey’s voice-over narration, a near-constant throughout the film’s eighteen minutes, is ostensibly addressed to the viewer but with an intimacy that suggests an ongoing internal monologue, a deeply personal coming to terms with the recent loss of two close friends rendered as a sequence of objective observations of the external world Audrey moves through. The phenomena Audrey experiences extend beyond her losses to a network of seemingly coincidental connections between the lives of her friends and the art they made and loved—including Kandinsky’s, of course, but also the paintings of his contemporary, Hilma af Klint, whose abstract designs predated Kandinsky’s compositions. “At this point, Bohdanowicz has a recognizable style and sensibility, and as ever with this filmmaker, Point and Line to Plane
is heady and heartfelt, as well as (for the first time) a little bit mystical,” writes Adam Nayman
for Cinema Scope.
Hilma af Klint’s work speaks to Kristen Stewart’s character in Olivier Assayas’s Personal Shopper
(2016) as well, and as Justine Smith
writes in the introduction to her interview with Bohdanowicz for Seventh Row, “Assayas’s ghost movie is similarly about the relationships between technology and grief, as well as coincidence and spiritualism. In a way, all of Bohdanowicz’s films treat her artistic influences as part of the reality of her characters’ experience. More than just bookends or references, art is woven into the very fabric of the film’s existence, as potent as a memory or an encounter.”
Michael Sicinski finds Point and Line to Plane to be “a fascinating film that is half digressive essay, half statement of personal mourning, and the halting, formalist tone Bohdanowicz and Campbell adopt throughout the film seem designed to confound the viewer's customary avenues of feeling . . . What Bohdanowicz's film actually does is keep us suspended, and by doing so, convey the feeling of suspended time that characterizes mourning, almost transmitting it by convection.”
When Point and Line
screened in Toronto, Pat Mullen
interviewed Bohdanowicz and Campbell for POV Magazine,
and they told him that they’re currently writing another “Audrey installment,” a feature to be shot in three different countries. Campbell, in the meantime, will soon reunite with director Kazik Radwanski and actor Matt Johnson for a followup to last year’s Anne at 13,000 ft.
In Matt and Mara,
she’ll play a professor whose marriage is going through a rocky period when she meets Matt, a friend from her past.
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