Apr 13, 2013

(Gonzalo Castro, Argentina, 2012, Blu-ray, 79 min)

From the prolific and deeply independent Gonzalo Castro (who handles most every aspect of filming, along with running a publishing house devoted to books on cinema), Dioramas charts the demanding rehearsals of a small contemporary dance company (headed by choreographer Mario Pattin) in a visceral, vérité style: almost documentary-like in its observational mode–as in Wiseman’s portrait of the Paris Opera ballet, La Danse–yet in a minor key devoid of any grand thematic agenda. Dioramas, per its title, sketches subtle tableaux of dance sequences unfolding in their own time, paralleled by the increasingly heated partnership shared by two of the female leads. Unrehearsed desire is contrasted with the rigors of process in this austere drama, its subtle lyricism uncoiling like the dancers themselves.

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