Atlas (2013) - Antoine d'Agata
Antoine d'Agata's Atlas is a visual poem of despair that is more-or-less a journey straight into hell. Taking place in the world of prostitution and drug abuse, Antoine d'Agata's film captures this dark side of human nature, showing the toll this lifestyle has on the human body and soul. Juxtaposing absolutely beautiful imagry tat is almost like oil paintings with voiceover narration of various prostitutes and drug abusers , d'Agata delivers a truly unforgettable look into suffering and despair that's haunting and unforgettable. Atlas is without question one of the most visually stunning films I've seen in years, with every shot being beautifully realized, evoking a sense of despair, loneliness and addiction that plagues the subjects of d'Agata's documentary. I can't imagine this being an easy film for Antoine d'Agata to make, as Atlas gets up close and personal with its subjects, providing a clear window into the souls of these tortured individuals. Each woman's experience is intimate but similar, as Atlas manages to capture how they have no place for feelings in their world, being merely an object of manipulation, a piece of meat, where love doesn't exist only sadness and solitude. Atlas is a film that captures the protective capabilites of the mind, with many of these women subconsciously blocking memories out, becoming emotionally stoic as they blur time during their darker moments to hide the pain. Antoine d'Agata's Atlas is a complex depiction of the darker side of humanity that will provoke and repel, that without question will stay in my mind for a long time.
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