The Arts

ORA

ORA featured image

Reviewed by Paula Citron
September 21, 2011

ORA
Toronto International Film Festival
Directed by Philippe Baylaucq
Choreographed by José Navas
Sept. 8 to 18, 2011

Not all movies are narrative. Some are designed to be works of art. At TIFF, the 15-minute Canadian dancefilm ORA was a stunning example of dance, cinema and music intersecting to create visual beauty.

The film has the distinction of being the first to be shot with 3D thermal imaging cameras. No lighting was used. The heat from the bodies of the six dancers created the light and colour. ORA is directed by Philippe Baylaucq with choreography by Montreal’s José Navas and music by Robert M. Lepage.

Navas’ choreography begins with what looks like a cell and which then divides. And so begins this short film’s imaginative journey through the evolution of mankind.

The choreography is slow and mystical, with no sharp edges, while the music is suitably other worldly. It should be no surprise that the National Film Board, that home of cinematic innovation, produced ORA.

One hopes the film will get seen, at least on television. It is absolutely mesmerizing.

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