Gaia – Movie review

9th December 2019

In the November issue I came across a really special movie. Winner of two awards at the 12 Months Film Festival, Gaia is noted for the ability of the director to transform the character universe into what we wanted to be from such a story. We learn that Gaia is a student currently on vacation, in a quiet house on the outskirts, where she spends her time cultivating flowers.

From the first moments we realize how the film pushes us through its cold atmosphere. The lack of music or stronger background sounds, this continuous silence, makes us feel that right moment for the installation of a psychotic episode, which happens materializing in Ariel, the second personality of Gaia.

The meeting with Gaia’s father from the middle of the movie reinforces our anxiety and we dive deeper into this world of the main character.
The action takes place in the evening, mostly inside the houses, a large house, old painted in cold colors. The isolation and acceptance of the interior space as a carousel of the mind makes us believe that our character really has this dual personality. We find out that our protagonist suffered in childhood from the abuses of the native father and that her current father is a stepfather. Thus, the story is complete, leaving no room for interpretation or question marks. The oral delivery of the denouement by the stepfather destroys, in my opinion, that uncertainty and anguish built so well to the end. In the last sequence, a re-introduction of the mystery is attempted through the last frame in which Gaia enters a dark room, but the length of this scene is not large enough and it cannot bring me close to the anguish felt during the film.

Viewed as a whole, the film is constructed very carefully, with details like subliminally inserted texts (drink coffee), the stove that probably boils in the void, or the outdoor garden where Gaia plants flowers or cleanses weeds and dried leaves. The details mentioned show us the maturity of the director and the production team and the seriousness with which the subject is treated.
Gaia remains one of our favorite movies and we hope to see as many good movies as possible from Kadu Zargalio in the future.
Alexandru Vlad

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