(director: Jim Whitaker; cinematographer: Thomas Lappin;
Filippini/Brad Fuller; music: Philip Glass;
Runtime: 104; MPAA Rating: NR; producers: Jim
Solomon; Oscilloscope; 2011)
"Whose intimate presentation makes it seem like the ultimate healing process film."
Reviewed by Dennis Schwartz
LA residing director Jim Whitaker takes a decade to fully
reflect on the 9/11 tragedy and the post 9/11
aftereffects. The film is viewed through the eyes of
five people interviewed, whose lives changed
dramatically forever as a result of that incident. The
five are: Tanya,
Tim and Brian, who each lost a loved one firefighter;
teenager Nick who lost in one of the towers his Lehman
Brother's financial worker mother; and Ling, who
worked on the
78th floor of the south tower at the New York State Tax
Department and after being the sole person from her office to
suffered scars over her face, arms and body from
severe burns and has undergone multiple operations.
It's a slow-moving, stark and inspirational heart-pulling character study documentary, whose intimate presentation makes it seem like the ultimate healing process film. It tenderly deals with those who lost loved ones or those who survived but are still tormented over the events of that tragic day. It lets us know that moving on can never mean completely letting go of what happened. Rebirth lets these ordinary folks freely express themselves and in their own words they offer their life philosophies and how they found new beginnings despite still not being able to overcome all their grief.
It's not an easy pic to
watch because these people are real and their emotions
are so raw, as it's both a sobering and pious reminder
of that tragic day. That it is at times too
sentimental, doesn't diminish the importance of such a
record of personal history. But it does make me think
it's more a film one would watch on DVD or on cable
than what one would see at a movie theater.
By having some 14 time-lapse cameras implanted in place on Ground Zero some six months after 9/11, the filmmaker allows us to see how Ground Zero started as an empty pit and how it became an active construction site that eventually brought to fruition the new structures where the Twin Towers once existed.
REVIEWED ON 10/28/2011 GRADE: B-
Dennis Schwartz: "Ozus' World Movie Reviews"
© ALL RIGHTS RESERVED DENNIS SCHWARTZ