Made In Canada Review: Looking Is The Original Sin
Cast: Katie Boland, Maria del Mar, Jayne Eastwood
Director: Gail Harvey
Editor’s Notes: Looking Is The Original Sin will have its world premiere at the Montreal World Film Festival on August 23th with an additional screening on August 24th.
Greatness can be a gift as well as a curse. To be truly great, one must invest oneself fully in their work, must give up a large part of their soul for what they do. Selfishness is a negative trait, but in many ways it is an inherent aspect of greatness. The annals of cinema are full to the brim of “great man” stories that focus on the triumphs and downplay the collateral damage left in the wake of titanic achievements. Looking Is The Original Sin is a rare gem then, distinct in two ways: This is a story of a “great woman” and one focused intently, almost exclusively on the damage that strive for excellence can cause. Based heavily on the life of Diane Arbus, the film follows Helene (Maria Del Mar), a photographer dealing with depression and instability, and her tumultuous relationship with her daughter Anna (Katie Boland, Gail Harvey’s real-life daughter), who also finds herself adrift. The two ruin each other even as they strive to save each other, and the film is smart about the compromises they make and the validity of their choices.
This is a story of a “great woman” and one focused intently, almost exclusively on the damage that strive for excellence can cause.