7 February 2018 | JvH48
Saw this at the Rotterdam Film Festival 2018 (website: iffr.com/en). In two words: Completely incomprehensible. Though subsequent scenes were trying to tell sort of a story by themselves and thus were self-contained and somewhat watchable, the overarching logic completely went past me. If it were not that I had to attend the next movie in the same venue, I would have walked out prematurely. This movie was selected for the Hivos Tiger Award competition, the flag ship of the IFFR festival, hence arising expectations, yet I cannot imagine what was special or interesting about this movie.
It may be "cute" to make an 8-year old girl the main protagonist, and many will deem that an achievement in itself, but it does not work on me at all. I cannot avoid a comparison with the film Jimmie I saw yesterday, at the IFFR opening event, with a 4-year old boy as main character. In the latter case it was fully functional, carrying the core of the message how a 4-year-old experiences being dragged through a series of hostile environments (sea, borders, etc), hence it meant something there and fitting the context.
Back to the movie Nervous Translation: It is a proven fact that I'm not alone in this negative appreciation, as it received a lowly 170th place (out of 187) for the audience award.