Self Made

Movies, Documentary
4 out of 5 stars
Self Made
Do you remember the British artist Gillian Wearing's photos from the mid-1990s of people holding up white cards on which they scrawled confessions? Now Wearing brings her studies in identity and self-projection to cinema with this documentary record of a collaboration between her and Sam Rumbelow, a London-based Method acting teacher. Seven daring non-actors, each with personal issues of varying complexity, answer a newspaper advert and join a cathartic workshop with Rumbelow to explore themselves through theatre. What we witness is raw and sometimes uncomfortable as Rumbelow pushes them to reveal themselves. Five finally appear in short films: one deals with father issues by playing Cordelia in an extract from ‘King Lear’; another reflects her relationship fears in a 1940s-set piece about courtship. Documentary segues into drama, and the film is a lucid, concise précis of a project of great emotional intensity.

By: Dave Calhoun

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Director: Gillian Wearing