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Elena and the Healing Power of Time

By Elise Nakhnikian – The L Magazine –  5/28/2014

An homage to the beloved older sister cowriter-director Petra Costa lost when she was 7-years-old, Elena is a detailed anatomy of grief—and a poetic tribute to life, love, and the transformative power of art. Costa combines family video, photos and testimonials from her sister with new footage of herself and New York, the city where she retraces the contours of Elena’s life and explores its effect on her own. Her entrancing, beautiful footage frequently features blurred images, soft colors, slow pans, and slow motion. The images of water set the stage for her concluding metaphor for the healing power of time: “Little by little, the pain turns to water, becomes memory.”

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