Secret Life (2008), the first of three films by Reynold Reynolds that compose the Secrets Trilogy, is an experimental work that encompasses themes such as the passing of time, human relationship with nature and the idea of motion.
With a claustrophobic scenery filled with plants in constant movement and a young female protagonist seen reenacting both moments of day to day life and acts of surreal desperation, Secret Life creates a dream-like world where loneliness and routine go hand in hand, movement is mechanical and time a constant presence as it ticks away in the background.
All of this was achieved through six months of work in a complex setting and in particular through the director’s use of time lapse photography which reflects his scientific approach to filmmaking.
The choice of a woman as the main subject is also particularly powerful because of the relationship Reynolds creates between her and food. Throughout the film we often see her eating compulsively and brushing a fake blonde wig, the combination of these scenes reflect the struggle of women in our society to fit a prototype of ideal beauty and forms a close dialogue with eating disorders and other mental illnesses.
Images courtesy of the Artist
Secret Life, Germany 2008