Friday, January 14, 2011
Marwencol is a documentary about the healing power of imagination. Mark Hogancamp is assaulted after closing down a bar in upstate New York. He suffers trauma, brain damage, memory loss. At a local hospital he receives reconstructive surgery. Before his rehabilitation is complete, he’s sent home for lack of funds. He starts to play with dolls. Working with their tiny parts improves his motor skills and hand-eye coordination. He acts out fantasies of revenge, love, heroism. In his backyard he builds a miniature town for the dolls and calls it Marwencol. It’s a Belgian village circa 1943. Beautiful women live there with soldiers who desert their armies and find common cause protecting Marwencol from the SS. Hogancamp photographs the scenes he creates with the dolls. The pictures find an audience in the New York art world. He’s a success. You can’t but feel happy for him; it's great to see this lonely, talented man finally catch a break. Directed by Jeff Malmberg. 2010.