Ospedale (1997)

Extracts from Ospedale (1997)

An experimental documentary film, made in a provincial general hospital in Italy. The film moves through different areas and departments of the hospital, examining both functional and emotional structures. Strains of music are orchestrated with sounds found in the hospital, and juxtaposed against images to shape the varying rhythms of the film. Conversation fragments pepper the soundtrack with different perspectives on the hospital. In the film the human body is set against the support but also the intrusion of technology. The film's sense of time is unpredictable, often suspended in an even pace, anticipation may flip into crisis at any moment, or ease into a sense of resolve. The complexities of relationships between the range of people in the hospital is explored, also the nature of their physical and mental contact. A sense of vulnerability is engendered in the viewer as extreme situations are compressed within the sequence of interlocking episodes.

'Goodwin visually catalogues the tensions of the hospital a place simultaneously hopeful and fatalistic. The film is suffused with lives at very different stages: some just beginning to unfold, some ebbing, as the camera zooms into patients' rooms from the outside, emphasising emotional displacement, human presence and visible pain. The morbid finality of the stainless steel clad autopsy room, with its laid out cadaver, is redeemed with a romantically metaphysical image from the hospital helicopter taking off like a departing soul, offering a bird's eye view of the city.'

(quoted extract written by Simon Wallis in catalogue of Dryden Goodwin : Recent Video Works)

Direction, Production, Camera, Editing and Sound - Dryden Goodwin

Distributed by the Lux Centre, London UK

Stills from Ospedale - Copyright Dryden Goodwin

Stills from Ospedale