The arts have always been the domain of men. Whether it be music, film, literature or painting. All have been traditionally dominated by men in regards to decisions and money made. This is doubly so in the area of music production. Women were not encouraged or welcomed being DJs or producers. Ones who get to create or play the music. There are occasionally the exceptions, however.
This French film, directed by Marc Collin (first film), puts in the spotlight a woman who is the exception. In Paris in the late 1970s the world was undergoing plenty of changes. One of them was music. It was on the cusp of a big transition. Mostly due to the advances in technology. Instead of a collection of musicians playing a variety of different instruments, all those sounds could be made using machines. This is what Ana (Alma Jodorowsky – Blue is the Warmest Color, Kids in Love) turns to.
She is living in a flat in which the owner has gone away and left her to take care of it. In his flat are a wide variety of electronic gadgets. Being a music fan Ana turns to making sounds with them. She loves electronic music and wants to make something of her own. Something original. Though others doubt, she believes in what she is making. Soon her music will signal a new dawn in electronic music.
Collin is a musician himself, so he knows plenty about that world. He understands the impact machines made on the music scene. Collin brings to the screen a different type of music film. One in which people do not sit behind a drum kit or at a piano bench, instead we watch a young woman tap on different machines. As true as it is within the history of music, it is certainly not as interesting as watching someone strap on a Fender and wow us with a scintillating solo.
That is the problem with the film. The lack of oomph. It is not a bad film just rather bland for the most part. Though it will appeal to a certain section of the population will be really thrilled by the sight of the classic drum machines, synthesizers and sequencers. Plus for musicians it shows the struggles of making music. The stops and starts. The struggle to make something good. How hard it is for a newcomer, especially as a woman, to get the attention of those in positions of power in the music industry. It is not a story chock full of action or tension, but it does bring forth a true to life underrepresented story.
The film premiered at the 2020 SXSW Film Festival.