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Behind the Mirror Movie Review

Title: Behind the Mirror

Director: Minos Papas

Starring: Matt Hopkins, Daniela Mastropietro, Nando Del Castillo, Flint Beverage, Demosthenes Chrysan, JP Serret, Vanessa Kai.

Minos Papas is an award winning filmmaker, writer, producer, director and cinematographer based in New York City. Papas runs an indie production company – Cyprian Films – that offers a variety of film production services. Prior to becoming a film director, he established himself as a cinematographer…and it shows!

So far his previous shorts, features, narratives and documentaries have defined him as someone capable of evoking David Lynch and Dante’s Inferno. This trait is evident in his latest feature film ‘Behind the Mirror,’ since the exploration of the metaphysical becomes a more profound and intimate journey of a troubled individual.

Xavier (Matt Hopkins) is a traumatised writer who has recently moved to the town of New Rome with his wife, Sandra (Daniela Mastropietro), and their two children, for a new start in life. When the locals begin to harass him over his objections to the construction development on the riverbank, Xavier lashes out. The situation becomes aggravated when he meets James (Nando Del Castillo), a stranger who lures him into a series of shamanic sessions involving hallucinogens, which force him to confront his demons. In the process a shadow-self is born, whose influence Xavier has a hard time controlling. As the pressure from his surroundings mounts, Xavier spirals out of control, leading to a dramatic confrontation with the people around him.

Just like in John Ford’s ‘The battle of Midway’ the story begins following a genre and along the way the narrative abruptly changes style. This indie flick will draw you in a thrilling and eerie crescendo of expressionistic haunting figments, that are habitually achieved by high budget movies.

Technical: A

Acting: B-

Story: B-

Overall: B+

Written by: Chiara Spagnoli Gabardi

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Chiara Spagnoli Gabardi, is a film critic, culture and foreign affairs reporter, screenwriter, film-maker and visual artist. She studied in a British school in Milan, graduated in Political Sciences, got her Masters in screenwriting and film production and studied at the Lee Strasberg Theatre and Film Institute in New York and Los Angeles. Chiara’s “Material Puns” use wordplay to weld the title of the painting with the materials placed on canvas, through an ironic reinterpretation of Pop-Art, Dadaism and Ready Made. She exhibited her artwork in Milan, Rome, Venice, London, Oxford, Paris and Manhattan. Chiara works as a reporter for online, print, radio and television and also as a film festival PR/publicist. As a bi-lingual journalist (English and Italian), who is also fluent in French and Spanish, she is a member of the Foreign Press Association in New York, the Women Film Critics Circle in New York, the Italian Association of Journalists in Milan and the Federation of Film Critics of Europe and the Mediterranean. Chiara is also a Professor of Phenomenology of Contemporary Arts at IED University in Milan.

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