Review: ‘Kill Gil Vol. 2 & ½’

The final installment of Gil Rossellini's video diary makes for sobering viewing -- especially since the helmer died of complications from a staphylococcus infection just two days after shooting his final image.

The final installment of Gil Rossellini’s video diary makes for sobering viewing — especially since the helmer died of complications from a staphylococcus infection just two days after shooting his final image. “Kill Gil Vol. 2 & ½ ” picks up where the last docu ended, but with a dwindling sense of hope that makes this part of the trilogy particularly moving. Fest play is unlikely to be as extensive as it was for the first episode, though targeting speciality markets may help extend the film’s viewership.

As with his other two docus (preemed in Venice), Rossellini does not shy away from lensing the ravages of both his disease and the operations — 45 in three years. More perhaps than the previous installments, the current film drives home an understanding that Rossellini’s obsession with filming his deterioration stemmed from a need to keep working, turning his illness into a means to occupy time through the endless interventions and near constant pain. Even more scaled down than the others, pic lacks the family participation that made the first two saleable abroad. Squeamish auds will wince during amputation surgery.

Kill Gil Vol. 2 & ½

Italy

Production

A Rossellini & Associates production, in association with Consequenze. (International sales: Rossellini & Associates, Rome.) Produced by Gil Rossellini, Marco Donati, Nicola Lodi-Fe. Directed by Gil Rossellini, Federico Lai. Written by Rossellini.

Crew

Camera (color, DigiBeta), Rossellini, Lai; editor, Lai; music, Pericle Sponzilli, Lai, Rossellini; associate producers, Cinzia Monreale, Stefano Pierpaoli. English, Italian dialogue. Reviewed at Rome Film Festival (Extra), Oct. 29, 2008. Running time: 69 MIN.
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