Wednesday, November 7, 2018
Nate Hood on See You Tomorrow God Willing (2018) DOC NYC 2018
But then, that’s part of what drew these women in the first place—the peace, the regularity, the predictability. It’s this private world of faith and sisterhood that Vera attempts to investigate with this film, a documentary which gains much of its charm from its inability to maintain objectivity in the presence of such adorable old biddies. The very first shot of the film stares through an open door into a corridor where various sisters walk by and greet Ainara good morning—one even pauses a moment and tells her she should eat something! By the final shot, a repeat of the first which sees the sisters going to bed, we can hear Ainara replying to their well wishes.
Much of the film is deliberate eavesdropping, and there’s a simple, warm satisfaction to be found in overhearing their harmless conversations about old age and faith. “Living together, you know, is the hardest thing in life,” one of them gently sighs, “While living together, we rub against each other like pebbles in a river. And we polish each other, like rolling stones.”
But the film’s problem is that at only sixty-one minutes, it’s ultimate too short and too unfocused to leave any kind of impact. There are moments of wistful sadness such as when some of the nuns look at old photos of long dead friends and family members, but there’s also a briefness to these scenes that keep them from doing more than simply washing over us. It’s pleasant, yes, but I doubt I’ll remember it in a week.