Matthew Akers and Jeff Dupre’s documentary functions as a glowing retrospective of the Serbian-born performance artist’s career dating back to the 1970s, much of which has involved nudity and physical pain. Its primary focus though is on Abramovic’s 2010 show at MOMA. During this piece, she sat in a chair, staring into the faces of strangers for 736 hours (with breaks for sleeping, etc.). People waited in line for days to see Abramovic, some famous people dropped by (James Franco, naturally) and many tears were shed on both sides. The question—is this art?—is raised but there’s no question as to what the filmmakers believe; there is more adoration here than critical thinking. That said, the lushly photographed Marina Abramovic is as seductive as you’d expect a portrait of unstoppable charisma to be and the performance itself, in which museumgoers demonstrate over and over again how much they want to feel noticed, connected and part of something, is riveting.
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