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The Disappearance of My Mother(Storia di B – La scomparsa di mia madre)

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Italy · 2019
1h 34m
Director Beniamino Barrese
Starring Benedetta Barzini, Beniamino Barrese, Carlotta Antonelli, Michela De Rossi
Genre Documentary

An aging fashion model, Benedetta Barzini, dreams of escaping the world of images and disappearing for good, but her son’s determination to make a final film about her sparks an unexpected collaboration and confrontation with the camera’s gaze. A fiercely honest look at life after fame, and the relationship between a mother and a son.

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The New York Times by A.O. Scott

At the very least, it’s impossible to watch The Disappearance of My Mother without a measure of ambivalence. Gratitude for the chance to make Barzini’s acquaintance, and for Barrese’s sensitivity in making the introduction, is accompanied by ethical queasiness.


Screen Daily by Allan Hunter

The result of the collaboration between mother and son brings no great epiphanies but it remains a film that both beguiles and unsettles as it salutes a remarkable woman and the enduring demands of ties that bind.


Variety by Dennis Harvey

The Disappearance of My Mother is a successful piece of documentary filmmaking inasmuch as it’s entertaining and dextrously crafted. But its precise intent is unclear.


Slant Magazine by Diego Semerene

It’s fascinating to see Benedetta Barzini in academic action, like an ethnographer of the patriarchy herself, bringing back news from its most glamourous yet rotten core.


Film Threat by Lorry Kikta

The Disappearance of My Mother is rife with grand philosophical questions about beauty, capitalism, love, life, and death, while still maintaining the intimacy of a family connection.


Movie Nation by Roger Moore

The Disappearance of My Mother captures the 1960s supermodel turned ’70s (and beyond) Marxist/feminist, a striking figure who raised children by building an afterlife of journalism, activism and education.

75 by Sheila O'Malley

Barrese follows his mother everywhere. She bikes to teach her classes, and there's lots of thought-provoking footage of her lectures and small conferences with students. These are some of the best sequences in the film.