Shuttling between two time frames and two locations (Buenos Aires and NYC), Hermia & Helena revolves around theatre director Camila (Piñeiro regular Agustina Muñoz, never better), who accepts an artistic fellowship exchange to an unnamed New York institute to ostensibly work on a Spanish translation of A Midsummer Night’s Dream. As in the director’s previous Shakespeare riffs, elements and characters from the Bard’s play begin to intersect and overlap with the multiple story strands Piñeiro weaves around this central situation. At first bored and alienated in her new surroundings, Camila is soon launched upon a series of dalliances and extraordinary encounters, including with a mysterious and intense French former fellow (actor and director Mati Diop) and, in a heart-rending sequence, her biological father (played with effortless grace by filmmaker Dan Sallitt). As her adventures are played and replayed against an ever-expanding dramatis personae, each new character variously revealing and teasing out different facets of herself, Camila experiences a constant tugging between hemispheres, languages, cultures, and hearts. [Synopsis courtesy of TIFF]
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