Despite the cultural advances of the moment, many prejudices generated by the obscurantism of the past centuries dominated by Christian fanaticism continue to condemn people to a retrograde perception. Trying to attack some of the fatal stereotypes of the current world, ‘Ophelia‘ is a sensitive, delicate and cynical short film that addresses one of the most painful personal experiences of the modern individual: depression. Being conscious of either the unawareness or the repulsion of the ignorant against the victims of this psychological scourge, who are often condemned to a mute and implosive suffering, director Celina Mae Medina lucidly analyses the superficial way people relate to depression, while minimizing the magnitude of this mental affection they prefer to regard it as a temporary whim. This almost phlegmatic attitude that starts from the general tendency to put psychological problems under the sign of taboo is perhaps the most delicate subject of this uncomfortable and tragic project that surprised us by the painful authenticity of the protagonist’s tragedy.
Affected by the tense relationship with her girlfriend, Ophelia becomes aware of the fact that she is experiencing the symptoms of depression. Despite her requests to be assisted by a psychiatrist, her parents consider that some alternative methods that would help Ophelia rediscover God are more useful.
Unlike other famous films focused on such emotional wounds, Celina Mae Medina prefers to ignore the protagonist’s interiority (subjective perspectives or nightmarish projections of the tormented soul are totally lacking), concentrating her whole energy to highlight the reactions of the ignorant witnesses who condescendingly offer miraculous advice. As a consequence, the action of the film proceeds slowly, following a somewhat minimalist cinematographic formula, without insisting on moments of brutal drama (on the contrary), surprising daily discussions or moments of total silence, as if the director didn’t propose to condemn a general bad attitude, but to surprise with cynicism a small family drama. It is through this seemingly facile attitude with which the director indirectly depicts the emotional agony of the victims of depression, that the short film ‘Ophelia’ acquires a special force juggling with the spectators’ emotions in order to provide them a brief radiograph to multiple valences that the modern individual’s ignorance can reach.