The burden of loneliness can be so unbearable that certain people obsessed with the special moments from the past create, from the absence of their beloved, fictional universes whose strength often exceed the sense of reality. However, these imaginary plunges of those facing isolation are not always an occasion to explore an even deeper suffering, but, on the contrary, a reason to highlight the ephemeral beauty of the feelings that make us human. ‘The Adventurer’s Diary‘ focuses on an engaging protagonist who comes in front of the viewers with all her love and humanity dedicated to the memory of her husband, in an attempt to recover at any cost at least one fragment of the absolute happiness experienced at the beginning of their relationship. By professionally avoiding the melodramatic nuances that could have pushed this short film into a way too pathetic area to capture the attention and sensibility of demanding viewers, Ben Wicks creates a kind of modern fairy tale “on the road”, opting for an empathetic main character who manages to provide both an insight into the deep pain of a soul tormented by old age and by the loss of emotional harmony, but also a life lesson full of optimism that approaches our organic need for love. Without attacking the inflections of a visceral realism, the atmosphere of this fantasy-like odyssey is impregnated with the poetry of films similar to those signed by Jaco Van Dormael, to tell us a universal story about the fragility of the human being that only the purity of their feelings can save them from total extinction.
After the ghost of her beloved husband wakes her up one night, Marion is increasingly determined to make a journey to the place where their destinies were forever united, to the place that started off the magic of a special love that neither death can defeat.
Despite its rather simple narrative premises, the “magic” of this short film consists in Ben Wicks’ ability to delicately construct the universal portrait of the one who is haunted by the burden of their beloved’s absence, sensibly exploring the existence of a person unable to fully live her own present. Thus, Marion is a kind of modern Orpheus who descends into the immaterial world of her Edenic past, in order to recover with all her senses the memory of her husband, mentally constructing a new harmonious existence, surrounded by celestial music and dreamlike colours, far from the biological laws of a world way too preoccupied with the current moment. Thus, although it is a sensitive short film dedicated to any viewer, ‘The Adventurer’s Diary’ offers a unique experience especially to the nostalgic ones who manage to face the challenges of the present only with the help of the pure beauty moments they distil from their past experiences.