A Space In Time is an intimate portrait of one family’s struggle to transcend a fatal muscle wasting disease and their home changes to accommodate this disease. Directed by Nick Taussig and Riccardo Servini, the subject is carefully handled, an artful approach that allows us to gain an insight into a disease rarely spoken about.
Nick Taussig, who is producer of Audrey, Stardust, McQueen and Churchill is clearly versed in docs, just an entirely different style. With his family suffering from this disease there is intimacy to this documentary as he personally speaks to us through this film. Riccardo Servini’s background is on editing and directing shorts and collectively this makes sense, and if watched with no knowledge of their backgrounds, you can see that they work well collaboratively to intimately speak to it’s audience about Duchenne, and how it impacts on this family.
Duchenne muscular dystrophy is is a severe type of muscular dystrophy that primarily affects boys. Muscle weakness usually begins around the age of four, and worsens quickly. Muscle loss typically occurs first in the thighs and pelvis followed by the arms. A Space In Time not only focuses on the debilitating features of the disease but becomes an unlikely celebration of the disabled life.
The film carries us through an up-close, poetic and voyeuristic portrait of a family surviving, adapting and thriving through the ups and downs of the disease, as we see Theo and Oskar’s gradual transition from walking to greater wheelchair dependency, both through their eyes and the eyes of their parents, director Nick Taussig and artist Klara Taussig. As the documentary progresses we see the parents, Nick and Klara learn to cope with the inevitable reality of losing their sons to an illness that currently has no cure, which is in itself deeply saddening and somewhat debilitating for the audience as we gain a personal understanding into their feelings of helplessness and inability to keep their children from the hazards and risks of life.
This documentary is basically the story of a family seeking to transcend disability, with the two young boys at the heart of the film, and their parents, ultimately left to wonder whether their rare disease and disability, is not a weakness but instead a superpower, something extraordinary. With this positive mindset and resilience to their disease this is a wonderfully life affirming documentary that makes you relish in the life that you each have. The Taussigs are a remarkable family that you cannot help but feel revived by, and A Space In Time is a wonderfully insightful and intimate piece of work spotlighting a rare disease and the impacts it can have on a family as a unit as well as those suffering. Skilfully crafted.
A Space In Time will open in cinemas and digitally in UK & Ireland from Monday 17th May supported by the BFI Audience Award