Potential Victim (Victima Potencial) (2018)

Potential Victim (Victima Potencial) first published by EyeforFilm

Positing an iconic star as vampiric avatar of the internet age, Potential Victim (Victima Potencial) is both postmodern experiment and extended music video. Chilean singer Sofía Oportot plays a version of herself, sustained, perhaps for eternity, by the dissemination online of her image and music by younger obsessive fans, who are themselves inspired by her lyrics – bleak assessments of modern life and identity delivered in upbeat synth pop – to acts of suicide, becoming ‘Cyber Ghosts’ to her legend. 

Expressly influenced as much by the story of The Pied Piper of Hamelin as by Oportot’s songs, Nicolás Guzmán’s film presents the digital space of the ‘ALMA system’ as the fluid realm where celebrity is spread, diffracted, misappropriated and infected, and where participants become enthusiastically willing victims on the altar of their own longing for communion with their idol.

A dizzying mix of abstract voiceovers, chatroom conversations, digital disruptions, fashion shoots, apartment sex, Santiago’s modernist cityscape, and tableau-like scenes in which angsty youth drape themselves across furniture or floor, Potential Victim might elicit claims of being incoherent, fragmentary and insubstantial – but those are precisely the qualities of our online existence that it seeks to capture, reflect and refract. 

© Anton Bitel