Oh, Rapunzel

Cecelia Condit

1996, 35:00 minutes, colour, English


Oh, Rapunzel is a fairy tale wrapped around a documentary. Set on the grounds of a decaying estate in Philadelphia, the video documents the life of 80 year old Annie Lloyd Condit, a descendant of what was once one of the great families of Pennsylvania and mother of video artist Cecilia Condit. Annie Lloyd Condit was for some years a virtual prisoner in her own home where she lived with a daughter, son-in-law and their children. Her story is told through both documentary footage and scenes from the fairy tale Rapunzel. Revising the classic tale and dumping the prince, Cecelia Condit and her collaborator Dick Blau restage the old woman's life, giving it a happy ending... which comes true.
Oh Rapunzel addresses many provocative issues: from questions of love to problems of money, from the effects of childhood trauma to the reasons why children abuse their elders.

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Critical Writing

Lost in the Badlands
by Kerrie Welsh.
Overcoming the Family Script
by Kelly Mink. Afterimage, Jan 1998, v. 25, no. 4. Rochester: Visual Studies Workshop Press, 1998.