Teased during Prada’s Spring/Summer 2017 runway show in Milan this past September, “Past Forward” is a fashion film collaboration between Miuccia Prada and filmmaker David O. Russell that follows three female protagonists, Allison Williams, Freida Pinto, and Kuoth Wiel, who lead parallel lives within a futuristic Hitchcock universe. The 18-minute short is stitched together by jump cuts, highlighting themes on love, loss, and mistaken identity to create a mise-en-scène of both traditional and avant-garde narratives. Born out of a conversation between Russell and Mrs. Prada about the nature of time and the peculiarity of self-identification through increasingly fragmented means—i.e. memories, photographs, film, audio recordings, etc.—the project is a thoughtful inquiry on the formation of modern subjectivity: a telling of the lived experiences, both ordinary and at times thrilling, of today’s woman and how she traverses the world in consequence. “Movies are emotion, images are emotion,” says Russell. “Here was the opportunity to make a journey of cinema guided by layers of movie memories, life images, and emotions, with no aim except to create art.”
First premiered at Prada’s Broadway Epicenter in New York and at Hauser Wirth & Schimmel in Los Angeles earlier this week, “Past Forward” is now available to view online today.