Director: Jovanka Vuckovic, Annie Clark, Roxanne Benjamin, Karyn Kusama
Starring: A bunch of people.. Canada/USA. 1h 20m
Horror anthologies can be a lot of fun, what could be wrong with a collection of thrilling stories that aim to excite, shock and thrill? Usually there is little to connect the stories apart from a wrap around. But the delight in XX is that it’s a female themed horror anthology, made by women possibly for women..it’s aim is to show that girls can make horror that is just as good if not better than the boys, but instead we have a few short films which seem to revolve around some incredibly boring women and inconsistently moan about motherhood.
Horror is generally seen as a male orientated genre and this hit back was disappointedly weak. Each segment has its moments and there’s absolutely no problem with the direction and production, but if XX is trying to make some kind of statement then it failed to make it clear.
Beginning with some artistic flare from the work of Mexican stop-motion animation artist Sofia Carrillo, who makes the wrap around that consists of a small critter that travels around a run down house slowly putting pieces together to make a child, tits just another peg in the films woman role board, all the characters are mother, caretakers etc. Continue reading XX (2017)
After reading this title, I believe a short Introduction is an well growing up in the 90s I was rudely introduced to stop motion and bizarre animated shorts through the Channel animation on 4. Obviously as a child and young teenager I’ve seen lots of animated films series and feature length films, but nothing could quite prepare me for the onslaught of dark mechanical don’t like creatures from the insipid creative minds of the Quay brothers Paul Berry’s and the claustrophobic social construct of Phil Mulloy.
While it frightened and unnerved me it did also, open my eyes to unlimited dreamscapes and nightmares!? I would sit up late at night transfixed to the mirage of movement and curious situations which eventually started to warp my art, thinking, and most facets of my life. I suppose it was truly influential, but it’s take me this long to get back into that niech groove and present my all time favourite classic animations, mostly from Animation on 4, stop motion shorts and everything else that fits in between.
Continue reading Classic animation (on 4) stop motion and WTF shorts Vol.1
Director: Peter Greenaway. Music: Michael Nyman
Starring. Brian Deacon, Eric Deacon, Andrea Ferreol, Frances Barber UK/Netherlands. 1h 51m.
It’s impossible to mention Greenaway without Nyman, the two work so well together (until their falling out.. ) but it’s noteworthy to mention that this is the first collaboration with cinematographer Sacha Vierny and who he referred to as the most important collaborator, Vierny passed in the 1990s.
The film has lots of subtexts; the first is loss and grieving. Twin zoologists, Oswald and Oliver Deuce are at work studying animal behaviour when their wives are killed in a car tragic accident involving a large white swan which crashes through the windscreen, the eccentric woman who was driving the car, Alba Bewick (Ferreol) survives but has to have her leg amputated. Continue reading A Zed & Two Noughts (1985)
Director Justin Nixon/USA/2016
A short stop motion sci fi story, written and directed by Justin Nixon that tells a warming story about a family of robots living in a desert dystopia. After a tragedy in the family they go to their local “church” to get help but ACCESS DENIED this spurs the family to discover the truth behind dark secret of the faith. On a small budget of $5000 raised by a Crowdfund, Nixon has created an extremely poignant story that displays strong will that doesn’t follow the the crowd and questions dogmatic views. It’s incredibly detailed and what stands out is that this futuristic robotic story is based in a wild west background with a strong theological core.
Rating : 7/10
R – Blackwater Gospel, TARBOY, Invention of Love
Dir: Adam Rosenberg /USA/2009
Link : http://www.mradamrosenberg.com/
An eerie stop motion short from American filmmaker Adam Rosenberg, argued to be very similar to a short called Crooked Rot from David Firth, but as much as it had a similar creepy feeling to it, the message and sentiment is entirely different. The film starts out with an innocent looking mannequin head. Nothing too strange about that. Then a peculiar $1 appears and all hell breaks lose
y personal take on the film is that a person no matter how innocent can become corrupted by money and greed and that in turn it does indeed change a person dramatically. As soon as the money appears “Manny” changes in order to pursue it, the dollar gets ingested and goes up in smoke possibly an indication to how long the wealth lasts. The head is emptied and the mouth silenced, the Manny has now become a slave to the wage, one of the mindless single voiced consumers, as soon as the money is gone the “Manny” changes again, wanting to speak out it gets engulfed in flames.. The poor rarely have a voice..
It’s a cold and unnerving tale that could be interpreted in many ways. This is obviously just my take on it, obviously a great favourite as it’s dark accompanied by uneasy soundtrack and made me think Adam seems to have a lot of black humor about him and an impressive catalogue of work under his belt already, someone to look out for, although don’t expect too much like this, as the style had changed dramatically but still very surreal.