22ND ENCOUNTERS SHORT FILM AND ANIMATION FESTIVAL
ANIMATION 5 - A LOOK INSIDE
A series of animations about medical psychological and emotional aspect of life (hence the title)
I went in without any expectation, and any background about the festival. The shorts were incredible diverse in technique, public, rhythm. Also the festival even gave a copy with the details of each short, which is a bless for future reference and people with short memory for names.
Some of the directors of the shorts were in that particular screening, and were presented before their short started.
- Referencing something as personal as an experience or as intangible as chemical reactions requires certain poetic of the image.
- The autobiographical nature of some of them, even with the voice in off give a personal feeling, like you are being told an anecdote by a friend. I can see why people look to tell this stories, share this kind of experiences some with humor and others just wanting to, maybe at some point, tell others what they wanted to be told while they were experiencing that.
- In a more personal note, it even bothered me how the rhythm of some where delicate, enough to highlight how intimate they where and yet make them entertain enough for an audience, where sided with harsher stories, not bad by themselves but they threw out of the groove.
Now I want to talk about a particular one: Here There by Alexander Stewart.
I consider myself on the more traditional narrative side, just as a preference and yet this one made me tear up a little. It starts just like notes on a sketchbook, detailed notes from a place, and with the time they start to un-draw themselves.
Memories from a place far away and it touched a personal point. Some time ago I read that, whit time, the memory, our memory, works by rounding out shapes, smoothing lines. That is how the round glasses you kind of remember some old teacher wearing were more likely cat-shaped. Memory tends to blur details, like saving storing space by simplifying shapes. And for someone who move from another country, is quite a point to make. By nature humans don't want to forget. I don't want to forget, specially not forget about my cat not when I am away, not after he dies.
Not knowing anything about the short and watching it was making the connections slowly in my head, surprise surprise, details start to fade, but also, the most heartbreaking part was when things started to get color, as a real effort to remember thing, and yet it was an amalgam of color the starting place at the end of the short, just leaving a feeling of some place that is distant and slightly unmemorable.
It still is a roller coaster of emotions that one animated short, and it let me thinking "of course it is, it touched my most recent and personal experience of moving from Colombia". But is this the way these other shorts, about postnatal depression and haunting ticking of time, feel to their particular sensibilities? Maybe this is the reason these personal experiences have to be shared
. (and we go back to the monsters reflection and the mirror)