Anacronte

Directed by Raúl Koler and Emiliano Sette  |  Review by Moumita Deb

Anacronte is a brilliant capture of a flashback into the exodus of the human race towards an unknown destination, as slow sufferers of their destiny and a benign submission to the malignant fate that broods over their existence, culminating in the final denouement, before being hurled into an abyss of oblivion.

The plot pivots over the theme of how Since the timeless night, on life’s plains, humanity faces the Sorcerers of Evil’s indefeasible designs. Emotionless, yet serving their destiny, they put to the test humanity’s happiness in a struggle that, in short, has each of us as winners and losers, being victims of the chess of life as mere powerless pawns.

Such atrocities become deeply embedded in the minds of naïve victims who ironically fail to realize their futility and succumb to their cruel destiny. Koler and Sette are no strangers to moral iconography as evidenced by their creation of a dark and pungent satire on the falsity of multi-layered human existence constantly at a clash with honesty and integrity.

It was great to see the visions of his imagination be brought to life in such an artistic, and skilled way. The film is the perfect synthesis and a display of a unique combination of the filmmakers’ visual, musical and cathartic elements; all brought to life through a collaboration born out of a mystic world. The director takes a decidedly unusual path from script to screen, but then again, aren’t all created myths equally unusual?

The brilliant background score heightens the mood of sadness and a tensed atmosphere that strongly intensifies the protagonist’s biting loneliness and insecurity amidst the crowd. The director plunges into the macrocosm of life, where all face the same doom but lacks the power to resist, overcast with deep-rooted anguish of being deprived, which eventually gives vent to such atrocious attempts to beget a new life, emerging like a phoenix. The director terrifyingly excels at providing cathartic relief to the viewers in bringing about the salvation of the loner through his constant, horrifying yet symbolic spear- assaults.

This film is relatively free of the gag-inducing, moral-majority-pleasing, family values guff that blights many animated fictions. Preoccupied with a strong vengeance seeking desire, the heart is definitely in the right place, with the only poignant note being the conviction to bounce back from a piteous fall, and the eventual triumph of the powerless over the all-powerful: to be viewed as an indelible lesson of damnation for all humanity in view of the natural order of things. And therein lies the overwhelming success of the film. It’s a gruesomely detailed puppet animation about life’s unspoken miseries. It fuses eloquently with the hell of loneliness in this strange miniature masterpiece. Depressed and small, cowed down, he is numbed and alienated from the society and sinks more and more deeply into his mundane world of devouring loneliness.

The film honestly doesn’t have to exert itself to be strange, although everything about it is unforgettable, skin-crawlingly strange, especially the banal boringness of dull things, painstakingly created in this puppetry universe.
The plot makes it as riveting as any thriller. And the structure brilliantly responds to the phenomenon of the bleak cosmic world itself: flavorless, dull, yet liberating and delicious in its lack of identity.

Its uniqueness is intensified in dealing about the mysterious prison of identity and consciousness, the need to be imprisoned in the vicinity of love, and the sickening pain of unrequited passion that reveals this hope to have been an illusion.

The puppet characters in most other films are sprightlier. They exist mainly to amuse. The typecast character in Anacronte, however, is alarmingly unsettled. His plight makes you think about 21st-century loneliness, despair, and alienation— subjects that would be unpalatable if his characters were not so compassionately scripted and with such biting pathos.

It is as good for its story and message as for its animation. The film is an undebatable snapshot into a relatable awkward and uncertain age which is made unique and engaging through its great script and animation. The director triumphs more in assuaging a subtle connection for the viewer with the animated representation of an apocalyptic universe, which is not easy to achieve when a film’s running time is only fifteen minutes. The animation is extremely impressive, and the whole look of the film is one of the stands out elements of the short film genre.

 

Moumita-Deb

Moumita is a Kolkata based independent filmmaker and film critic. She holds a post- graduation degree in English literature from Jadavpur University. Reading novels of a wide range of authors of all genres from classic to contemporary has always been Moumita’s passion and calling. She also takes a strong liking in playing the Spanish guitar & has participated in quite a few concerts. Moumita has done her certification course in Cinematography, Video Editing and Filmmaking