What movie was that...?

09 December 2009

Skhizein

directed by Jeremy Clapin

An animated movie about a man struck by a meteorite who subsequently finds himself exactly 91 centimeters removed from himself. Sound strange? It is, but is also one of the few truly inspired pieces of film storytelling realized in many years. Jeremy Clapin weaves a mesmerizing and quietly devastating tale about a man who has lost touch with himself and struggles with his own existence. After the cosmic encounter, Henry painstakingly redraws his daily life to adapt to his condition, literally sketching imaginary windows and doors on walls to satisfy his disorientation. Henry sees a therapist and tries to cope, but his futile attempts to realign his self with his self only cause him further despair. The story sinks its claws deeply into your mind, until you see Henry when you lay awake at night. His plight is horrifying indeed, an existential crisis from which there is no escape. Clapin’s direction is spot on and artfully beautiful, mingling with the Primeresque (the Shane Carruth masterpiece) score to create a short film with feature length atmosphere. Hunt it down, buy it if you have to, fellow fans of animation and short films, and behold a film that should have been at least nominated for an Academy Award last year. Seriously, did you see the crap that had the Academy swooning last year? Except for Pixar’s Presto and British short This Way Up (wittily directed by Smith & Foulkes), the line up was mediocre at best (Oktapodi), and trite at the worst (Le Maison En Petit Cubes-ugh!). Why is it that the truly remarkable gets overlooked by the dear old Academy?
Thanks to Shane Acker (director of another inspired animated short titled 9), here it is.
Watch it.

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