On Outer Space, Love and Resistance – Short Films

On Outer Space, Love and Resistance was one of the short film programs at the this human world Film Festival.
Seen on: 4.12.2020

Content Note: sexualized violence/rape

The four short films are very different in tone and style, but all of them are special indeed. I’ll be thinking about them all for a while yet.

More about each of the films after the jump.

Just a Guy (2020)
Director: Shoko Hara
Writer: Simon Thummet

Richard Ramirez was a convicted serial killer and rapist. After his conviction, several women started writing to him and pursuing him romantically. This documentary talks to a few of them.

The phenomenon of women going for rapists and serial killers is not unknown, but rarely do you hear the women’s side of the story as directly as you do here, including excerpts from letters they have received from Ramirez himself. The animation style is a little unwieldy and rough, but in a very calculated way. I thought that it fit the overall theme of the documentary perfectly and I keep seeing moments of it. Absolutely excellent.

The poster for the short film showing paper cutouts and playdough figures of women and naked legs in high heels in front of a prison.

All Her Dying Lovers (2020)
Director: Eluned Zoe Aiano, Anna Benner

There is a myth going around Czechia that may or may not be true about a woman who took her own special kind of revenge against the Nazis during World War 2.

I don’t know how much of the story is acutally true, but it is definitely a good story and beautifully contrasted with and completemented by the deceptively fragile animation style. Impressive.

An image from the film showing the drawing of a woman with a knife in her hand.

Ethereality (2019)
Director: Kantarama Gahigiri
Writer: Kantarama Gahigiri

An astronaut who spent 30 years in space comes back to earth. Much like the Rwandan migrants in Switzerland, they wonder where they really belong.

This was the only one of the four films that wasn’t animated. But with the images of the astronaut in their spacesuit all over town, it has a certain dreamlike quality. I liked this image as a metaphor for the sense of displacement that African migrants face in Europe, but the parts that were more directly about them, never quite reached the pull that the astronaut did.

The film poster showing an astronaut in a space suit on earth.

Gravedad (2019)
Director: Matisse Gonzalez
Cast: Adriana Möbius, David Gaviria, Pedro Grossman, Olivia Meyer Montero

Rosa (Adriana Möbius) has a tendency to float off when she is feeling good, and to fall into a deep hole when she is not. Maybe she can find some balance by emulating the people around her?

I really enjoyed Gravedad that I read as a metaphor for neurodiversity. You can try to be like everybody else, and probably be unhappy as you try. Or you can find the beauty of your perspective and your difference and try to share this with the people around you. It was a sweet metaphor and I liked the simple, creative animation style.

The film poster showing a drawing in soft pink on a white background. a woman with a whole lot of babies sits on the ground, holding on to another much smaller woman who appears to be floating away.

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