The Death of an Insect

Hannes Vartiainen, Pekka Veikkolainen, Finland, 2010, color, 35mm, 7'
Synopsis

In a lifeless urban landscape where time itself has stopped its crawl, a mad ballet is commencing and a newly hatched butterfly is about to die. This tragic story was created using dead insects gathered from forgotten attics and tool sheds, between window panes and spiders' webs. It combines a number of animation techniques, from classic stop-motion animation to animated 3-D models that have been scanned with x-rays. No one would give these a second glance, until they found their way into the viewfinder of Finnish directing duo Hannes Vartiainen and Pekka Veikkolainen. In their film, the creatures float, seemingly aimlessly, around the town, before finally flying off to the moon. It is only in close-up that we see how ravaged they are. It turns out that an insect with a vague shape can transform into a symmetrical pattern or an attractive strand of DNA. The little dead animals are lifelike and abstract at the same time. The directors' last film, Hanasaari A, was an experimental documentary about the demolition of a power plant: an old industrial landscape making way for new residential developments.

First Hand
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