Anders Morgenthaler | Dánsko, SRN | 2006 | 90 mins.
In the name of Revenge, I curse Porn, which ruined my sister whom I loved so much. Nobody and nothing will stop me in my Godly work. Animated film as a transcription of memory.
Theoreticians of animated fi m like to emphasize the unreal essence of a work created by post-frame recording of static images where everything seen as movement has been created by the great maker, up to the last detail. This demiurgic intention provides further food for reflections on the fictional world, formed by the principles of overstatement, gesture, and shortcut and providing an ideal platform for the examination and realization of the real world. Besides, animated concepts serve the expression of extra-film means (other art disciplines such as literature or music).
In the film Princess by Danish director Anders Morgenthaler, the dimension of memory and intense nostalgia become the obstacle that is not to be acted out. The protagonist August, together with his niece Mia and playful pet Multe, undertakes a distressful journey into the lap of porn, and, what is more, towards his own memories. Importantly, such a journey brings a lot of hardship, spreading to all corners of the soul of the traveler as well as the people and things involved.
The connection of penance, realization and violence can be seen as the ideological frame of this film work. The sibling duo (a prostitute and a missionary) alludes to the archetypal pair Cain – Abel; while the ambiguous delimitation of good and evil is intensified even more. Here, it is not primarily a dramatic principle but an effort to depict reality in its unstable form by means of acute expression. For even the humiliated can stand up to the powers of evil, here represented by the moloch of porn business.
To depict the sharply delineated relationships among the characters, the film authors make use of means bordering on caricature. Besides specifically formed facial features of the individual characters, what is primary is the visual stylization alluding to various schools of animation. The appearance of August's (and, naturally, Christina's) mother refers to the visual style of the classics of American (non-disney) animation; the features of Mia (and Multe) betray aspects of anime; the drawing of the protagonist (and the majority of characters, including the porn mafia) reminds us of the sober style of contemporary, realismbased films.
Princess Christina, sister of August and mother to Mia, takes up an exclusive position in the fi lm. She only appears in acted passages, presenting scenes from the past, exclusively those captured by amateur filmmaker August on his camera. As if in inverted perspective, the photographic record became an equivalent of memories. All the more tormenting as the illusion of credibility grows stronger.
Danish director Anders Morgenthaler is nowadays a world-renowned and well-respected author of animated films. He is one of the founders of the TVAnimation studio, which produces most of Morgenthaler´s films. A tiny plane accident on his way home from the Annecy festival became a turning point in his career. FILM BEFORE FILM SEX AND VIOLENCE dir. Bill Plympton | USA | 1998 | 6 mins