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S(p)lash

by Underwater Dreams

Reviews

This film is a refined vision from Underwater Dreams and one of my most look fowarded to films.. not because I knew anything about it but because Kathleen clearly has vision.
I fear this won't be rewarded as past works like break out film "Jebivetar" or Queer masterpiece "If You See Them" as it is more David Lynchian than David Lynch. It's for people who want to experience as apposed to be entertained.

One of the hardest things to communicate in this competition is atmosphere yet this has a world I can sink in. S(p)lash offers something unique in the run of 48 hours film skits and is an example of what this competition can create.

Although I'm not sure I understood the story of S(p)lash, I was captured and intrigued the entire way through. Lovely shot compositions, great performances and those finger-like peppers made me shudder. One of my highlights was a composite shot of the sea that was one of my favourite VFX shots of the competition so far. This film pulls you into its world and holds you there!

Splatter? Look this was a step too far even for me in terms of genre subversion to actually work as a driver for your narrative film. Maybe a smarter viewer than me can explain what the splash splatter meant but if I need the film to be explained to me then it hasn't worked in a 48 setting.

As waves crash and characters talk of their intrusive thoughts and fears in a cabin retreat, we are privy to some fairly dramatic red herrings of fingers going near very sharp knives and graters.

But you won't see any blood and guts on display here, and even when we get to talk of working in the West Bank in 2013 again the buildup leads to a mere drop in the ocean as the locals are given humanity. I'm all for #FreePalestine but given this was the centrepiece conversation point of your film taking up a good 90 seconds or so of your runtime I couldn't help but see you as using your film for a political statement first and foremost.

Finally you think the team might elevate and get to brass tacs in terms of plot following the initial red herring but instead we're taken on a trademark Lynchian voyage of a woman emerging from the sea, and then a deus ex machina cyclist, a log and a big splash (splatter) finale.

This film did not work for me. It was so disjointed that your story lost me completely and was utterly confusing as to what the point of everything was. I really enjoyed your previous 2 films but want to see strong stories in this competition. I hope that others enjoy it more than I did as it was visually striking at least.

Yeah, I'm not really seeing what this was all about - way too much thinking involved that I can't be bothered applying myself too. A lot of natural sounding chat from the group had in a kind of "Nomadland" feel to it - is this real or scripted? As mentioned above a lot of shots of red herrings that just serve to further confuse but must have a purpose.

Looked pretty cool but not what I expected from seeing the thumbnail and given the genre.

one of my favourites! Did it use all the 48 variables? dunno. don't care.
it did what few 48 films manage, which is cinematic cohesion.
Why does it cut to pictures on the wall in the middle of a scene? dunno, but it felt exactly right as i was watching it.
Like a yorgos lanthimos movie, it feels like a fully formed piece that arrived from another world and I'm kind of uninterested in asking "why".
it was doing its thing and it did that thing at 100%, and every part of it was yummy and provocative. I hope the jury groove with it. I'd love to see this recognized!

I love films with atmosphere. I love subversive films.
I love films that Make you ponder and consider the implications/feelings/ideas presented.
And I love films that leave you confused, musing on what you just watched.

I guess what I can say is I love that the film-makers ripped into the film and committed to their vision. The last two festivals UD have brought us great dialogue and unique visions, so I was expecting more great things.

For me though, this year, I couldn't help but be frustrated as the pieces didn't feel like they fit together in any meaningful way - I rewound the livestream and watched multiple times to see if I missed something. Perhaps theres a key to this film that will unlock it and it is a subversive masterpiece. But until that turns up, I feel the atmosphere and great imagery went nowhere.

Saying that... this will be one I will come back to (hopefully someone can educate me to the meaning in the comments) as I want to love it!

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