I’m jett from the oddball foundation and i’d like to welcome you to the oddball screening room! here, you’ll find independent films curated by me (jett), and my interpretations/thoughts that you can agree with or disagree with.
i’m here to interact with filmmakers and film lovers like myself and show you some cool independent films!
let’s chat! i want to hear what you have to say about these films, too! am I right, wrong, or somewhere in the middle? let me know!
grab your popcorn and get ready to enter the screening room!
TW: Blood and Violence
The first film I want to show you and talk about is a powerful film by Jaina Cipriano titled “You Don’t Have to Take Orders from the Moon.” This highly experimental short film quickly envelops you in the world of our protagonist, Cynzia, starting with what nearly feels like an interview format with symbolism mixed in. At this point in the short, you don’t quite know what you’re looking at yet. If you have the time, I recommend giving it another watch to see this bit in the context of the rest of the film, because I truly believe it sets the tone for the remainder.
Almost entirely in black and white, giving an almost other-worldly feeling to the nightscape, the film is visually gorgeous. Specifically, the set design is so intricate and full of little details, and I caught so many more on my second watch. The bedroom has so many moon decorations, including the bedsheets, that I recommend pausing and just taking in that shot of the room to appreciate it. The other characters are relatively bland in comparison to our protagonist, a choice I believe was made on purpose. The way they come and go while Cynzia stays means to me that they are there to tell more about her rather than be characters in their own right. They show us how the outside world sees Cynzia and her universe, and their perspective is one of pity, concern, or frustration.
They tell us indirectly that there is something wrong with her and the world she is guiding us through. Since the director told us here at oddball that the woman is “treading into her own darkness,” we can make the conclusion that Cynzia is struggling with delusions, a perspective that only she (and we) can see.
Generally, the camera is relatively stationary, so when it moves as Cynzia runs and screams at the end, it’s jarring enough so we feel that something serious is happening. Then, also very jarring, the world around her transitions into color, something we have not seen so far in this short film.
Combined with Cynzia’s panic and the rising sun, we can tell she is being forced out of the world she was living in up until this point, which was her delusion. The world around her tells us this is a good thing, regardless of her feelings on the matter. She then ends up in a new bedroom with only one moon- she is now “normal.” She seems content. That is, until her mystery man reappears outside her window, bringing the world back into black and white to Cynzia’s great relief. The way she spoke with this man previously, we can infer that he is part of her delusions, so he has brought her back in, showing us that she isn’t out of the woods yet as the film comes to a close.
I could go on about this masterpiece of a film forever, but for now, I’ll leave you with this. See you next time in the screening room!
jett thorncan be found in an Emerson College film classroom, the dance studio, or snuggled up with their cat. they have dabbled in most every aspect of film, from directing, to writing, to being a production assistant, to editing, and now criticizing.
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