Edmond won the BAFTA Short Animation Award in 2016, which is both surprising and completely not. The film is at once brilliant and incredibly obscure. That should in no way be taken as a criticism; the film might not be upfront with its meaning but Edmond produces an expansive world which stimulates introspection. Nina Gantz builds an odd but emotionally honest world that is quite something to experience.

The film is visually striking; the combination of felt stop-motion animation with computerised animation creates a charming texture while offering an unsettling, heightened level of emotions through the faces of the characters. The style brings to mind Anomalisa even if, in fact, Edmond is even more bizarre and opaque than Charlie Kaufman’s extraordinary film. The two films are also united by the idiosyncrasy of their worldviews. Edmond, our helpless Kaufmanesque protagonist, is utterly unable to handle his intense feelings, desires, and responsibilities to the point that he retreats into himself.

The structure of the narrative is absolutely dreamlike and floats — or, more literally, falls — from one mystifying scenario to another where trace elements of the film’s main themes – identity, desire, consumption – linger to connect them. Each time the viewer is shifted from one environment to another, backwards in time, where they must quickly digest all that they can in order to keep up with Gantz’s spiralling, introverted, but nevertheless remarkable film.

Edmond will leave a deep and lasting impression on its viewers and is absolutely worth revisiting many times over in order to grasp its wonderful oddness. It is fair to say that Gantz is a real talent in the making and we should all look forward to her future projects. In the meantime we should all enjoy this spectacular animated film.

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INFORMATION

DIRECTOR: Nina Gantz

WRITER: Nina Gantz

SYNOPSIS: Sat by a lake at a crossroad in his life, Edmond must confront his past if he is able to make sense of his future.