Tag Archives: Estonia

[Fantasia 2021] Dreaming About “Strawberry Mansion” and those Fields too…

23 Aug

Strawberry Mansion: A great sci-fi premise with trippy, arthouse execution  | Ars TechnicaBy Ed Sum
(The Vintage Tempest)

Fantasia Film Festival 2021
Screening Online until end of event (Aug 25, 2021)
Tickets can be purchased here.

Writers/Directors Albert Birney and Kentucker Audley may well have been listening to The Beatles song, “Strawberry Fields Forever” when they came up with the story for Strawberry Mansion. There’s an 80s nostalgic quality in this film’s design. Part of it is because it was filmed that way, and the other with the set design. Another layer includes 50s style science fiction elements set against a 80s fantasy in a mostly character driven drama about what makes Arabella Isadora (Penny Fuller) tick.

She’s a widow, and all the dreams she’s catalogued are being audited. In the future, there’s technology which allows people to record their dreams. As for why anyone would want to, the reasons aren’t entirely clear. It’s definitely offered to those who want to look back at their lives. However, I don’t think she’s strapping the Doc Brown (Back to the Future) invention on just so she can collect all those subconscious thoughts. Neither has this film once said she’s using it herself to make sense of her past.

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[Fantasia 2021] Building a “Kratt” to Conquer Boredom

23 Aug

Kratt (2020) - IMDb

By Ed Sum
(The Vintage Tempest)

Fantasia Film Festival 2021
Screening Online until end of event (Aug 25, 2021)
Tickets can be purchased here.

Kratt is one of those types of horror comedies that I can see underperforming because not everyone is familiar with Estonian folklore. Technically, there is no creature to fear. Instead, it’s what the kids fear as they spend a summer without technology, and at grandmother’s house! They can’t run away, but find friends to play with.

Writer/director Rasmus Merivoo crafted a wickedly funny fable which considers what tweens can do when left on their own. They’ll have to create their own entertainment and after making local friends, they find a spell book and make a golem. However, unlike the traditional Jewish servant of lore, who is inherently neutral, answering to their master’s commands, the Kratt will deviate when no further work is asked of it. It’ll turn on their master and kill. 

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The Old Man Movie Isn’t What You Think in its Message to Drink Milk!

27 Aug

By Ed Sum (The Vintage Tempest)

Playing at Fantasia Digital Film Festival 2020 On Demand till Sept 2. Buy your virtual ticket here.

The Republic of Estonia is a country not everyone will be aware of, and their animated film The Old Man Movie (Vanamehe Film) shows the wonky genre material their entertainment industry can churn out. Originally a web-series, this pièce de résistance by Mikk Mägi, Oskar Lehemaa and Peeter Ritso is now a movie. It borders on the surreal for humour and embraces Dada to create a lasting imagery which I will never forget.

Narrative-wise, this film is more comedy than horror. Mart (the youngest), Priidik (middle brother) and Aiido (eldest sister) are unceremoniously dropped off at grandpa’s farm for the Summer. They discover that this elder is a few cards short of a full deck and it’s his eccentricity which really sells this movie.

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