Robots of Brixton (UK-2011; short [approx. 5.35 min.]; dir. Kibwe Tavares)
Check out this arty — and rather timely, given what’s been happening in the UK — little robot drama!
Brixton has degenerated into a disregarded area inhabited by London’s new robot workforce – robots built and designed to carry out all of the tasks which humans are no longer inclined to do. The mechanical population of Brixton has rocketed, resulting in unplanned, cheap and quick additions to the skyline.
The film follows the trials and tribulations of young robots surviving at the sharp end of inner city life, living the predictable existence of a populous hemmed in by poverty, disillusionment and mass unemployment. When the Police invade the one space which the robots can call their own, the fierce and strained relationship between the two sides explodes into an outbreak of violence echoing that of 1981.
Not long ago I was privileged to be able to see director Hillary Yeo’s full animated short film, Godaizer. Below is my review (follow the link to my main site, Undead Backbrain, to read the full thing).
Godaizer (Singapore-2011; short [18:43 min.]; dir. Hillary Yeo)
Godaizer is not the kind of frenetic anime that is all action and noise, certainly during its opening third. In some ways it is more suggestive of Miyazaki’s cinematic style (not so much visually as in general ambiance). Its opening sequence, showing the start of what is obviously another typical day, is slow and contemplative, as the youthful main character, awoken by a bedside clock, looks out upon the morning and the chooks, pushes open rusting gates and then pulls switches to start up the vast repair shop in which he lives. The roof slides back to let in the sun, service gates grind open and lights come on.
Godaizer embraces the dynamics of daikaiju conflict as thoroughly as it exploits the tropes of the human/machine dynamic lying at the heart of the [mecha] genre.
A mecha/daikaiju classic in miniature, Godaizer may be short, but what it lacks in direct narrative complexity it makes up for in attention to suggestive detail.
Read the review.