Three Imaginary Girls

Seattle's Indie-Pop Press – Music Reviews, Film Reviews, and Big Fun

How many different uses could one room house? This premise was tested in the opening film of Antologia Polski: 50 Years of Polish Animation, demonstrating Poland's bizarre, somewhat dark, avant-garde artistic outlet through 45 minutes of animated film shorts.

In the first feature titled Tango, we see a room containing a crib, table and chairs, a bed, and an armoire, which will remain stable. A little boy climbs through the window to retrieve a wayward ball who then climbs back out–but his action is looped. Soon, a whole host of characters, numbering around 20, carrying out different daily routines are looped over and over again to create a seeming dance. Their acts are independent of each other, and half the fun was waiting to see if any would overlap each other. 

In particular, the bed was an interesting focal point. First added to the mix is a couple who barely pull each other's clothing off to have a quick moment. Their heated tryst is looped, while a two other loops are added–a man scolding his dog on the bed and a mother changing a baby's diaper. The gasp factor is added when an elderly woman lays to rest right on the very spot the two lovers have been. As their repeated actions become more frenetic, you begin to wonder if we'll be watching sex occur on top of a sleeping woman with a baby being changed two feet away!

These particular themes of repetition, satire, frank nudity and/or sex, and skewing what we perceive as reality were continued through the other cartoons. They mainly used stop-animation with real pictures or objects, rather than drawn. One darker, more avant cartoon with half man-half creature characters may very well have been an influence on David Lynch. 

The main element the films had in common, however, was an evaluation of humanity.