Anachronic

A retired man experiences strange surreal events at his apartment.

Genre: Horror

Length: 14:56

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2 out of 5 stars

Producer/s : Guilherme W. Machado, Pedro Bonin

Director/s : Guilherme W. Machado, 

Writer/s : Guilherme W. Machado, 

Actor/s : Renato Santa Catharina, Denise Franzen

 

Let's end it now

Anachronic is a dark night of a middle-aged man’s soul. Not much happens. Slowly. Brief hope flares when the camera follows him into the kitchen, and when it turns the corner it’s not the man there but a woman, and when she exits, she’s the man again. But after that point, with another eleven minutes left, nothing surprises.

Let’s not be too harsh, as Machado is a young filmmaker (23) learning his craft. There’s no doubting his ambition, or the sheer hard work that goes into any film. And Samuel Beckett fans may love this kind of event vacuum.

Here’s a masked figure in the mirror creeping up with a knife. Cue cutaway to a whole minute of the man bringing in some shopping through an unlit hallway. Spooky nebulous music for another minute as he sits on the sofa with nothing but another reflection to divert us, this one static and not even with a knife.  An eternity on the balcony watching a woman pass below. As an exercise in denying film’s ability to compress time, this works well.

A glass falls from nowhere, as if we haven’t yet got the message that the place, or his mind, is haunted. Oh look, there’s the woman again. She’s laughing. Oh no, she’s crying. Now a mad laugh.

Sadly, the plod of clichés portraying insufferable grief fails to draw us in. Is it resolved? Here’s the balcony in sunlight, birds are singing. All’s well then.

My theory is, his wife threw herself off the balcony out of boredom, having lost the will to live. And I realise, Anachronic is in fact a masterful exercise in making us empathise with her ennui. It wasn’t about the man’s state of mind at all.

[No screener available]

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