DAVID reviews

6 June 2016

Eyes wide shut.

by Andrew MacGregor


Short Films: “You Are Awake” - 4 mins 28s

Oscillating somewhere between a dream and a nightmare is this eerie short film by Colonel Blimp's Pedro Martín-Calero. Based on the bizarre sleeping plague which has afflicted a Kazakh village since 2013, this unnerving and confounding piece explores a world where taking forty winks produces infinite uncertainty.

A narrator channelling the precision authority of a public broadcast film relates how people succumb to sleep during their waking hours without warning. Is it a pathogen? A spiritual malady? Has our 24/7 society finally broken our bodies? Invasive analysis and cold logic attempt to neatly categorise this phenomenon, but it's clear nothing can unravel its cause or its meaning.

It's a riveting piece of weirdness which plays a fine game of push and pull with the viewer. The arch sound design constantly keeps us on edge, as does Martín-Calero's uncanny imagery: measured, beautifully composed, and unafraid to stray into horror territory on occasion (good luck getting that faceless man out of your head). A strange and thoughtful interpretation of a real-life oddity.


Film Production: Colonel Blimp Ⓟ Ⓦ
Director: Pedro Martin-Calero
Producer: Corin Taylor
Production M'ger: Ellie Britton
Production Ass'nt: Ricardo Reiss
Executive Producer: Paul Weston
Cinematography: Pedro Martin-Calero
Art Department: Jose Tirado
Editor: Sacha Szwarc @ Speade Ⓦ
Post Production: Cheryl Payne @ Finish
Colourist: Julien Biard
Compositor: Kayley Fernandes
Flame: Andy Copping
Sound Designer: Neil Johnson @ Factory Ⓦ
Composer: Olivier Arson
Casting: Kharmel Cochrane / Hannah Simons
Actor: Fredrick Schmidt (Man)
Voiceover: C J Johnson
Written By: Daniel Remón / Joe Rosen / Pedro Martin-Calero
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