Film Scratches focuses on the world of experimental and avant-garde film, especially as practiced by individual artists. It features a mixture of reviews, interviews, and essays.
A Review by David Finkelstein.
In saVer, an eight minute stop motion animation by Simon Gerbaud, a French artist who lives in Mexico, the artist reveals all the materials that make up ordinary objects and tools by slowly pulverizing and deconstructing them, until they disappear into a pile of dust. The animation technique makes the objects seem to wither away as if by magic. He generally makes the objects disappear along a pathway, as if they are being burned by a slow moving fire or gradually eaten by acid. The result is a mesmerizing peek inside of familiar things.
The wheels and ribs inside of a hair dryer look like bones. As a hollow plastic toy cow melts away, it takes on strange, blobby abstract shapes, on its way to vanishing. The final object, and the only organic one, is a ram’s skull, and the interior of the bone is an amazing structure of cavities and chambers, which slowly becomes a pile of white bone dust.
Gerbaud provides entertaining variety within this simple idea, by playing the clips both forwards and backwards, making the objects alternately appear and disappear. By making some objects, such as a wooden chair, disappear along a flat plane, he is able to create an illusion that the object is passing through a wall. The soundtrack of the film is made from the sound of blowing wind, evoking a destructive force.
This idea, easy to understand and beautifully realized, is quite popular online and in festivals. saVer appeals to the child inside all of us, a child whose first impulse, upon seeing any interesting new object, is to take it apart and see what it’s made of.