Pica Towers: Pixar for Sadists

If Wall-E ever took drugs and had a bad trip, this is how I imagine it would turn out. Just a desolate world of cute little machines who are actually crazy and kill each other because there’s nothing else to do in their deserted insane asylum affectionately known as Pica Towers. Watch the short videos. Am I right?

So maybe they’re a little morbid. But they’re brilliant. I loved them. Maybe it’s because of my weird fetish for generally inanimate objects coming to life with human qualities, but I think it’s probably more because of the sheer genius of Marc Craste who can tell a horror story in about three minutes with zero dialogue.

Right from the beginning, you’re emotionally attached to the character (and by “you,” I mean me…maybe I shouldn’t generalize and assume everybody loves animated television sets as much as I do). It just looks like a happy little guy but then the shot zooms out and you see he’s actually wrapped in chains S&M style and is being hoisted into the air and you’re worried for him. Christian Grey would LOVE this if he were an animated TV set. It’s all 50 Shades of Grey meets Saw and pitches to Pixar.

 

Anyway, you quickly realize this is actually a creepy cartoon in a very sinister world. The dull, lack of color really gives you that vibe. If bright colors had been used, it would have been cheesy, but instead you get this totally twisted charm because of the darker, muted colors and shadows that play against the walls. Craste further weaves his tale through the use of buzzing and blinking lights, clattering of chains, gun shots, Alfred Hitchcock-esque Birds fleeing the scene, somber music, etc. NO DIALOGUE. It’s awesome. I think the juxtaposition of the adorable little animated TV sets doing inhumane acts is really what makes it so interesting. I mean, 3 murders happen in the span of about 30 seconds and blood is splattered EVERYWHERE but that’s okay because these little machines did it and not the freakin creepy ass dude from No Country For Old Men. And THAT DOG. I want to adopt him. Never mind the fact that he steals a blind man’s walking stick, leads him to a staircase that he has no chance of actually making it down successfully unless it’s head first (because he’s BLIND), laps up the blood of some stabbed dude, and then chows down on a box of pizza while totally ignoring the dead delivery guy laying next to it.

And one other stroke of genius from Craste: he makes the viewer fill in the blanks and create their own story of what actually happened. He doesn’t assume that the viewer is stupid, which many movies do, and he doesn’t spell out every little detail. This may bug some…those who want to know exactly who killed who and why and how did they do it and what happens next?! But I really enjoyed the mystery, the putting together of the pieces and making sense of this twisted little world. I’m not going to tell you my interpretation, I don’t want to ruin the story if you still haven’t watched it yet. So go do it now and tell me what YOU think.

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