by Verena Repar
The CGI images created by Verena Repar are immediately striking. Saturated colours and constantly changing images well represent what the director wanted to tell in this precious little Echoes of Grief. At the K3 Film Festival 2023.
One of the most difficult experiences a human being can go through is undoubtedly the processing and overcoming of mourning. Sometimes, however, it is extremely difficult to put into words what one experiences during this difficult time. What if, instead, one tried to give shape, image and colour to all the resulting emotions? Young director Verena Repar tried her hand at such a complex challenge with her animated short film Echoes of Grief, which had its Austrian premiere at the K3 Film Festival 2023, for which Repar also did the graphics for the poster and website.
In the middle of a large expanse of green is a small red house. All seems apparently quiet. Then, suddenly, three glimmering points of light come out of the door. Something unexpected suddenly happens: one of the three glimmers explodes into a thousand pieces. From this moment on, everything changes. The smallest of the glowing points suddenly finds itself in a bare landscape with cold, dark colours. Gradually, numerous rocks crop up, until we find ourselves in a cave. How do we break through the cave walls and free ourselves?
Echoes of Grief tells us in pictures a path that is by no means simple. The path of that small glimmer that through the deepest darkness slowly manages to find a new dimension. Suddenly its light turns red. It takes much, much strength to break down certain obstacles. What awaits us next? The landscape becomes less barren, the colours become warmer, the sense of unease and despair that we felt at the beginning of the journey gradually becomes weaker. Until, finally, a new form of life can be born from the shattered glimmer.
The CGI images created by Verena Repar are immediately striking. Saturated colours and constantly changing images well represent what the director wanted to tell in this precious little Echoes of Grief. Similarly, calm and strongly minimalist music (by the group Kit Cut) contributes to a particularly intimate atmosphere. Everything is constantly changing, nothing stays the same forever. And often, in spite of suffering, there is a need to face certain paths alone, in order to find the longed-for serenity.
Aesthetically meticulous, extremely innovative in its staging and able to deal with complex topics without ever being redundant or banal, Echoes of Grief is a true visual and auditory experience. A little film with a magnetic appeal that first and foremost revealed the great talent of Verena Repar, a multifaceted artist who will certainly give us many new satisfactions in film as well. Following a precise elliptical structure, the journey of the little glimmer ends exactly where it began. Around the little red house, everything seems to have returned to normal, to a new way of understanding life.
Original title: Echoes of Grief
Directed by: Verena Repar
Country/year: Austria / 2023
Running time: 19’
Genre: animation, experimental
Screenplay: Verena Repar
Cinematography: Verena Repar
Produced by: Verena Repar