Lunch with Night of the Living Dicks
The film tackles the question of what toxic masculinity and rape culture are. What’s the audience reaction been like?
So far so good, I think – or to put it another way, maybe people who hate it just haven’t said anything to me! It seems to me that it’s been going down well especially in countries where there’s still more of a macho culture and especially female and queer audiences tend to respond to the Madonna/whore dichotomy that the film rises from.
How did you managed to create this claustrophobic atmosphere, technically?
We had a genius director of photography, Kerttu Hakkarainen. We also did my previous short together, she and I have some sort of brain connection where we don’t have to say a lot to know where we need to go. The decision to do it as a black & white noir dictated the direction and communicated visually with strong light & shadow how the film comments on binary thinking. Also, we played a bit with aspect ratios in terms of when people wear the magic glasses – as the film is about seeing and being seen. Our POV is our reality.
Why is this an important story to tell in today’s society, and why did you choose to do it in this humorous and surreal way?
The world is getting increasingly surreal with information and disinformation and fiction and propaganda and every single thing coming and shouting at you from every screen. For me to deal with something so painful and weird, I needed the film to be emotionally true and grounded, but told in a completely surreal way, as that relates the inner experience. In a film, feelings can manifest as physical beings, and especially horror films are the best for me when they’re a nightmare come true for the main character.
Is there a particular short film that has made a strong impression on you?
This year, I was especially taken by Virpi Suutari’s A People’s Radio – Ballads from a Wooded Country, based on a Finnish radio program. The film really captures the petty obsessions and everyday surrealness of people.
What’s your definition of a good film?
An experience that lets me roam around in the filmmakers’ mind, to get the feeling of this is their personal perception and expression and rhythm of the world.