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Thursday, March 6, 2014

Intense Sci-Fi Action in "PostHuman" Recalls Aeon Flux and Heavy Metal Magazine

"POSTHUMAN" (2013)
Genre: Animated Sci-Fi / Action
Length - 5:46
Company: Colliculi Productions
Website: Official

Futuristic hacker Terrence (Ulric Dihle) and his dog Nine help super psychic Kali (Tricia Helfer) attempt to rescue the last living imprisoned test subject of an under-the-radar ESP lab.

The intense violence that follows is sure to test a few of the weaker stomachs out there, but this is the beginning of a war -- and theoretically a video series of animated films.

It's won an incredible number of awards including Best Animated Short at Screamfest 2012 and Best Animation Short from the Arizona Underground Film Festival 2012.

Let's see what all the commotion is about, shall we?

GOOD ANIMATIONS

Animated films are always a tricky sell, because so much rides on them beyond your basic point and shoot style independent project.  If the drawings aren't good enough, or even if they are TOO well done, it can turn off all but the most seasoned anime and comic fans. 

"PostHuman" reminds me of a cross between the old TV show Aeon Flux that used to appear on Liquid Television on MTV and the lurid and hyperactive Heavy Metal comic book magazine.

There's action, blood and nudity, so clearly this is an animated film for adults.

DYSTOPICALLY DELICIOUS

But that leads me to talk about what "PostHuman" does best, which is that it presents a dystopic futuristic society, complete with dirt and grime, undercover happenings and even psychic battles.

From front to back, this little flick has limitless energy oozing off every frame as unnamed antagonists attempt to turn everyday humans into psychic killing machines.

Director Cole Drumb keeps the action fast paced and constant.  Nothing interrupts the frantic pace of Terrence's mission, and yet we never feel any genuine conflict.  The conclusion winds up feeling extremely inevitable as it sets us up for subsequent installments.

OVERALL SCORES:

Writing: 2.5 / 5.  The film is five minutes of uninterrupted action and violence.  The idea is an intriguing one -- the buildup to a psychic war between a secret organization and the psychic monsters they've created -- but the concept wasn't explored.  The storyline needs more meat, and we need to have even a shorthand understanding of the characters for the finale to have a bigger emotional payoff.
Directing: 4 / 5.  Drumb puts on a professional show from the first frame onward, coming up with clever shots and milking the action for all its worth.  Visually, the film is executed flawlessly, but I think the film's extremely short running time made the film somewhat confusing, which keeps this film from scoring 5 in this department.
Editing: 3 / 5.  The movie is SO fast that I had to rewatch it to try and get a better feel for who was who and what exactly was going on.  The pacing felt like it was on "fast forward" the entire time. 
Sound/Music: 4 / 5.  Kid Dropper Sound deserves a shout out here, because the audio sounded fantastic.  The music, by Neill Sanford Livingston, hit the mark and helped express the emotions buried amidst the frenetic pacing.
Acting: 4 / 5.  "PostHuman" features the voice talent of Tricia Helfer (of Battlestar Galactica fame) and Ulric Dihle as Terrence.  Both play their parts perfectly.

Final Grade: 3.5 / 5.

Don't forget to watch "PostHuman" on YouTube by clicking here, and then follow its release on Twitter and Facebook!



Thanks for reading! I'm a screenwriter and script consultant. Most recently, I've worked with LMC Productions and Mad Antz Films in Australia. I helped mold Goodybag Productions' award winning screenplay "The Teacher" and Michael Maguire's feature length script "The Wolfpack", which is still in development.

Check out my blog and let's get in touch!