In the Dark It’s All a Trick Film, 2020

AN EXPERIMENTAL FASHION FILM INSPIRED BY A DAVID LYNCH CLASSIC

This film is inspired by the creative Neo- Noir work of David Lynch – The Lost Highway 1997. The inspiration for the short film is Freudian psychology theory of the threefold concepts that make up every living individual, and the internal torment one experiences. ID, Ego, Super-ego.

ID – impulsive needs that you’re born with. Ego – connects ID and superego, ego also connects inner and outer worlds Superego – the way you act in society.

Connecting this idea to the field that we are working in – fashion, the torment is mainly between the Ego being the consumerist, material-oriented side & and the Superego being the moral, purer and partially skimmed of the capitalist logic of fashion. The super-Ego is the moralizing part of our mind, the one that comes from our education and rational principles. According to the super-ego we know that fashion in the 21st century is the second most polluting industry in the world yet once we give way for our ego to grow, we give into our irrational oftentimes immoral desires – such as the abstract desire of consumerist culture. Both sides nevertheless – aesthetically biased, manifesting the aesthetic importance of this film.

The Id is us, or so to say the camera itself, the instinctive impulses, that records everything that it sees.

The narrative of the film is abrupt, employing the Jean-Luc Godard inspired jump-cuts that reflect the schizophrenic nature of the film and the psychological journey of the protagonist.

The film commences with a detailed zoom of a peacock’s eye. It is a scene that is disorientating and is as experimental as the nature of this film. There is no desire to accommodate the audience with comfort. It is the depiction of every new beginning – nature. In a Jean- Luc Godard jump-cut motion, the next scene opens up a top view on the beach and a pair of shoes being thrown into the scene to be forgotten in the wet sand – a Peter Lindbergh 1990 “Lolita” type of vision. The camera looks up to a girl strolling along the beach in a beautiful long dress. The dress sways on the sand, along the water softly drifting towards the feet of the protagonist. She is ankle-length submerged in the water by now, completely still in a horizontal long-shot. There is no eye contact with the camera, the model is looking down at her feet. The long- shot, scene by scene gradually depicts the protagonist submerged in water – starting with the ankles, water growing to the knees and ultimately the model is up until the hips in the water – declaring that nature overpowers desire. Yet the actress torments, fights her nature in all of the upcoming scenes.

The model is still on the beach, seated down, in a childish poses with spread legs that radiate naivity. The camera films her from above with some close ups of the hands playing with the sand and the details of the garments that she is wearing. The protagonist plays with the belt of the dress, she swirls her fingers around it, twisting the belt onto the finger. She is anxious and unpretentious. She never looks at the camera. She stands up and the camera focuses on the movements of her feet. The protagonist has changed looks and walks along the shores, time from time kneeling down to collect seashells. Camera takes a close up the shells, each unique and different, as the girl picks them one by one only to throw all of them back into the sea. She is confused.

Next scene jumps into a close-up of a protagonist, laying on her side on the wet sand. The model is eating a peach. She bites into it multiple times and simply chews, in a horizontal close up of her face and décolleté. She looks into the camera, clueless and unaffected by the camera’s presence. She does not yet realize what is looking right back at her.

In another jump-cut motion the scenery changes. Similarly to Leonard Shelby’s memory flashes (the protagonist of Christopher Nolan’s Memento), the scenes jump between in a fanatic, hysteric motion. Now the protagonist, wearing a different look, is walking in the center of a long bridge, towards the end point. The camera naturally follows the mod- el, who starts walking yet escalates shot by shot into an almost frenzy jogging, as if chasing after something that can disappear in any given second. She stops. It is the first time she looks back and straight into the camera. She pauses, she knows she is being surveilled. Yet it is not merely the camera that is surveilling her. The video camera is a video camera for only those watching the final film. For the girl instead, it is her own super-ego glancing right back at her. She is frightened. The scene cuts into an empty bridge, the girl is no longer there. These empty, void of people shots underline the existential nature of this short film.

The protagonist, who was filmed before- hand, takes the camera and lightly throws/ tosses it on the sand, while the camera records the model walking off into the sea. This action means that the ID wins, the im-pulsive nature of an individual takes control as the girl undresses, throws her dress on the sand and walks off into the sea. The scenes cuts into the same landscape, yet void of the girl. It is nature, in it’s simplest form.

*The protagonist leaves the consumerist world piece by piece – starting with the shoes, the items grow in size and power. The looks change, starting with the more elaborate ones to the shorter dresses, with minimal accessories. It is a process of simplification that depicts a move away from consumerism towards null.