Saturday, July 16, 2005

Film — Innocence

Deep in wooded country, there is a school (curriculum = biology and dance, from what we see), a hybrid of Gormenghast and a girls-only version of Ohtori Junior school (Shoujo kakumei Utena: Adolescence mokushiroku); with five houses, of seven girls. New arrivals are delivered in a coffin; and each of the others then hands down their rainbow-coded hair ribbons, red for the youngest. Strange rituals punctuate each year — the choosing of a blue-ribbon girl to leave; the nightly departure of the violet ribbon girls from their dormitories; and there are rumours of strange punishments, especially for attempted escape.

Slowly some of the hidden secrets are revealed, but not all, before we follow the underground route of graduation.

Lushly photographed, atmospheric, and very, very French — heavier on symbolism than pragmatics, and with more young girls clad only in white cotton knickers (and school uniform panty shots) than a fan-service anime. Overall — possibly there's less to it than meets the eye.

No comments :