Fantasia Festival: Mad God (2021)

Director: Phil Tippett

Running Time: 83 Minutes

A legend in the industry, Phil Tippett is the visual effects wizard behind such iconic films as Star Wars, Jurassic Park, and Robocop. He's also a director, and for 30-years, has been working on a stop-motion animated film which is finally finished.

The feature follows a special agent, introduced within a suspended container being lowered down an ominous shaft. Passing many ruins depicting the passage of time, the pod eventually touches down onto land, where the occupant emerges with map in hand to complete a mission. The decaying landscape is home to all kinds of horrors, none deterring the hero through their path.

Utilising impressive stop-motion effects, Tippett grants life to ingenious and disturbing ideas unlike anything seen before. Set to an unsettling score, this wordless journey through a nightmarish world is a unique experience, as the visuals alone deliver the narrative. It's a mightily impressive creation, although there may not be enough to latch onto and keeps ones attention from waning, as this stunning visual achievement can feel more like an overlong practical showcase. This experimental piece of work won't be for everybody, though it's undeniably a labour of love which should be rejoiced for now being complete.

Mad God had its North American premiere at Fantasia Festival 2021, and will play again on 24th August.