Cemetary @ RIDM

Trailer: https://cineuropa.org/en/video/376323/rdID/374902/

This is a totally low key documentary about life, death and immortality with eye bulging visuals.

You have to be open minded while watching this film as it not your typical one with a beginning, middle and end. Rather it is a voyage. A voyage on which you are led/accompanied by crystal clear pictures, haunting sounds of the jungle and no dialogue. You are expected to figure things out for yourself. And what you get out of Cemetary, directed by Spanish native Carlos Casas, will probably different from the person sitting next to you.

It is an 85 minute film comprised of four distinct parts. Each part is very differnt from that which came before and after it. Part two will feel like something from an action film while part three references experimental film.

What links it all is the crystalline visuals. On par with what we have seen from works from Animal Planet or National Geographic. Bravo to director of photography Benjamin Echazarreta. They help tell the tale as there is no dialogue of the language variety. There is plenty of sounds, though. All supplied by nature or music. Nature gives us the sounds of the jungle. Sounds from the titular elephant and from monkeys, birds and the trees. As well there is Mother Nature providing us with thunder and lightning along with rain fall on trees and leaves.

The story is of the last elephant. Being readied for its last journey. The journey to the fabled elephant cemetary. Readied by its human. Then four poachers arrive. They are on a search for the last elephant. Wanting to capture the big prize. They follow the tracks of the elephant on its voyage. Hunting for it through the depths of the Sri Lankan jungle. Their hunt goes wrong. How we don’t really know. But it does. The elephant arrives at the cemetary and passes on to the next world…

All this is told to us in a very visual and sonic way. We are asked to dig deep within ourselves to follow along. If you do it is an almost mystical experience you are rewarded with. Not your typical film at all.

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