Image copyright © by Marcus Trahan

The Aerial

(La Antena, Argentina, 2007)

A movie that is unlike anything I’ve ever seen is occasion for great joy for me. And I guarantee that you’ve never seen anything like this one.

Having said that, there are several movies it reminded me of, in one way or another. First there is Terry Gilliam’s Brazil, with its 1940s and ‘50s machines. Then there is The Triplets of Belleville for its nutty plot. For the black and white photography and image processing, I recalled Sky Captain and the World of Tomorrow. And don’t forget Salvador Dali’s and Luis Buñuel’s Un Chien Andalou, for some oddly disturbing imagery. But in the end, this thing is a world unto itself.

In a city where everyone’s voice has been taken away, the only person who can sing is The Voice, a woman who wears a hood and may not have a face. Her son has no eyes. He can talk, but his mother warns him not to speak to anyone else for fear they will do him harm. Next door is little Ana, whose father and grandfather repair TVs. They all get involved in a plot to return people’s voices, but the peril they face is that an evil TV exec wants to take not just the voices, but the words.

People are able to speak without sign language, since their words appear in the air above them, like dialogue bubbles in a comic book. What appears to be snow is constantly drifting over everything, but it may be feathers, or even ash from a giant cigar. All anyone eats are some sort of cookie that comes in a cereal box labeled TV Food.

… and that doesn’t even begin to describe the stunning visuals in this movie. The invention is endless and delightful … to me. It’s clear that this is not a film for everyone. But if you enjoy inspired foolishness and visual flair unlike anything you’ve ever seen before, catch this one before it disappears from Netflix.