Chattanooga Film Festival: Zeria (2021)

With a strange and surreal blend of masks, life-size puppets, miniatures and rear projection, writer and director Harry Cleven has created something I’ve never seen before: a post-apocalyptic puppet show.

In the year 2056 and on the eve of his hundredth birthday, Gaspard writes a video letter to the grandson he never met — and the first human born on Mars — Zeria to tell him of what his life was like on Earth.

Belgian actor and director Harry Cleven has created a handoff between humanity on Earth and their movement to Mars that approaches true art throughout, a calming and meditative odyssey on life. Gaspard will never meet Zeria, who will never go to Earth, so it falls to the elderly man to relate the story of how humanity lived on, died on and ultimately ruined the planet.

I can’t really explain this movie with just words, one that uses puppets as humans, humans as puppets, miniature sets, gigantic sets, animation and who knows what else to truly create a world so much unlike our own. It’s really something else in the most astounding kind of way.

You can learn more by reading the official Facebook page.

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