Post-apocalyptic animation

warning: Can a hand-painted animated film convey the turmoil of a notified climate collapse?

Countries is a film writer and director and regular writer for MODERN TIMES.
Published: 2019-12-02

Simone Hooymans (Norway)

In short animation Ras painter Simone Hooymans produce disturbing images. Skyscrapers and entire metropolises are raging and sinking into the ocean like the new Atlantis, while another undulating ocean is populated with torn hands sticking out. There is much symbolism in the many outstretched palms and clenched fists: The fist as a fighting symbol is accompanied by the gentler outstretched hand.

Ras inevitably makes us think of the climate crisis, but it also provokes an inner turmoil.

The sinking of both nature and civilization forms the frame around these symbols. The message is to be found in the interpretation. The Northern Lights in violet and magenta can be interpreted as a cool, transparent allegory for the purgatory. A darker, desolate sequence gives associations to TS Eliot and his Waste Land - an uninhabitable post-war desolation land, equally full of soul torment and inner conflict. This bleak sequence strikes me more than the dramatic, raging avalanche sequences. Abandoned charred rock sails alone through the ether, losing its last trees to perdition.


Ras is about so much. Consultant Stein Ståle Berg of the NFI, who has supported the production with funds, has summed it up as follows: The film examines the power of change in a crisis. Under Hooymans' brush, the collapse is very viable. Massive mountain ranges crackle as red-hot interiors are uncovered and sprawling roots accelerate. Hooymans has chosen to represent man in the form of its intervention, through the architectural and large urban constructions. Nature is deserted, the fauna absent. Plants, water, fire and the massive are the building blocks of the film. The character of Hooymans' previous film work with the use of great contrasts in technique and expression is recognizable. Intricate watercolor painted universes amaze and transform. The dynamic momentum of the constant change drives the pace ahead. The symphony of the elements creates an unstoppable, penetrating sound. Hooymans has managed to capture the relentless relentlessness of the breed.

Illustrations: Simone Hooymans
Illustrations: Simone Hooymans

Ras inevitably makes us…

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