Seated beside three other contestants, Charles attempts to guess a name. To his left is Dick Van Dyke who gives him the hint “Travolta.” He thinks for a moment, but he’s too slow. The host, Superego, hits the buzzer, and when Charles rebels, a green, slimy worm shoots out of Superego’s mouth. Hanging above his tongue, it emits guttural noises as Superego says, “Don’t argue.”
Subconscious Password is full of antics such as these. Through its stretchy 3D animation, characters contort, sneeze on the screen, and melt into new characters. Further experimentation can be seen in the beginning of the short, in which real people are stop-motion animated.
In the 11-minute short, Charles is approached by an old friend, but he can’t remember his name. We’re pulled into his psyche and watch his struggle to find the answer. Along the way, we meet icons from his life and they teach us about him.
The symbolism is thought-provoking in this writer’s view, but while the ideas for the animation are creative, the execution can be jarring. Viewers who have a sensitive stomach may be turned off by the contortions and sound effects. Subconscious Password combines psychology, pop culture references, and an everyday social situation in a short that asks us to reflect on what makes us tick. Viewers who enjoy references to Freud or experimental animation would enjoy this film.
Run time: 11 Minutes
Chris Landreth as Charles
Don McKellar as Superego
Ron Pardo as The Announcer and Dick Van Dyke
Patrice Goodman as Yoko Ono
Ray Landry as William S. Burroughs
Tony Daniels as James Joyce and H. P. Lovecraft
Athena Karkanis as The Babysitter
Nanci Pach as Ayn Rand
Kedar as Sammy Davis Jr.
Denise Oliver as The Virgin Mary
Dwayne Hill as Salvador Dali
John R. Dilworth as himself.
Director/Writer: Chris Landreth
Producers: Marcy Page and Mark Smith
Music: Daniel Janke
Animation Direction and Layout: Sean Craig
For more information on this film and how to see it, please view the OVID.tv webpage for SUBCONSCIOUS PASSWORD.
Images courtesy of OVID.tv
About the Author: Jamal H. Goodwin Jr.
Grammar, prose style, fiction, nonfiction: Jamal does it all. When he's not jogging or reading Daredevil, he's writing stories with a focus on character and elegant language. He’s written reviews for Philadelphia Stories and has fiction published by Spillwords press. Check out a sample of his work at thefictionwriter.blog website.