Lucid

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A subconscious adventure both intriguing and disorientating strikes a man who is poisoned by the monotony of his day job. In his lucid dream he desperately travels far and in vain to flee resisting and haunting relics of his disappointing conscious.

Not a single word is spoken audibly throughout the 10 minutes of Lucid, but, thankfully, there’s good reason for that. Lucid excels as a visual experience: its camerawork, direction and colours are of the kind of calibre that allows what’s happening within the frame, void of words, to speak for itself. Lucid has great flow to it, thanks to confidence and imagination with the camera concerning its positions and movement by the director Jamie Romp. Angles such as a car mirror help the sense of stress and desperation that the character is going through to transcend to the audience without the need for any sound apart from the hum of the engine. Other visual highlights include large, long-distanced panoramic shots of the filming location that add a sense that the detail and scale of the dream-world Romp wants to simulate has really been thought through.

Setting foot with a very impressive cinematographic presence, I can’t personally help but feel that the journey could have been helped by a soundtrack: not necessarily elaborate, but sinister and ambient, although such a preference is arbitrarily personal. Some quiet, low octave, minor piano notes fall like raindrops onto the final scene, arguably the most ambiguous, which takes place waterborne. We are given teasers of the scene in the first few moments of the film, which sets the bar of tension high from the start. It’s a pleasure to watch the calm, almost too calm, stagnant workplace environment the character is trapped in gradually spiral into something more hectic.

Lucid remains a strong, watertight production after facing scorn. It’s a pleasure to watch: exciting, coherent, and a difficult concept to pull off well. Then again, it was all a dream.

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