The Clown (Le Queloune)

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A zombie is Christ-like in a way, both are resurrected, both encourage the consumption of flesh and crucially both are fictional. Has anyone ever actually seen a zombie and Jesus in the same room? Nevertheless the similarities seem to end there, as our society becomes increasingly secular and Jesus fans dwindle, the humble zombie is flourishing in the franticly paced digital age. User-friendly software’s such as Abode After Effects, Smoke and Vision Lab have stimulated this recent revival in the Zombie genre (Pun completely intended). From budding film students to tech savvy adolescents, the toothless grins of the undead grace YouTube pages no matter where the cursor falls. Unfortunately, the majority of these grizzly tales are nerdy romps through charted territory, where the perverse evil that defined the genre is drowned in lashings of mind numbing gore, guns and questionable prosthetics.?Occasionally the odd cult piece has captured the mainstreams attention, such as the Lincoln University promotional bloodbath, the brain-infant of BA student Tim Nicholls, although this is a rare nugget in a colossal clump of hogwash.

Le Queloune or The Clown to us Arcadian dwellers isn’t a golden nugget. In fact, it’s a gorilla-sized boulder of dazzling diamond that refracts the sunset to produce a new colour, know as Lambmon. Its autodidact director Patrick Boivin has introduced an intriguing angle to our blooming zombie fetish; the zombie’s perspective. A relentless YouTube user, Boivin has uploaded 220 videos, his longest to date is Le Queloune at eleven minutes. Boivin’s Z flick fluctuates from whimsical to sinister with seamless ease. The central character is a children’s clown stirred from the grave by Coca Cola and Mentos, and if that’s not convincing enough premise to view this one, then paperwork and petroleum prices have beaten your inner-child beyond recognition. The mangled clown, played by rubbery-cheeked Domnique Pinon star of Micmacs and Delicatessen, escapes his coffin, miffed and puzzled with a throat full of decomposing larynx. In his search for a thirst quenching beverage he enters a house, accidentally murders its proprietor, performs amateur plastic surgery and sizzles up human flesh in the kitchen, with a few shallots and a sprinkling of black paper.

Pinon is a masterful director, who manages to conjure a fanciful yet bloodcurdling tone that tantalises the pallet. Le Queloune is a refreshing short, which manages to avoid the clichés of the youtube zombie phenomena. It’s riddled with nostalgic touches that will satisfy the survivors of Braindead and Dawn of The Dead, yet its subtle thoughtfulness is ultimately it’s greatest asset.

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