Festival Juries Unanimous for "Tram"
by Luk Menten
The seven-minute cartoon Tram by the famous animation artist Michaela Pavlátová evokes the erotic dreams of a female tramway driver. The controlling of the tram packed with male passengers, the punching of the tickets in the machine and the button for opening and closing the doors, become sex symbols in the imagination of the driver. The tram ride changes in a surreal and phallic delirium, pushed by obsessive rhythms and music. Or, as our FIPRESCI Jury formulated in our presentation speech for the ceremony on stage in the Annecy Bonlieu Theatre: Tram is “a film which through masterful use of filmic rhythm, form and music, lets us share in something usually hidden: a woman’s secret sexual longings”. Needless to say that Prague-born Pavlátová treats her subject with a lot of humor and prefers symbols rather than sexual explicity. The result is an hilarious viewing experience.
Asked about the making of her cartoon, Michaela Pavlátová, explained to me as follows: “The French production company Sacrebleu had the idea to make a feature consisting of several short animation films to be made by women about women’s sexual fantasies. I was one of the filmmakers who wanted to take part. The project is still in the beginning, due to lack of financing. But the producers let me already do my part of the film so that it also can be used as a pilot for the whole film. Tram is a fifty-fifty co-production between Sacrebleu in France and Negativ Film in the Czech Republic. I did everything myself except the music. That means: idea, script, story board, animation direction and design. I think my part in the future film will not be the most erotic. It will rather look innocent compared with the other shorts, because my film has humor in it, while as I understand, the other 7, 8 or 9 participating woman animators are telling an erotic story that is to be taken seriously”.
Edited by Steven Yates
© FIPRESCI 2012