Blind faith in the reality of an outside world pushes Cocolors’ protagonists ahead in a mission to see what they’ve been told that they cannot. Toshihisa Yokoshima’s animated gem constructs a dystopia where children still act like kids despite their full-body protective gear, and the frailness their society’s inhabitants have inherited. Living underground after a natural disaster, Aki tries to bring hope to himself and everyone around him, but his words fall flat. His friend, Fuyu (re)invents the traditional Japanese art of woodblock printing. He is missing just one special ink color to complete his piece. Alas, it only exists “out there”.
Fatalism is pit against naive optimism in a toon shaded digital animation world (toon shading creates flat color areas – similar to woodblock printing techniques – instead of rendering objects with 3D volume). Set to a lovely score by Abe Ryudai and Hirose Kiyoshi, Cocolors premiered in Japan as a multimedia performance where live voice actors and music accompanied the film. Worth noting is that the Kamikaze Douga animation studio’s “Gasoline Mask Project” website gives intricate details about the symbolism of the film, and how Japanese language can have layered meanings. The title itself is a play on the word kokoro (heart). Indeed, as Fuyu and Aki learn, sometimes life’s true color is in our hearts.
Cocolors shares the themes of isolation and the hope of the beyond with Cloud Yang’s Valley of White Birds (China), and Park Hyemi’s Scarecrow Island (South Korea), both completing the program with Toshihisa Yokoshima’s film.
The animated shorts program will be screened in the presence of Toshihisa Yokoshima and Park Hyemi.
Not to be missed!
JS De Seve Theatre (Concordia), July 29th, 2017 at 4:15 pm.