Love science fiction? Watch this.
The Mysterious Explorations of Jasper Morello is an amazing, award-winning short animated film which has been nominated for an Oscar and a BAFTA award. The silhouette-style science fiction animation has been developed by director Anthony Lucas, and the story has been inspired by Edgar Alan Poe and Jules Verne. What a combination!
Quiet Earth gives a synopsis:
In the frontier city of Carpathia, Jasper Morello discovers that his former adversary Doctor Claude Belgon has returned from the grave. When Claude reveals that he knows the location of the ancient city of Alto Mea where the secrets of life have been discovered, Jasper cannot resist the temptation to bring his own dead wife Amelia back. But they are captured by Armand Forgette, leader of the radical Horizontalist anti-technology movement, who is determined to reanimate his terrorist father Vasco. As lightning energises the arcane machineries of life in the floating castle of Alto Mea, Jasper must choose between having his beloved restored or seeing the government of Gothia destroyed. Set in a world of iron dirigibles and steam powered computers, this gothic horror mystery tells the story of Jasper Morello, a disgraced aerial navigator who flees his Plague-ridden home on a desperate voyage to redeem himself.
The whole film goes for 26 minutes. A great example of steampunk. I’m impressed by how simple animation, silhouette black on white, can evoke such a strong atmosphere and setting. All those dark, heavy machines flying around reminded me of the black hawk helicopters which have been training over my house in the dark without lights. Shiver.
4 thoughts on “The Mysterious Explorations of Jasper Morello”
This is great – it was one of the short films from either last years (or maybe even the year before that my memory is shot) Short Film Festival or Animation Festival at ACME and we had planned on going in to see it but did not get there as something came up but this was one of the films that motivated us to think about going to start with.
Excuse my spelling of ACMI my brain must have been thinking we were in a cartoon
Oh man… I LOVE this. It is such a beautiful and dark film. It is so full of mood. This has been in my iTunes library since back when it was offered for free.
I’m still shocked that something can be so blatantly influenced by both Poe and Verne, and yet go on to create something so unique and different all its own.
This one pulls you in quickly… and keeps you there until well after it is finished.
Thanks for the comments, Dawn and Sean.
I could watch this one many times over. Yes, Sean, isn’t the mood delicious. And the details of all the machinery makes me want to run to the museum.