Oddsac, the “Animal Collective movie,” is really horrifying. As in, it’s like, really scary! There are scenes in the just over 50-minute piece (I’ll call it that for lack of a better word) that had me shuddering.
Everyone in the audience last night at the Crosby Hotel in SoHo appeared to be squeamish. The faces in the crowd were as turned up and twisted as my own.
There is no story line, no narrative arc, in Oddsac, which was created by Animal Collective and Danny Perez. The frightfulness you feel comes from eye and ear stimulation. There is one scene at the end which has a pretty clear cut subject matter- a Nosferatu creature lurks in the woods while a family cooks marshmallows over a campfire and then, you guessed it, attacks them.
But what Oddsac lacks in context, continuity and structure, it makes up for in sheer shock value aided by disorienting insanity.
My film going partner was irritated by the piece: “Who’s going to watch that?” “Why make something that nobody will want to see?” But that wasn’t the point.
Avant-garde or experimental art, and i’d like to think art in general, is about the artists necessity to create for themselves, and not about creating something to be consumed by others. Had Animal Collective and Perez made something for the fans, it would have been a wholly different piece.
I don’t think Oddsac is something that people will want to watch again and again, though Perez told the Village Voice that he hopes they will. Animal Collective fans and experimental types will be turned on, surely, but this is not a “fun” music movie. Sections of the film were just psychedelic images, the swirly colors you see behind your eyes when you’re on drugs. (By the way, don’t watch this on drugs, you WILL freak out.)
Perez also told the Voice what he thinks Oddsac does: “It’s a hodge-podge approach that reflects the level of cultural saturation we’re in in the world.”
So, if we live in a confusing hodgepodge of a time, NOT making sense of it is the answer? It’s an interesting and very artsy perspective.
I’m glad I experienced Oddsac, but I’m not sure I can go for it again.
DVD is out June 29.