Materica is a solemn tale of a future where the unbalanced tipping point of gender-social ideals leans favorably on the side of female-bodied beings. The official synopsis explains: In the future a dictatorship of women rules the world and men are remains of a forgotten time. The young woman Minou follows her regime until she gets in contact with the prisoner Noah. She starts to think about the regime, the men and begins a rebellion against the dictatorship.
The German short film intelligently uses language to convey points of view relevant to current societies. When a man back talks to a female soldier he informs "you are worse than Nazis". She adds "worse than men?" after which she laughs in a macabre manner. The same character encounters another male prisoner and informs him that the process on which he will embark after being captured will be about "give instead of taking". Talk about important feminist, anti-rape slogans.
Interestingly, the German background and language adds anguish with social resonance, and the video game and hyper-violent style of cinematography through the beginning scenes is telling of the social acceptance of gore and, yes, violence.
Overall the short is strong. As it unravels it leaves something very important up to the audience. With its lead heroine questioning the system, the thesis could be understood as being that women are not strong enough to battle men due to their emotional capacities, or women are better than man because of said emotional capacities. The short film halts before it reveals its answer.
That fact may be a huge task left to the viewer, but the short does convey through the heroine that violence, and an extreme opposite society, would not solve anything and essentially lead us right back where we began.
Materica is playing at the [[DC Independent Film Festival]] and screen on Sunday, February 23rd, in the 2:14-5PM block. Tickets are $12.
Music: Austra's Olympia : KENN's We Killed KENN : VV Brown's Samson & Delilah : Sammy Crawford's Reality Sets In : Melanie C's Stages : Madonna's MDNA : Nelly Furtado's Spirit Indestructible : CocoRosie's "We Are On Fire" : Stephan Nance's A Troubled Piece of Fruit
Stand Up: Kevin J Thornton