Marcel the Shell with Shoes On (2021)

Self with Shoes On

As I understand it, this was concieved in the breakup of a marriage. The voice and most of the script is by the disappointed wife, and the surrounding framing by the presumably inadequate husband.

The actual events had some videos posted to YouTube, leading to enough fame to carry the film. This is mirrored in the story. The backbone of the narrative is the husband/filmmaker discovering, filming, and not understanding the shell.

I find this particularly poignant, sad, even punishing that this man would reveal himself — and allow being depicted as the dumb one. He’s been ousted by his girl friend in life and film and is looking for a home. Meanwhile, here is this massively appealing honest soul who itself has lost its ‘family’ and mourns through routines.

In a reverse reflexive role, he plays the filmmaker. But he is the subject and probably neither knew it at the time; a deep tragedy made to seem appealing — possibly the best kind of tragedy. I’m not giving it a three because it lacks long form. It is a sequence of episodic skits with no transformation in our souls once it has captured us.

Posted in 2023

Ted’s Evaluation — 2 of 3: Has some interesting elements.


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