Directed by: #ChrisFriend
Written by: #ChrisFriend
Cyberpunk. Neon colours. Synth-pop. 80’s visuals. Geneva Jacuzzi’s Casket is a maelstrom of colour, science-fiction motifs and alien graphics, paired with two of American musician Geneva Jacuzzi’s unusual synth melodies. Although it is dynamic and experimental, Geneva Jacuzzi’s Casket doesn’t quite hit all the right notes.
Watching Chris Friend’s film feels as though you have been sucked into a 1980s computer game à la Disney’s Tron. The characters – all played by Geneva Jacuzzi wearing a variety of fabulous costumes and outlandish make-up – appear on the screen, followed by the white font in the corner detailing character name and location, like a Top Trumps card. The visuals and the character introductions vaguely promise a linear storyline, but these promises are only trampled on by the lightyear-speed pace that we rattle through each event. However, although this film succeeds at confusion in a messy attempt at a storyline, it triumphs as an experimental piece. Mirrored holographs of Geneva Jacuzzi in hooded costumes lure the audience in. The viewer traverses across worlds painted in computer graphics and is launched across a cyberpunk space. Amidst all the rough edges of the cyberpunk aesthetic, this is a genuinely visually beautiful watch.
Experimental piece or not, Geneva Jacuzzi’s Casket functions best as a music video for two of her songs, Casket and Technophelia. Her soft synth songs call back to retro times, but they have a fresh modern twist. It is evident that Jacuzzi is a very talented musician and performer, and the film’s aim seems to be to showcase Geneva Jacuzzi’s art and talents, from her multiple starring roles and her songs which make up the soundtrack. The music is deeply enchanting and drags you into an eclectic dream space alongside Jacuzzi and her many personas. Jacuzzi has an immensely watchable stage presence, but the film could be mistaken for a talent reel.
From a decapitated head singing in a bag, to an alien statue shattering on a foreign world, there’s a chaotic genius amid the confusion. Technically impressive and dynamically experimental, the images come from a great deal of sources. From antique anatomy images to designs more commonly found in 80s computer games, there’s a wealth of imagination reverberating throughout the entire piece. Unfortunately, Geneva Jacuzzi’s Casket boils down to dynamic, acid-coloured fun rolling in front of your eyes at an energetic pace. What it’s trying to say, however, is unclear.