Attackazoids! is a short SF film that offers a 7-minute, impressionistic glimpse into a world invaded by an army of giant war machines. Its clear, well-imagined visuals and tight direction go a long way toward suggesting much more than the running time can directly depict on screen.
For example, an atmosphere of fascist domination that director Lonano creates through the use of noir, 1984-like imagery and slogans — along with some excellent parallel advertising material — seems to suggest that there is an undercurrent to the scenario that takes it beyond straight scifi adventure into a sort of metaphorical nightmare state.
And the colossal Attackazoids themselves are very impressive indeed.
The Backbrain recently interviewed director Brian Lonano about it.
“… the real motivation behind “Attackazoids!” was Ray Bradbury’s The Martian Chronicles. I loved the concept of a series of short stories strung together and, well “chronicling” the colonization of Mars by Earth. I always dreamt of remaking the book into a movie but I decided that instead of remaking someone else’s work, I would create my own universe to run around in. My story is also about colonization but done in a more imperialistic way.”
“I am actually ok with the story being simple so I take it as a compliment. A short film I really enjoy is called “Fifty Percent Grey.” It’s a real simple story about a soldier who dies and finds himself in a white void with a TV informing him he is in heaven. It’s just under four minutes and it really showed me that I could tell a story in that amount of time without having to go into too much detail. On a side note, the film got an Oscar Nomination in 2002 for best animated short, so that really inspired me to try and make a simple but memorable film. I definately wanted “Attackazoids!” to be very experimental with its imagery, special effects and story structure.”
“I recently visited [SFX designer Jeff Jenkin's] home in North Carolina and saw the attackazoid in person for the first time. It was no bigger than a G.I. Joe doll.”
“[Attackazoids!] premiered at the Maryland Film Festival, which was such a great time, and we were a finalist at the USA Film Festival’s National Film & Video Competition. Winners from this festival get recognized by the Academy and could be put in the running for the Best Short Film Oscars. So for us to be a finalist in that competition is a big step…”
Read the full interview here.