2005 Melbourne International Film Festival : Seventeen (2003)

26th July 2005

Director: Hisko Husling

Tagline: A melodramatic coming of age story

Set in a town somewhere in Eastern Europe during the Soviet era, this short follows the story of a young roofer and how he comes into the adult world. One day on the roof he spies a pretty young woman naked who looks his way. He is embarrassed by it and his work mates make fun of him for it.

That night at the fairground he tries to talk to her, but he is too shy and ends up getting drunk instead. Later that night in a drunken haze, he finds the woman and learns what she really does in the town. For some reason he thinks she is being attacked, so he tries to beat up his workmates and then has to flee. That night he has an alcohol-fuelled nightmarish experience that ends with him waking up with a sore head the next day, but none the worse for wear. Life goes on and in time he becomes just like the work mates he once used to despise.

I enjoy a good animated short and I liked the style of this one as it seemed to use pastel for the lines and solid colours. This meant it had some very good blending effects and the colours were very rich and earthy.

The music in the short was also well used, starting off as a gentle tune that set the scene, then getting more intense and faster once things started to get weird.

It was good how the story started out as normal, but then became very dark and surrealistic. I thought the whole thing was a bit melodramatic, but it does match some young people’s experiences with alcohol and doing the things they regret on the path to adulthood.

Rating: 6/10