Featured Film: Elliot (2017)

directed by Craig Jacobson
runtime: 70 mins
I’ll admit, the film’s title is what piqued my curiosity, having been named Elliot my whole life and all. It’s not so common that you hear it every day.  I have met three Elliots over the course of my life thus far. Imagine my shit-eating grin then when I discovered not only is there a movie that shares my name, but that it’s a disorienting sci-fi social commentary! Now I can dine at the big kid’s table with my friends Eraserhead and Gummo! Eat you heart out, Steves of the world!
I am Elliot. Hear me roar.

Our titular hero in question, Elliot, shuffles about with a visage and demeanor that screams “cyberpunk spider dwarf.” The man in the TV harangues him, endlessly telling him he has work to do. Maintenance. In this sector, in that sector. It’s obviously all too routine. He scoots about in the red and green glow of spaced-out catacombs where flesh meets technology. Like if Cronenberg designed a laser-tag arena.


When his work is temporarily done, or he finds a moment of reprieve, Elliot jacks in to another world where he exists as an avatar of who he wishes he could be. A man with a butler and all the charm to woo dancing digital maidens. Obviously this world is preferential to the life where he works as a lowly maintenance man. Through a series of events and obsession, reality and fantasy start to swim and blur, and Elliot is left seeking the truth in a dizzying and sometimes manic stupor.

Is this what the orb weavers see?

Not only do Elliot and I share a namesake, but we share virtually the same profession as well. I can relate to the disheartening slog of the daily grind at the bottom of the totem pole. So is it possible for me to give you a fair and unbiased review? Probably not!

Imagine Tetsuo the Iron Man and Red Dwarf had a baby, and then sent that Begotten one off down the river Koyaanisqatsi to settle in Videodrome. If you can manage that, you might come close to the vibe of Elliot. I never felt like I was watching the work of someone who was trying to make a movie. I felt like I was witnessing completed art, and that was my main takeaway from the whole experience of Elliot. The film exists as a piece of art that an artist needed to make, rather that being an imitation of recycled film language and themes.

Max Headroom is sick today. I’ll be standing in for him.

The synths and sounds of Elliot were like an entire extra character. You often hear that in the big budget world in regards to the setting. Something along the lines of “The third lead in that film was the little town of Dickshit!” But here it’s the sound. I felt like existing in that world would feel like wearing headphones. The rolling, reversed-sounding synths made me feel like I was seeing something forbidden, that was both ancient and futuristic simultaneously. The sound of creeping madness, perhaps.


There is so much meat to this flick that you could scrape the bone for meanings and insights for hours. It can also just be enjoyed as a singular visual experience, which is part of the genius of Elliot, whether intentional or not. This one is a high recommend, folks.



Stay slime, and be rad at all times!

P.S. Purchase Elliot at elliotthemovie.com or mmrentals.storenvy.com


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