Tuesday, July 8, 2014


MALICE IN WONDERLAND (1982) (UR) Dir. Vince Collins
4 mins.
This short animation juxtaposes the themes and characters of the Lewis Carroll classic with psychedelia and sexuality. Alice enters into her own labial gates and transforms into various yonic and phallic creatures. Using simple, crude and yet hypnotizing animation loops, Vince Collins essentially encapsulates the Gnostic angst towards the human body.
Certain Gnostic groups, such as the Skoptsi and the Cathars, believed the body to be the prison of the soul. Enlightenment was therefore to transcend the mortal shell, and this goal was obtained through various extremes, be it sexual abstinence, castration, flagellation, or even, in the case of some Gnostic sects, promiscuity.
Alice is shown physically morphing much like the alien in John Carpenter's The Thing. The different illustrations highlight the fluidity of gender, the frailty of flesh, and the implicit sexual innuendos in commonplace phenomena, be it drinking from a bottle, smoking a hookah, or opening a door.
Sometimes the images are surreal and beautiful, other times they are jarring, nightmarish and unrelenting. They reflect the full and complicated spectrum of human sexual relation, both internal and external. It can be gorgeous, sensual, fun, indifferent, gross, violent, or traumatic.
Many Gnostics believed that the creator-god, or Demiurge, was evil and had created an imperfect world; hence the proclivity of suffering and disorder within it. Alice herself seems to question the intentions of the Demiurge itself when, at the end of the animation, she asks, "Who has had such a curious dream?"


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