The Star Under Lights: Millennium Actress

Millennium Actress’s credits open with the view from a train, as light flickers past in a tunnel before giving way to city skyline. It’s fitting that an animated movie about the deception of film begins with those flickering lights; the light of a train on a tunnel is itself one of the simplest forms of animation, a series of starkly lit shots creating the appearance of motion. As the view transitions to a bombed city under blue skies, the image shifts, with a plane overhead melting into first a modern passenger jet, and then a rocket in space. Fluid transitions across time and space are an accepted part of reality in this world; what matters is not the base nature of the world, but the dramatic throughline of the object in flight. What catches the eye is what remains. What we remember is what exists.

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