P&I: TIMEKEEPERS OF ETERNITY (2021)
Ten strangers awaken aboard a redeye flight from Boston to Los Angeles to the surreal discovery that the plane’s crew and passengers have vanished. Taking control of the aircraft, they make an emergency landing, but their nightmare persists as the outside world is similarly devoid of any life. As they investigate their uncanny surroundings, a distant and terrible sound emerges from the horizon. The sound gradually grows closer and closer, and it is soon surmised that whatever its source, its ominous approach spells their certain doom.
If any of the above sounds familiar, that is because it describes the premise of Stephen King’s novella THE LANGOLIERS, which was adapted as a television movie by Tom Holland in 1995. In this mesmerizing experimental film, animator Aristotelis Maragkos has laboriously printed every frame of Holland’s film to paper and painstakingly reconstructed and reshaped it through black and white collage animation. Not only is the narrative now compressed, and compellingly recentered primarily on the deteriorating mind of the character Craig Toomey (deliriously portrayed by Bronson Pinchot), but its editorial rhythms become a hypnotic dervish of hand-crafted folds, tears, and crinkles that recall the haptic texture and meta-dimensions of avant-garde filmmakers like Peter Tscherkassky (particularly his film OUTER SPACE). The result profoundly collapses the themes of its story onto the film’s form itself, and remarkably magnifies the actors’ performances, particularly Pinchot’s, into an echelon of high camp that borders upon revelatory.
For aficionados of remix art, THE TIMEKEEPERS OF ETERNITY is a must-see, and Fantastic Fest is excited to augment its premiere with the hosts of the preeminent Stephen King podcast THE KINGCAST (Eric Vespe and Scott Wampler) in attendance and on hand to unpack its strange sounds and stranger sights. (PETER KUPLOWSKY)