(This is Coming Back To Life short film review, which is a 2019 short 3D animated film about a real life tower in Lebanon)
Seldom has a short film based itself on a real history without showing any human characters at all. Coming Back to Life thus becomes one of the few short films that tries to tell its story using abstract scenes, but is based loosely on the real-life source.
The whole film is based on Burj el Murr, an unfinished tower in Beirut which earned the nickname “Tower of Bitterness“. It was unfinished due to the deadly Lebanese Civil War which devastated the country terribly. And this whole film was created by the Lebanese-based studio – JPAG. Now, without further ado, let’s delve into the Coming Back To Life short film review below to check it out!
The infamous Burj el Murr is a tower that remained the symbol of the tragic war which devastated the country. Now, we are given an abstract perspective of how the tower symbolises the history of Lebanon.
Coming Back To Life Short Film Review
There is no actual premise here, so this film is kinda unique. However, for those that are well versed in the history of the tower and the country, there will no doubt be some scenes that provoke memories. There are a few scenes that contains hints or informations about the tower themselves.
We are shown different parts of the buildings, and all of them are dilapidated and filled with gloom. The feeling of emptiness and lifelessness is abound in this short film. I could not feel its true impact as I watched it while not knowing of its existence in the first place.
But it was an intriguing film nonetheless, and makes me interested in reading up about this infamous tower itself. There are a few scenes that tell us of its history through many subtle hints like the vegetation covered parts that signifies how abandoned it was to reflect the real-life tower condition. As well as the static-filled room with disconnected TV, like the whole tower is disconnected from life itself.
Though the animation is not the best, it does help to bring out the intended emotions with its design and other effects
Pacing is slow, but expertly paced to let us delve into the story world with its dark atmosphere. Now, the animation itself is actually pretty well done. It’s not overly animated but there is more focus on mood and atmosphere. Though the animation is not the best, it does help to bring out the intended emotions with its design and other effects.
Essentially, there are no characters here. And the tower itself is the main character and the focus. I quite like it as the animation makes us interested in the tower and its hidden histories. Surprisingly, this actually works by putting certain clues that reflect real-life events.
Soundtrack is another plus here with the SFX. The thunderstorm with the mellow piano track really makes this short film an emotional ride, especially for those that knows the history behind the tower beforehand. It almost perfectly induces the emotion within ourselves to feel the hidden history of the tower. And it works even better than expected with several SFXs in the film that accentuates the impact.