Short of the Week

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Myth Alexandra Hetmerova

Mythopolis

Characters from ancient Greek Mythology try to solve the problems of a modern age in this charming Graduation film from Czech filmmaker Alexandra Hetmerova.

Play
Myth Alexandra Hetmerova

Mythopolis

Characters from ancient Greek Mythology try to solve the problems of a modern age in this charming Graduation film from Czech filmmaker Alexandra Hetmerova.

Mythopolis

Directed By Alexandra Hetmerova
Produced By FAMU
Made In Czech Republic

Whilst stories based around Greek Mythology might not be everyone’s idea of a fun-time, Alexandra Hetmerova’s decision to base the premise of her FAMU graduation film around characters from these tales feels like an inspired one. A playful story of family and friendship, which sees legendary figures from ancient tales living in contemporary society, join Medusa, Cyclops and other mythical creatures as they try to solve the problems faced in today┬┤s world.

With the origins of the Mythopolis narrative beginning when Hetmerova was working on her previous film Swimming Pool, a short which also featured Greek mythological creatures (Centaur and Mermaid), it sounds like it took the filmmaker sometime before she found the right balance in her story. “I realised that Medusa had potential to be a great hero for a film”, Hetmerova reveals, “after that I started writing a story about her. But it still wasn’t good, not until I added more creatures. All of them have known characteristics which fit perfectly together into the final story”. Although the impact of the film does somewhat rely on how familiar you are with the characters it portrays, even without this knowledge Mythopolis still feels like a relatable and accessible film – something that is echoed by the film’s success on the festival circuit, where it has even picked up a few ‘Chidlren’s’ awards.

Just over a year in production, Hetmerova spent six of those months working on the script and another six on the animation. Animating everything herself in TV paint, with a little help from her friends, the filmmaker says that her main aim with Mythopolis was to create “a film to entertain people…accessible to all”. With Mythopolis now complete and released online, Hetmerova is already moving onto new projects. Currently working on a section of a movie based on the music of German composer Damian Marhulets, a script for her next short film (a tragicomedy about a strange-loser with a plastic bag on his head) and a TV series about two hungry bears, the filmmaker might need the many hands of Hecatonchires to help with all of that work.