Sunday, April 12, 2009

Movie Review: Little Otik (2000)

Little Otik
Little Otik - Stop Motion Baby Horror - Movie Poster


Written & Directed by Jan Svankmajer

Veronika Zilková...Bozena
Jan Hartl...Karel
Kristina Adamcová...Alzbetka

A nice Czech couple have come down with Baby Fever. They see babies everywhere--held by their mothers, pushed in strollers, wrapped up in newspapers like fresh cod at the fish market. And they're just so darn cute, they decide that they've just got to have one. Unfortunately, there's a little problem with the piping, and the doctor says it's an impossibility.

But while the husband is out doing a little yard work (working out his sexual frustration, no doubt), he uncovers a large hunk of gnarled tree root. Rather than dispose of the blasted thing, he decides to do a little arts and crafts. He carves the root into a vaguely human-like form and presents it to his wife as a gift.

Does she like it? She loves it--falls in love with it, actually, thinking this hunk of wood is her new child. Obviously, she's not completely balanced. Her husband tries to speak some sense to her, but she won't listen. Instead, he plays along for nine months while she pretends that she's pregnant so as not to garner any suspicion when suddenly appearing in public with her "child".

But once she goes into "labor", something bizarre happens. Their "child", known as Otik, comes to life. Hidden from the public eye, Otik is cared for by his parents even when it becomes apparent that his growing appetite is quickly surpassing milk and formula, and landing more in the realm of human flesh.

Mmm....human flesh.

With more and more locals disappearing, the neighbors begin growing suspicious. One little girl discovers the truth and opts to take the wooden one under her wings.

This bizarre mix of folklore and Pinocchio is genuinely creepy and well worth the watch for fans of the outre, so long as you don't mind the subtitles and frankly less-than-stellar stop-motion special effects. So put on your reading glasses, plop ass on the couch, and prepare to scratch your noggin. It's a real puzzler...plus, you might have termites.

ALSO KNOWN AS: Otesanek

2000
Not Rated
132 Minutes
Color
Czech Republic
Czech (with English subtitles)

Wood, Jerry....wood.
--J/Metro

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