Madame Tutli-Putli

Madame Tutli-Putli

Madame Tutli-Putli is some sort of puppet animation. There is no dialogue, just an ominous soundtrack.

It tells the story of the terrifying train ride of the title character.

Visually it’s really interesting, just the attention to detail of the clothing, the use of light and reflection, the movement of the characters, etc. And it’s very effective in establishing and sustaining a scary mood.

Unfortunately, the story itself is a little too obscure for me. It’s one of those things where there are indications she may be imagining or dreaming some of it, but if so there’s no way of knowing where the borderline is between which things are really happening and which aren’t.

I figured if it has a decent ending that clarifies at least some of that, then I could really like this, but alas, the ending is the obscurest part of all. As a wild stab in the dark, maybe it’s saying she died on the train and in the end comes to realize this and see that as a spirit she’s supposed to follow the mysterious entity that appears. But who knows.

I still kind of like the film though. It would be nice if it made sense, but the style is so striking that I feel like I have to recommend it on that alone.

In fact, it put me in mind of the remarkable work of Ladislas Starevich. The Mascot (AKA The Devil’s Ball) is incomprehensible to a large degree too, but I love it. I certainly wouldn’t put Madame Tutli-Putli on that level, but it’s an intriguing little film.

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