Immortality Revue – an irresistible dive into a Hollywood mystery | Adventure games
For several years, British video game designer Sam Barlow (His story, telling lies) explores a new territory on the border between cinema and interaction. Unlike the cranky full-motion video films of the medium’s formative years, such as dragon’s lair Where Night Trap – film versions of Choose your own adventure books – Barlow typically presents the player with a messy treasure trove of film clips that can be accessed in a random but logical order. Over time, they form a narrative collage, from which an observant player can trace the outlines and eventually the details of a cohesive story.
Immortality This is where Barlow’s pioneering experiments (here supported by many collaborators) find their ideal form. It’s an irresistible dive into a Hollywood mystery, in which you cycle through stills of three never-before-seen films made between 1969 and 1999 that all star seemingly ageless model-turned-actor Marissa Marcel. This Monroe-like starlet, both wildly flirtatious and ineffably sad, has disappeared. Can you uncover how and why, using only the clues found in and around his work?
You start with a single clip. Use an interface designed to replicate the form and function of an old Moviola Editor, you can pause the footage at any time and click on any actor or prop (even a shape) that interests you. The screen then zooms in and teleports you to a similar frame from another clip, taken from one of the film’s three “texts”. You claim the clip for your collection and start building the story through more match cuts. Along with the source material from the vivid film, you also get access to some candid behind-the-scenes moments, and even sexual alliances. It’s all convincingly acted and beautifully filmed, making you feel like a detective, editor and spy all at once, part of things no one was meant to see, as well as things attendees hoped everyone would see. world would have see.
Along with the inherent unease of watching intimate footage of a missing person, Barlow incorporates a splash of mystical elements that darken the mood of mystery. To take notes. Leave breadcrumbs. This ode to the magic of cinema is a winding labyrinth that reserves its finest rewards for the attentive obsessives.