If you didn’t know better, you’d be forgiven for thinking this video is of the beginning of an apocalyptic war. Something out of Bladerunner or Cormac McCarthy’s The Road. But it’s not. The flashes of neon colour are much too happy for it to be a war, though it is a battle of sorts. Shots of people marking their faces with warpaint, faces covered with scarfs and hands thrown up to the sky are all ingredients of the preconception of religious war. Yet this is a battle of scented powder and perfume to celebrate Holi, the Hindu festival of Spring. And holy this video certainly is. The slow-motion tracking of coloured powder moving through the air has such an air of ethereality; of lightness and insubstantiality that one can’t help but feel it’s directly from heaven. The dust flying off the coloured ‘bombs’ as they hit their target creates an image of magical fantasy as the sunlight hits, causing sparkle and glitter, and yet the background of grimy urban reality, the seriousness of the people featured and the very playful act is so very human. Beautiful.
Production & Creative: Variable
Post-Production/Editorial: The Mill
Directors/Cinematographers: Jonathan Bregel & Khalid Mohtaseb @ Variable
Executive Producers: John Rule & Mike Sutton (@MNS1974)
Editor: Ryan McKenna
Colourist: Sal Malfitano
Original Score/Sound Design: Salomon Ligthelm