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Meshes of the Afternoon (1943)

Not Rated | | Short, Fantasy, Mystery | 1943 (USA)
A woman returning home falls asleep and has vivid dreams that may or may not be happening in reality. Through repetitive images and complete mismatching of the objective view of time and space, her dark inner desires play out on-screen.

Directors:

Maya Deren, Alexander Hammid (as Alexander Hamid)

Writer:

Maya Deren
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1 win. See more awards »
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Cast

Complete credited cast:
Maya Deren ... The Woman
Alexander Hammid Alexander Hammid ... The Man
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Storyline

On her way back home, a solitary woman picks up a frail flower, and then, she drops her key--and when she finally enters her home--exhausted, she falls asleep in a deep and comfortable armchair. However, even in her intimate dreams, an intangible and elusive dark presence blemishes her afternoon nap--she tries to catch it; but, in vain. Now, bizarre but perfect doppelgängers of her physical self materialise in the house, catching a glimpse of a record player playing a never-ending silent tune; a telephone, and a sharp bread knife, as the already confined environment becomes more and more a maze-like purgatory. The knife thirsts for blood; the woman hungers for a way out. Can the undivided mind/matter entity escape consciousness? Written by Nick Riganas

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Short | Fantasy | Mystery

Certificate:

Not Rated | See all certifications »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

This film was selected to the National Film Registry, Libary of Congress, in 1990. See more »

Goofs

When The Woman tries to open the supposedly locked door for the first time, it gives way a little (too much). See more »

Alternate Versions

The original print of Meshes was completely silent (w/o music). Teiji Ito's score was added to a sound reprint in the 1950's. See more »

Connections

Referenced in Cool Hands, Warm Heart (1979) See more »

User Reviews

 
A woman fighting with identity
2 October 2002 | by ShellyShockSee all my reviews

Laden with symbolic imagery, this short film focuses on the struggle of a woman to find her identity independent of men, emotional baggage and societal expectations. Constantly chased by a doppelganger, Maya is confronted with the many aspects of herself at the dinner table. One of her personalities must commit murder to free her. Is she saved from the flower of womanhood or die without expectations?

I suggest watching the movie a few times through to catch all of the imagery and keeping Freud in mind when distilling the symbolism. This film is very interesting and beautiful independent of theme. Definitely worth a look!


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Details

Official Sites:

DVD | Edited DVD

Country:

USA

Language:

None

Release Date:

1943 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Meshes of the Afternoon See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$275 (estimated)
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Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono | Silent

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
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