An anthology of anthologies
On the program for this third session, one more clumsy satire, which ends with a bonus reference to Elon Musk, a psychotropic lunar trip, an invasion of express zombies, yet another face-to-face between a handful of spooks and an animal terminator, the creepy exploration of an alien colony, a rodent war, and not one, but two Lovecraftian tales. A frankly generous science fiction catalogwhich we despaired of seeing again in Love, Death & Robots.
Because even so, despite its flaws, season 1 was ambitious and spectacular enough to win support, the limits of the series very quickly appeared. On the narrative level, many segments, real visual demonstrations, are sorely lacking in substance, when they do not always recycle the same recipe, based on soldiers under amphet and creatures in need of fresh flesh. Blame it on the deadlines granted by the red N and the technical complexity of the whole thing.
A war machine
An inevitable observation after season 2, which chained meaningless and generally forgettable sketches. The format owes everything to the number of episodes and their quality, which is both its strength and its weakness when the production pace imposed by Netflix prohibits replicating the size of season 1. Fortunately, despite being barely an episode longer than the previous season, the third batch almost finds the ambition of the great hours of the series. Not only because the chapters are generally of better quality, but also because they are much more heterogeneous.
Of course, new fights of marines are there – at this stage, it is almost a trademark -, in episodes 5 and 8. But the artists in charge exercised as much in pure horror as in unbridled action, in conceptual humor as in contemplative, even metaphysical fresco. Even better, have slipped into the selection one or two UFOs, such as the last episode, with the artistic direction falling either from the genius, or from the most flagrant bad taste, with the choice. Whether or not we adhere to the thing, it is difficult to take away its originality.
Aesthetically, CGIs are almost always in the spotlight. However, they have little eye on demonstrative hyperrealism to better marry the developed aesthetic universes, as evidenced by the atypical character design of the segments bad trip and Mason’s Rats. Unsurprisingly, it’s once again breathtaking on a technological level alone, even though certain artistic choices spoil the party a bit, even if it means, for example, considerably reducing the interest of the very interesting the swarm. Always very spectacular, Love, Death & Robots remains unevenand so much the better.
Some pure science fiction visions
David and the Goliaths
However, this new season is likely to attract a much larger audience than usual. And for good reason, it includes an episode signed by the acclaimed filmmaker David Fincher, entitled bad trip. For his return behind the (virtual) camera, the director of mank is trying his hand at animation for the first time in his career, which has not failed to arouse the curiosity of moviegoers. Some of the editors, not particularly adepts of the medium, rushed on this trial run as soon as it was put online, and they were not disappointed.
In fact, it makes sense that Fincher would partner with Blur Studios, co-founded by series creator Tim Miller. Specializing in ultra-precise digital imagery, he had all the keys in hand to serve the director’s unhealthy perfectionism. Coupled with a deliciously macabre artistic direction, the meticulousness of this association gives birth to one of the most beautiful monsters seen on a screen for a couple of years, a gigantic demonic crustacean whose shadow hovers over the poor crew of a ship.
Plus a very interesting action sequence
Absolutely terrifying, the segment inevitably recalls the most appetizing aborted projects of the great David as well as the desperate fables of Lovecraft. As with the famous author, an almost divine monstrosity pushes the heroes to the limits of their humanity and damages the spectator’s mental health in the process. This makes you want to see the guy tackle horror cinema once and for all.
But that’s not the only good surprise of the season. Let’s move on to the new part of the adventures of the trio who break open doors or to the last episode, (too) long sensory experimentation whose value everyone will judge. Some sketches are not stingy in action (Come on, fire!dumb as the moon, but entertaining) or in gore (In the darkness of the depthsnot very original, but filled to the brim with guts). The funniest of them probably remaining Mason’s Ratshumble farce exacerbating to hyperbole the absurdity of war escalation.
We must save the rat soldier Yann
In the comedy department, impossible not to mention Night of the Living Deaddoubly penalized: placed just after Fincher’s segment, it is co-written by Jeff “guilty of sonic »Fowler. Against all odds, this little pellet is a brilliant zombie parodywhich takes advantage of the expertise of Blur and Buck to retrace an invasion of the living dead in its entirety, not without pastiche of the codes of the genre.
The idea amuses, the small valves scattered here and there ensure the pace. We pray that the series continues to offer us this kind of finds, or even that it persists in hiring great authors, whether they are producers or not, just to inject a little madness into these technical tours de force. .
Love, Death & Robots is available in full on Netflix since May 20, 2022.