There was a study that said horror fans cope better with the pandemic. It explained that horror fiction allows its audience to grapple with negative emotions in a safe setting.
Never before have hundreds of millions of people experienced the agony of being trapped in their own homes. This pandemic has brought on an apocalyptic horror film scenario that does not seem to end for some of us.
Being able to capture the pain of isolation and desolation it has caused us in a film provides a form of control. Being an audience in a horror film that also presents the audience in a starring role is strangely comforting for some. We can take a few steps away from reality.
“Transmission” is a metaphor for the mental, emotional, and physical horrors of the pandemic. It comes in four parts. The parts are about the different stages (simplified) of the viral life cycle: Entry, Replication, Shedding, and Latency.
As it is about the pandemic, the film covers a wider geographical map. Part one was presented in Chinese and Japanese. Part two was presented in Filipino and Vietnamese. There are, intentionally, no subtitles. What is shown speaks louder than what is said as ambiguity is part of its pathology.
“Transmission” 1/4 was made with Malaysian actors, Venus Lim and Robin Tan, with collaboration from Vincent Wong and Vanessa Ng.
“Transmission” 2/4 was made with eclectic veteran Filipino actor, Adriana Agcaoili, and Vietnamese newcomer, To Quoc Phu, and fellow collaborators; Mark Ocampo, Ysabelle Kim, Trinh Thi Huu Duyen, and Vivian Besana.
Part three is being produced in Hindi and French, and the final chapter will be in English and another yet-to-be-determined language.
The Kollective Lab makes social commentary via genre entertainment. Using a chimera of horror, sci-fi, and mystery to tackle societal issues that plague our consciousness and subconscious mind.
It’s now in the midst of developing a documentary about happiness and mental health, and a short video horror series about anthropomorphism and loneliness.
Cover image sourced from THE KOLLECTIVE LAB / YouTube.