The Cheddar Daisy

"Claude is determined to see the Cheddar Daisy, which can only be found at the top of the Peak-O’don."

The Cheddar Daisy is a short film by French artist Liselotte Macagno about the disregard tourism sometimes has for its consequences on the environment. The short was created by the artist during her studies at Angoulême-based EMCA.

Three main characters (a woman, a goat and a mountain), complemented by a crowd of tourists, external conflicts, non-realistic playful staging, zany dialogues and a focus on tourism and its impact on nature are the main elements of the short.

Situated in a rural area that features a small town and a mountain, The Cheddar Daisy employs non-realistic staging that adds a lot of playfulness to the film. It’s the only film so far on this site that features a dialogue between a goat (who happens to be a tourist guide) and a mountain. It’s clear the artist enjoyed the production process and this gets reflected in the final result.

The Cheddar Daisy employs a stylized aesthetic that leans towards the abstract for characters combined with a painterly one for background environments and other elements. The color palette uses saturated colors in line with the comedic tone of the film. Good work has been dedicated to character and environment design. The characters’ expressiveness, both through their aesthetic and voices, helps build and transmit the conflicts between them. The iconography is centered on tourism-related elements: buses, hotels, lines, crowds, shops, etc.

Visual rhythm is high, handled through editing, motion within the frame, pans, tilts, zooms and shakes. Extreme long shots abound to capture the expansive landscapes, two-shots deliver the interaction between the woman and the goat, and a few close-ups and medium shots help emphasize emotions and conflict. The shot at 0m36s is worth highlighting as it successfully transmits the idea of the continuous senseless photographing of the flower by a never-ending flow of anonymous characters. Also of note, the music chosen for the film fits perfectly well, helps build continuity and supports the shots and narrative.

What makes The Cheddar Daisy work so well? Highly creative script, great portrait of tourism’s possible consequences, wonderful non-realistic staging, effective building of conflict, fun characters and dialogues and a subject that will appeal to a wide audience.

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