In a materialistic world of artificial identities, a storyteller unleashes a mysterious godlike being who abducts alienated mortals and leads them through metamorphosis to shed their artificial masks and embrace each other’s common humanity.
UNSKIN is an unusual, surreal, non-linear short film from emerging British writer and director, Elcid Asaei. It is a project that encompasses multiple genres, and brings together the world of narrative cinema and contemporary dance, through a visually striking story that is told in 4 acts. The story can be quirkily described as ‘A Christmas Carol’ meets ‘The Dark Knight’ in the ‘Twilight Zone’, yet this film moves beyond the sum of these references.
The dark premise of the story centres on Roger Piper, a quiet yet rebellious agent of positive change in the dysfunctional setting of the film, whose superpower is to unleash through his storytelling a godlike alter-ego named ‘UNSKIN’. This alter-ego stalks the landscape and abducts alienated and morally corrupt mortals, leading them through a metamorphosis that sheds their artificial masks and transcends them from division to unity, concluding in an unexpected and provocative ending.
UNSKIN may at first come across as a predominantly dark story, yet light does emerge from its darkness, and through the protagonist and his alter-ego, the beginning of a transformative change in society. The story was originally inspired by contemporary debates around environmental and social fractures in increasingly divisive times. Elcid wanted to explore these debates and create a multi-layered short film that is unique, original and thought-provoking.