Must See Movie Recommendation Vesper Explained. If ever there was an indie movie that punched above its weight class?? This is it. Vesper is a movie that is rich, opulent even, in its world building. Its extensive use of CGI for pitch-perfect effect shouldn’t be understated. Vesper sort of reminds me of the glorious Robert Pattinson movie entitled, High Life, which similarly painted an enormous tableau and then did its absolute best to stretch those rare budget dollars in the most effect way imaginable.
Vesper is the story of a post-apocalyptic world where some ruling class of elites control the food production through the dissemination of seeds that are only good for one-time runs. We get the feeling from the jump that all those that are in a sad enough state to scrounge the dregs of society for a survival, are in a really bad way. There are parasites and slugs that will eat you raw if given the opportunity. Parasites that live just below the surface. This is a horrible place to live. But enter Vesper, a clever individual who is determined not to be ruled or subjugated by anyone.
Some sort of global pandemic, asteroid, or reckoning has brought about a new middle ages to the world we visit in Vesper. A modern dystopia that seems like a clash between a hyper-modern ruling class, and a mud-raking group of subordinates. Vesper, played by Raffiella Chapman, a super smart and independent character, scratches out a living away from others, while simultaneously keeping her father alive by sheer cleverness and will. We learn in time that her mother just up and walked away one day… why? How? We don’t know the circumstances.
This world that Vesper inhabits is rich with detail and danger. And as we watch her move through her day in and day out challenges, we wonder if we could figure out a way to keep from instantly dying. We see Vesper gingerly step over that obvious ecological landmine. We watch her solve for that threat, and this other risk. She is clearly ultra-smart, and extremely capable. For example, she needs more electricity in order to keep her sick father alive (played by Richard Brake). So, she checks in with Jonas (Eddie Marsan), the helpful distant relative… that any discerning viewer will realize as the antagonist immediately. He’s a cult leader, and tyrant. We watch as he pushes one of the kids in his clan to murder a humanoid jug, and we know that he keeps women as “breeders.” Which places Vesper as more of an ideological t-boning of Jonas’ ideas than we initially realize. And yet, Vesper is out here alone, trying to carve a way in this dank wilderness all alone. And Jonas’ offer to come back into the fold must seem very tantalizing indeed.
After a crash of two people from the Citadel, Vesper helps out Camellia (Rosy McEwen). Camellia’s companion is murdered by Jonas, but Vesper keeps this information from Camellia at first. We ascertain that the Citadel is more of an enclave from the dangerous outer world. These high class Citadel dwellers have enough food, and protection, in order to never have to mingle with the outer world. So, why did these two come here? What are they not saying. Well, along the way, Vesper realizes that Camellia is actually a really high-end jug. And through her study of Camellia, she figures out how to unlock the single-use seeds controlled by the Citadel.
But when Vesper leaves to prepare to go with Camellia to the southern Citadel, Jonas pays a visit to Camellia. Vesper returns and the two women fight with Jonas… Camellia skewers Jonas’ hand to the table, and the women make a deal with him. To share the seeds, they can all have enough food to eat… they can have all they like. See? It makes sense – everyone can have all they need! Vesper has saved the day!! Jonas can go that way —-> and Vesper will go <—– that way. Simple.
And it’s this detail that proves Vesper has no idea how power works. She doesn’t understand how the Citadel is remaining powerful by controlling the lack of food. She doesn’t understand how Jonas is using the lack for his own benefit. If everyone has everything they want/need, why would the breeders in his clan stay? Why would the people he relies on to do his work and bidding stay? Jonas would be immediately irrelevant. Vesper is a threat just through her very existence. NEVER MIND THE FACT SHE’S A WOMAN. Talk about infuriating to Jonas! hahah.
Jonas agrees to Vesper’s plan, but then makes a call to the Citadel to let them know what Vesper has done. And I have to say, this was my favorite detail of the movie… and this is in a movie full of details.
Let’s Talk Vesper Design Magic
I mean, come on. For a movie with a €5 million budget, this movie does a lot. Like, A LOT. Yes, the story is very tight from a script and acting standpoint. But man, this world is enormous. The vision casting here is just blue-sky, crazy big. I loved every set, every next turn around the corner because I knew I was going to continuously be blown away. I mean, just the plants, the insects, animals standpoint… so much love and affection was just dumped on this film.
Must See Movie Recommendation Vesper Explained
First, what is Vespers? If you aren’t into the church, you can be forgiven for not knowing this. To my evangelical friends that don’t know this, shame on you. But in more traditional Christian perspectives (think Anglican, Eastern Orthodox, Catholic, Lutheran Churches) Vespers is an evening prayer service. Wait, what? So Vesper is a prayer? Huh. Better yet… it’s a prayer service. A host of prayers. A volley – a fusillade of prayer. A spiritual broadside of intercession – as it were. Hold on. What are you talking about Holmes? Just hold that thought for a second. And let’s review a moment in the film when Camellia attempts to kill herself. We learn she’s a jug, and that she’s actually on the run from the “perfect society” and that she just can’t do it anymore.
Camellia – “I don’t want to exist anymore.”
Vesper – “You don’t get to give up when things get hard. They’re hard for all of us. But we stay, and we help each other.”
A manufactured humanoid is saying that she is giving up. And it is Vesper who is saying we don’t get to quit – we help each other. Vesper is the counter-argument to Jonas. Jonas is the cult of personality that demanded his clan murder a jug in cold blood. Who controlled the food like a tyrant, controlled the tech in order to make himself powerful. It is Jonas that is controlling the communications and the ability to interact with the outside world. But throughout this movie, Vesper saves everyone she can. If she can help, she will. Think back. Her father, of course. But also the crashed ship. Individuals caught by the murderous plants. Even if there is no hope at all, she tries.
Vesper learns, dismantles the tech, the science, and figures things out. But what does she do with it? Patent it? Or give it away so that others may live? She is a prayer service. She is a spiritual call to awakening and change. She is a new way of living, doing, being. Vesper is showing society a different way to walk through life. This isn’t a move about 300 years into the future after the tech eats society. It’s about now. It’s a movie about knowledge, and compassionate living in the face of that knowledge damn it. Today we bio-engineer seeds… JUST LIKE IN VESPER, and we sue the hell out of farmers when those seeds blow into neighboring farms. I am not making that up. And the Supreme Court has normalized this behavior. And it’s now a precedent that is heralded as seminal to agricultural tech. WHAT HAVE WE BECOME? Yes, I understand Monsanto spent millions to create their “Round Up” ready seeds… to what end? I digress.
The movie Vesper is the future to which we are currently heading towards. And I loved how this movie addresses our alternatives clearly. Today, we can either monopolize information, and use it selfishly for our own personal benefit… or we can help others. “You don’t get to give up when things get hard. But we stay, and we help each other.” I mean. So much meat in that single paragraph. Are you out for your own benefit, or do you help others when you get the opportunity?
I will say, that the ending seemed a little simplistic, but it was consistent. Vesper used her knowledge of this evil landscape to her own benefit. But it did seem a little obvious. And yet, I don’t think that was a bad thing. Vesper saved the day by releasing the seeds she manipulated, and she ostensibly allowed these new bio-engineered food products the chance to change the world. She releases them to the wind, and hopefully, it’ll change the world.
The only question I have for you today is this – which camp are you in? Are you in the controlling camp? Or are you in the “help each other” camp?
Edited by: CY
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