In a remote part of Stalin’s war-torn Union of the Soviet Socialist Republic, Grigori, Manager of munitions FACTORY293, faces the realities of his existence.
It’s cold, the country is war-torn and the factories are loaded with female workers. Welcome to Factory293, an astonishing stylistic film by Roderick MacKay set in a remote part of Stalin’s war-torn Union of the Soviet Socialist Republic. Grigori, Manager of munitions FACTORY293, faces the realities of his existence, despite the infatuation of his female factory workforce, he is drawn to increasingly melancholic thoughts – Stalin has abandoned him. With a howling blizzard outside, the factory’s power is suddenly cut, interrupting Grigori’s intent to take decisive action. In a flurry to restore the power before the inspectors arrive, Grigori directs two of his machinists into the raging blizzard to investigate.
When people are forced to act like machines, malfunctions occur. Amidst the static-ridden propaganda radio broadcasts and the disorientating whitewash of the blizzard, this truth emerges and confronts our characters.
What impresses us quite the most about MacKay’s production is that despite the story’s blizzard-swept Russian setting, FACTORY293 was made entirely in sunny Perth, Western Australia.
Produced by MEANING MAKER and DIGITAL MEDIA ARTS, this intentionally ambitious project was largely designed as an experiment to demonstrate the production team’s capacity to tell stories set in any time or place; within worlds that must be designed and built from the ground up, while maintaining high production values on a shoestring budget.
The production team managed to create a gloomy film with a strong art direction mixing historical elements and a steam punk morbidness. The story is contained but profound, which allowed the short to stretch through some length without losing any integrity. Overall an impressive production from all angles that definitely should ignite some behind the scenes curiosity: This is how they got it all made in Australia.