Gilliamizing the Bava

The opening scenes of Mario Bava‘s 1966 film, “Kill, Baby, Kill” feature several cuts of some pallbearers making their way to the cemetery.

First, they work their way through the streets ….

"The Pallbearers in the Streets" animated GIF, by aforgrave

“The Pallbearers in the Streets” animated GIF, by aforgrave from Mario Bava’s “Kill, Baby, Kill!”

Then around a building …

"The Pallbearers Around the Building" animated GIF by aforgrave, from Mario Bava's "Kill Baby, Kill!"

“The Pallbearers Around the Building” animated GIF by aforgrave, from Mario Bava’s “Kill, Baby, Kill!”

And from there, out of town, and backlit across the horizon, towards the cemetery.

This next is a GIF recreation of what is two shorter, cut sequences from the film. In the film we only see them carrying the coffin for perhaps the middle half of the frame. I figured we needed to see them carry the coffin the all the way across the full frame. You know, so we could watch them all the way from one side to the other.

Caption here

“The Pallbearers” animatedGIF, by aforgrave from Mario Bava’s “Kill, Baby, Kill!” (600x 376, 256 colours, 38 frames, 323 KB)

Somehow, the shots evoked memories of Terry Gilliam‘s wonderful animations from his Monty Python days. Which, of course, thus suggested the introduction of an element of play.

Consider their movements through the town, as part of a Gilliam animation. If Gilliam were animating this, I think he would have had them moving faster …

"The Pallbearers in the Streets" - Gilliamzied

“The Pallbearers in the Street – Gilliamzied” animated GIF, by aforgrave from Mario Bava’s “Kill, Baby, Kill!”

Yeah, maybe that’s a little fast for the opening shot. But you play with the timing in a GIF for effect. In this case, a wait of 5 seconds on the first frame, and then a wait of only 0.02 for each of the subsequent frames. In the first one above, there is a wait of one second on the first frame, and then 0.15 on each of the rest, which looks pretty natural.

The Pallbearers around the Building would have less of a wait on the first (empty) frame. That way, it can look like they look like they’re racing around and around.


“The Pallbearers Around the Building – Gilliamized” animated GIF by aforgrave, from Mario Bava’s “Kill, Baby, Kill!”

By the time the Gilliam’s Pallbearers reached the flats, I bet they would be making odd mouth noises and grumbling as they went.


“The Pallbearers” animatedGIF, by aforgrave from Mario Bava’s “Kill, Baby, Kill!” – but faster!

I’ve also got a Photoshop file where they reach the upward slanting tree branch about a third of the way across, and they start to climb up it. The vision of having them get off the route by going up, and then pausing, and then down the smaller descending tree branch is there, in my mind, but as yet incomplete as a GIF.

Then there was some digging when they got to the cemetery. But unfortunately, Gilliam inspiration did not strike for that.

"The Gravediggers" animated GIF, by aforgrave

“The Gravediggers” animated GIF, by aforgrave

Post post inspiration: Maybe they need to gradually dig downwards out of sight? (Post post post-Paul commenting: I’ve started on the Gravediggers digging down. The background will be the challenge as they move downwards and reveal the non-existent cemetery behind them. Clone brush standing by.)

And what happens after the Gravediggers’ scene? I’ll have to get back to you on that! Certainly, most of the film.

Too many GIFs, too little time. At some point, one has to call it quits and just post. There are Twilight Zone GIFs to finish. But the finishing some of these Bava GIFs was calling. I have at least two more from this opening scene. But posted, I have.