Immortal (Ad Vitam)
An interesting and rare experience of the creator translating their own graphix to the screen.
By Tym Stevens
Metal Hurlant magazine (and its bastard, Heavy Metal) reinvented the post-modern future.
In 1975, Moebius and Druillet's guerilla mag rewired SciFi with world-worn dystopias, hardboiled alienation, boundless sensuality, and a new height of fine artisanship. Everything from Star Wars and Alien to The Matrix and Fury Road bears their DNA. One of their best contributors was Enki Bilal, whose moody and textured illustration guided elaborate noir futures laced with ancient gods.
His graphic novel "La Foire aux Immortels (The Carnival of Immortals)" (1980), the first in the Nikopol trilogy, forms the basis of his own film adaption here. Bilal utilizes the most advanced video game CG of the time to paint his worldscape, to generally impressive result. Beyond the eyecandy (or its hindsighted imperfections), Bilal's odd blend of prickly disaffection—probably fostered under Tito's dictatorship in his youth—and longing for release in the surreal carries the film and spellbinds the interest.