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Short Film

A Short Mission: Valley of Dolls

Dolls are the damned creepiest things in the world. If you don’t believe me then watch Chucky, Dead Night or any doll based horror film. The dead eyes and the eerie realism to them make it completely terrifying. Imagine my horror then, as I switched on this mini documentary about a woman who makes dolls. Not just any dolls! Dolls of people who have passed on to the other side or left her tiny village. What could in fact become the horror story of the century is a sensitive portrayal of a woman who has dedicated her life to carving out memories of a once alive village.

Yes. It all seems a bit creepy. This labour of love is dedicated to dolls of cloth in different positions. Ayano Tsukimi, the woman behind the film, even makes them move and smile. I mean, just spending ten seconds in the vicinity of a Barbie Doll when you are single and about the age of ten gets you a dozen weird looks. But in fact, Fritz Schumann tells her story with this air of empathy and understanding. Her earnest story is full of passion for her craft and her idealism with making these snippets of how the village used to be are actually endearing. You’ll fall in love with Ayano because she is just a person, in a deserted village, trying to make things feel a bit more like the home she grew up with.

Valley of Dolls is, in fact, a simple tale of the impact of creativity. A wonderful and stirring piece well worth a few minutes of your time.


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