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Koko-Di, Koko-Da

Johannes Nyholm

Swedish filmmaker Johannes Nyholm's sophomore feature, Koko-di Koko-da, uses fairytale-like imagery to explore a couple's experience of guilt and loss.

In a Groundhog Day meets The Blair Witch Project premise, the film centres on a doomed camping trip which sees the couple repeatedly terrorized by three bizarre characters from the woods. It’s been three years since Elin (Ylva Gallon) and Tobias (Leif Edlund) tragically lost their young daughter. Their relationship is filled with blame and anxiety, and this adds to the tension that builds each time we see them brutalized by the trio of maniacs. Elin and Tobin don’t become wiser each time the loop resets, on the contrary, they become increasingly helpless as they try to escape their demise. Brief interludes of shadow-play sequences and puppetry temper the claustrophobia conveyed by the couple's experience.

“brief shadow-play sequences and puppetry temper the claustrophobia”

Ultimately, this film is about the inevitability of death and the impossibility of escape. Nyholm skillfully uses cinematic means to deliver this message, leaving us all with the imprint of a vast haunted forest and a nursery rhyme that, though you might try to forget it, will keep coming back.