During a long shift. a male sales clerk fixes the sleeve of a bored mannequin bride. (Sophie Ellis-Bextor). Her groom sways back and forth, an expression of perpetual surprise on his face. The clerk pulls a strand of her hair and adjusts the groom’s jacket. She blinks and stares at the clerk. She closes her eyes and cocks her head as he works on the second bride’s dress. She twists her head all the way around and rolls it. The bouquet drops from her hands and she stretches her fingers. She puts her hands on the glass and breaks it. The mannequins in the neighboring storefronts remain plastic.
On the street, she shimmies off her wedding gown, revealing a second strapless magenta dress. The second bride ducks her head out the window and then moves her head from left to right. She leaves the window and balances herself. The second bride takes off her wig, bumbling along on the road.
Ellis-Bextor stops outside Riva Electronics and motions with her hands, freeing the mannequins from the Blondz shop. She dances past the stores. Three female mannequins step out of their display. A single female mumbles the words. The second bride walks on her knees.
She waves her finger as the mannequins learn to manuever their limbs by Night And Day. After dancing, she breaks the glass of the camera.
The process was slow. It began with a sharp pain in the knee as the store clerk moved her. Then, she could hear bits of conversations and soon learned whole words. The heat from the lights flustered her but allowed her limbs to become fluid.
Gradually, she could feel her limbs loosen and the pinch of bone forming underneath her plastic skin. A year later, she became real. She begrudged the nitpicky clerks who fussed at her clothes and removed them without any consideration. Her eyes followed the humans passing by, envying their freedom. With the heat from the lights, she was able to break free. It gave her power.
Walking down the street, she views the struggling female mannequins trying to speak or move and gives them their freedom. Some of their skeletons hadn’t fully formed yet and they spoke in grunts. Others could only amble around, their limbs stuck.
A male mannequin’s eyes dart as the women break out, fearing they may be trapped forever. One male mannequin lets out a muffled scream. However, it reverberates through his head. It was hardly a hum compared to the sirens and honks.
Director: N/A Year: 2002
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