Four friends on a camping trip at an isolated farm wake up to discover they’ve all swapped bodies, in the second feature from award-winning South African director Jenna Bass.
Jenna Bass' second feature, High Fantasy, confirms the suggestion she is part of "the new wave of South African filmmaking." In following up her award-winning debut, Love The One You Love, Bass turns her camera — actually an iPhone, which she used to shoot the film — on four very different friends camping in the Northern Cape.
From the get-go, their jovial antics are interspersed with cutting conversations about race, land claims, and gender relations. Against starkly beautiful desert landscapes, the group captures these debates on their phones (between performing party tricks and hitting joints). But when they wake up the next day, they've inexplicably swapped bodies. Now, the discussions from the day before take on painful, and potentially destructive, new meanings.
High Fantasy reverberates with a powerful realness that is grounded by breakout performances from Qondiswa James, Liza Scholtz, Nala Khumalo, and Francesca Michel — all co-writers of the script. Their performances transcend clichés so often associated with asking questions about what it would mean to live in another's skin.
With a raw style that's part Blair Witch and part Tangerine, High Fantasy probes apartheid's still-unhealed wounds and challenges the platitudes of a promised peaceful future.