Avleen Kaur and Roya DelSol’s “Four Deadly Venoms”

“Four Deadly Venoms,” a short film directed by Avleen Kaur and Roya DelSol is a compelling narrative steeped in themes of betrayal, kinship, and the blurred lines between sanity and insanity. This film, a product of their collaborative genius, weaves together the rich tapestry of their diverse artistic backgrounds, creating a cinematic experience that is both innovative and introspective.

Avleen Kaur, originally a Toronto-based visual artist and designer renowned for her leather goods practice with BUDGAHM, has always had a profound connection with the visual arts. Her journey into filmmaking is deeply rooted in her upbringing in India, where she was exposed to the world of cinema through the Kung Fu films cherished by her family. This early influence, coupled with her admiration for the cinematic techniques of Kazuo Miyagawa, has instilled in her a unique visual sensibility. Kaur’s transition into film has allowed her to explore the sartorial and aesthetic dimensions of storytelling, focusing on the interplay of light, shadow, and movement to convey deep emotional and psychological states. Her approach to cinema, much like her work as a visual artist, is marked by an intent to delve into themes of despair, solitude, and the Kafkaesque absurdities of human existence, using the medium to explore the complexities of personal and collective experience.

Roya DelSol, on the other hand, brings to the table a rich background in directing, photography, and media art, with a particular focus on uplifting the narratives of Black, queer, and marginalized communities. Based in T’karonto, DelSol’s work spans music videos, fashion films, dance films, and experimental documentaries, all aimed at centering and visualizing the transformative power of Black joy and femme rage. Her artistic practice is characterized by a commitment to exploring new, liberated worlds through immersive and transformative visual narratives. DelSol’s direction in “Four Deadly Venoms” is a reflection of her broader vision to use media as a tool for liberation and transformation, employing a mix of photographic, video, and immersive techniques to challenge conventional narrative structures and to create a space for underrepresented voices in cinema.

“Four Deadly Venoms” stands as a testament to Kaur and DelSol’s shared commitment to pushing the boundaries of storytelling. The film’s non-linear narrative structure, a blend of film and digital media, challenges viewers to question the nature of reality and memory. This stylistic choice, coupled with dialogues delivered in the characters’ mother tongues, enriches the narrative, allowing for a layered exploration of character psyche and cultural identity. The innovative use of visual double entendres and the exploration of themes through a unique cinematic language showcase Kaur and DelSol’s ability to blend their artistic sensibilities to create a thought-provoking piece.

, Avleen Kaur and Roya DelSol’s “Four Deadly Venoms”, Liminul Magazine

Cody is the Editor in Chief and senior contributor at liminul.

He is a photography aficionado, fashion enthusiast, avid Lana Del Rey fan, and lover of all things aesthetically pleasing.

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