For most movies, the story is all they can count on to make people stay till the end credits. For others, it’s action packed scenes or delicately detailed animation. Flatland can boast of neither. I’m in fact more than comfortable telling you the entire story from start to finish without a second thought. And the animation looks like something my friends in Manipal could make over the weekend. The heart of this movie lies solely in the thought put into it and the way it opens you up to obvious realities to which we are however, oblivious.
Flatland is exactly what it sounds like- a 2 dimensional world. Shapes of various lengths and breadths just going through their normal routine life, with the same politics and everyday work we 3 dimensional humans have to go through. Life gets disrupted at the turn of the third millennium when a Sphere is selected to go into the 2D world and show a chosen individual (a Square) the third dimension.
The initial disbelief at what he was seeing was quickly washed away by the realization of a new infinity before him. He was introduced to gravity, to 3D shapes and even got to see his whole world from above. When the Sphere was unable to explain to the Square what this new dimension actually was, he took the Square to “Pointland”, a world of only one dimension. Here, he made the Square explain other dimensions to the point, a task he undoubtedly failed at.
All this must either sound dumber than a badly carried out blonde joke or it simply went over your head, but the point it leads to still seems to keep hitting something at the back of my head. The Square asks the Sphere after this encounter with the point- Could there be a fourth dimension?
I’ve seen animated movies explaining exactly what a Tesseract (a cube with an extra dimension) is. But the basic essence of the fact that it somehow holds a dimension perpendicular to basically everything in this entire Universe is unfathomable.
Through all this, the movie manages to deal with and portray the daily lives and problems of people of all four worlds (Pointland, Lineland, Flatland and Spaceland). But don’t go by what I’m saying here. I’m still stunned by how smooth the whole movie was at shoving this enormous amount of reality down my narrow mind. I can in no way impress upon you the true magnitude of the thought that my dimension is simply not the last. An unfathomable world lies within my reach if only I could expand my mind- perpendicular to the space it now occupies.