Paul Thomas Anderson directs the Radiohead singer in a short, dialogue-free moodscape that’s unsure of its final destination
To emerge alongside his new solo album Anima, Thom Yorke has released this short film for Netflix, directed by Paul Thomas Anderson; they are playfully calling it a “one-reeler” in homage to the silent movie era. But of course, nothing could be more digital and 21st century than this: a sleek piece of luxury content, designed to synergise with another piece of content, streaming on your tablets and smartphones. This elaborate dystopian moodscape, which is without dialogue, is a cross between a pop video and an expensively upholstered film school graduation project – or indeed an ad for cologne: “Anima, by Chanel”.
Yorke himself acts and even dances the lead role; and as executive producer and musical star, it is a prerogative he can exercise in parallel with not giving up the day job. The choreography is by Damien Jalet, who worked on Luca Guadagnino’s Suspiria remake, and the piece showcases three new songs: Not the News, Traffic and Dawn Chorus.