It’s 9:40 pm on Wednesday evening at the Ace Hotel in Downtown Los Angeles. The historic 1600-seat Theatre is packed to the brim (with a line nearly twice that wrapped around the block), and Skrillex and Wiwek have just premiered their new short film, Still In The Cage. “I don’t know if I’ve ever heard this much bass in a movie theater before,” Skrillex says, and he’s probably right.
The 18-minute short, written and directed by Canadian filmmaker Jodeb, is akin to an extended music video, spanning an entire EP’s worth of music — in this case, Wiwek’s recent OWSLA release, The Free and Rebellious. As the story progresses along, tracks from the EP — including Wiwek’s collaboration with Skrillex on “Killa” — provide an aggressive, oftentimes anxious, soundtrack.
Set in Bangkok, the film charts a dark, existential narrative, following a group of friends as they leave the city’s urban sprawl in search of a mythical community along the river. Downright hair-raising at times, the sinister composition recalls the art direction of Skrillex’s surreal “Red Lips” video.
Outside of its thrilling narrative and avant-garde editing techniques, Still In The Cage serves to depict the unique universe of ‘jungle terror’: Wiwek’s homegrown subgenre blending elements of grime, dubstep, electro and more. “We wanted to create the meaning and the visual behind what jungle terror is,” Skrillex said.
On a larger scale, the film serves as a metaphor for one’s individual search for freedom: “No matter where you are, you can’t escape yourself until you face yourself,” Skrillex stated in the official Q&A. Wiwek further added: “When searching for freedom, you have to start from the inside.”
Watch the film in its entirety below: