The first thing that strikes us when The Girl With The Rivet Gun starts is the animation style: everything is made out of painted cardboard, from the backgrounds to the characters and everything in-between, moving together in stop-motion.
This unique style is Danielle Ash’s (“Bartender’s Tale”, “Pickles for Nickels”), who creates with it a creative, beautiful and fun world in between 3D and the 2D flatness of the material.
This new visual storytelling serves an important and very real story, that of three American women who worked as riveters during World War II. This was the period of modern history when women really started to enter the workforce, a pivoting moment in women’s history.
The three women in the forefront here are Esther Horne, Susan Taylor King, and Mildred Crow Sargent, all from different cities and background but whose experiences weave together a common history that also explores related topics such as racism and pay gap.
While the women appear in their cardboard form, we also see them in the flesh in brief interview segment. It is with their own words that they tell their own stories, the animation recreating what is being told in voice-over.
With this mix of documentary and animation, of real life women and a fantasy world, directors Anne de Mare and Kirsten Kelly (“The Homestretch”, “Asparagus! Stalking the American Life”) create a short-film both unique and warm, both informative and fun to watch.
After a while, it is not only the stories of the three women that awe us, but also the hard work happening right in front of our eyes by the women behind this film.