Posts Tagged ‘metaphysical’

Maze (verb) — to daze, perplex, or stupefy.

Tori No Uta (Bird’s Song) is a bizarre, haunting, quietly sensual, melancholy, romantic picture drama. It contains less than a minute of animation, proper, but relies upon panning across still artwork or zooming in/out on such. Even stranger still, it works. However, it works because the music connects the frames much like the eye connects the panels in Japanese tryptiches to create one whole scene; the overlying and underlying effect is one of otherworldly melancholy. I cannot overstate it: the music makes this all work — it’s that powerful.

The story itself is captivating and odd in its own right, but at times it feels a bit thin, as if parts were left out or glossed over (perhaps, this was an adaptation from an epic poem?). Nevertheless, it creates the framework from which the art and the music hangs.

A child has a flashback of taking a different route instead of going straight home, where he meets a mysterious girl. As long as the rain endures, he remains with her, but at last the rain stops. She presses a feather into his hand and says that as long as he keeps this, they will meet again. He remembers that, for those are the first words she has spoken to him.

He searches diligently for the path he took that day, but never finds it or her. Finally, the boy grows up, becomes a man, and leaves for another city. When he is fifty years old, he returns to the city in which he grew up.

There, in another flashback, he recounts a second meeting; here, to be with her forever, he must sing the song of the rainbow within the glass correctly. (Yes, you read that right.) He recounts one story corresponding to a color, and she does the same. These stories are beyond odd. I won’t spoil it for you, but if you’ve made it to this point, you can expect the deep, symbolic, ride.

In the end, he fails, and finds himself sitting alone on a swing in an abandoned playground. Then she returns, and embraces the boy. They wander off, to where it matters not, as long as they are together.

My words only give a summary of what occurs, but they don’t convey the whole otherworldly, symbolic, deep, timeless, and ultimately, perplexing nature of this story. Is he falling in love with a goddess? Is she even real or a symbol for something else, perhaps desire itself? How to explain the shifting of time back and forth between the child and the man?

Outside of the sensual gauze that wraps up this story, there is nothing objectionable; no nudity, no profanity, and only one scene of gore, which you’ll never see coming.

Recommended viewing. If you ever figure out what it means, though, let me know.

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