Wednesday, 7 November 2012

The Bird (L'Oiseau) and The Bird

Yesterday felt a little melancholy.
Sad news arrived about Mrs Jones, who is deteriorating in hospital. I met with her daughter-in-law and had one of those sad conversations I have had a million times before at work.
It is now the time to support relatives. 
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Last night I went to see the French film L'Oiseau.
It was not an easy watch.
Anna (Sandrine Kimberlain) lives a quiet, pointless and isolated  life in a grubby Bordeaux apartment. She works as a faceless kitchen porter, has frosty relationships with her co-workers and spends most of her spare time alone in a emotionally bankrupt world where she says and feels very little.
Over a lengthy and moody introduction to her somewhat sad life, we gradually find out that Anna has lost a young son, a bereavement that destroyed her marriage,and it is this faceless, unsympathetic grief that director Yves Caumon presents, in all of it's uncompromising and difficult facets.
Anna, is not the gamine little Amelie, existing  in a cute, isolated little world. As portrayed by the tall, shopworn Kimberlain, she is a bookish,difficult, prickly shell of a woman, who is not adverse in picking up drunken strangers at obscure Japanese movies and walking the dark streets of the city at night.
She is not a woman anyone could warm to.
Her salvation comes in the shape of a small pigeon who becomes trapped behind her fireplace. She frees the animal who becomes an uneasy flatmate, and in their brief time together, the bird becomes the emotional catalyst Anna needs to start to move forward.
There is no sentimentality in Anna's psychological journey, indeed Caumon peppers the whole film with a challenging ambiguity. The "bird "is not merely a indication of hope and an object of affection, it could  also be  a mirror image of Anna, an animal trapped by it's own fears and inabilities. Whatever the answer is, Anna's transformation is documented with tremendous care and with meticulous patience,
and although the film is certainly not a "Lassie Come Home" movie, the tiny moment when the pigeon makes "contact" with Anna's buried emotions is incredibly touching to watch.
8/10
.
To bookend this "review" somewhat, I will leave you with some news of the three Marrans who were "donated" to me a few weeks ago.. The chap that brought them , warned me that all were big rangers, so I guess I was not too surprised that one evening only one bird arrived back to her nesting coop.The other two, I suspect crossed the riding stables' fields and have either got lost or got picked off by a predator before they could roost.
Whatever happened, the one lone Marran is proving to be somewhat of a compelling character . Everyday she gallops away from the existing hens to live a solitary, bullied life on the peripheries of the field.
It seems a somewhat sad state of affairs.
I know it sounds somewhat indulgent, but a couple of times a day, I will seek the hen out and will  surreptitiously drop some corn nearby so she can feed without interruption and without bullying from the other hens and the ewes .
And what have I called this sad lonely little character?
Anna of course


37 comments:

  1. The French love 'anguish', and they do 'anguish' very well. I blame Napoleon.

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  2. You are such a lovely man. Thank you for being you.

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  3. You are so kindhearted. Thanks for being their for the relatives of patients and the patients themselves. Bless you John, you sweet man. Greetings, Jo

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  4. Sorry about grammar error, I meant "THERE"

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  5. Thanks for the review. Must see this.

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  6. Our new hens range wider than the others as well. We think that it might be because there is no fully adult cockerel to bind the hens together as a flock. Great review of that film, and know that that is a film I would enjoy. Hope your little hen manages to find her place amongst your gang.

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  7. You are a rare breed these days....a true carer. I have always said you can judge a man or woman for that matter by their treatment of animals... and other human beings. You are a daily joy dear man!

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  8. That sounds like a proper French film...all emotions and no real action...love it...

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  9. Ah yes, French film at its Frenchest. And Farmer Gray at his best.

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  10. You sound a bit down.Do something for you today.
    Jane x

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  11. Poor little soul...all her friends gone. Thank goodness she has you.

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  12. I agree with Jane you do sound low today. Take care of yourself,

    Gill

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  13. I've always liked bookends. This was one of my favourites.

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  14. I'm sorry to hear Mrs Jones is poorly and that her condition grows worse.

    That film sounds intriguing and very, very sad. Sometimes it helps me to see films like that so i know i'm not the only melancholy one, and sometimes it leaves me feeling hopeless.

    Glad Anna has found a human friend who'll look after her--maybe Chris, Albert, and the dogs can look after you and give you some hugs.

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  15. It's interesting and just a little odd that I was saddened by the poor lone Maran a bit more than the stories involving humans. I don't know why I've become so ubber sensitive lately to those types of stories....must be the lack of daylight hours practicing their magic again. sigh

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  16. Oh John - you have such a kind and tender heart. Hope that maran settles - I can;t say I ever noticed them being wanderers.

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  17. Maybe the Maran just needs a little peace and quiet so she can come up with new blog entries.

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  18. You reviewed that film beautifully John. An emotional film to watch while your spirits are low.
    I'm sure your kindness is a support to both patient & relative.

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  19. John you are an amazing kind hearted man

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    Replies
    1. shucks!
      naw... I just need ALL of my laying hens!

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  20. it's all a bit grey and gloomy over west isn't it? Hopefully that cake cheered you up a tad... you are a good man x

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  21. I admire the way you look after your animals, waifs and strays included. I also admire how often you go to the cinema - the last film I saw was Casino Royale - this does sound like a typically chewy French story.

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  22. This is a wonderfully "satisfying" post, but that movie sounds like one I'd avoid at all costs. I'm afraid I'd drag that awful feeling of melancholy out of the theater with me. Besides, there's enough sadness in real life without seeking it for my entertainment.

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  23. Send my best wishes to Mrs Jones' family and to her of course. A difficult time ahead for them. I can see why Annie Marran is so named. I hate it when birds, animals, little critters and people for that matter, are bullied just because they don't fit.

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  24. John, you certainly know how to tug at the heart strings.

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  25. I am feeling a bit like your marran today and a little melancholy too--Our election is over and even though it ended like I hoped it would, with the cold today I just wanted to have a cup of tea and go back to bed, but life keeps calling...

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  26. Has my comment been deleted, or is it just Blogger playing me up again? It seemed to be there this morning.

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    1. thats strange tom
      I remember reading it earlier
      I am having problems with stats today but that baffles me

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    2. My Blogger is going very mad and clunky right now - maybe it's that.

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  27. I think you would like 'All About My Mother' - it's of the same genre but sounds right up your street. I'm still waiting to see the spy in the sharp suit which is just about all I could manage right now.:-)

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    1. ONE of my favourite films nana
      made me laugh and cry,,,a roller coaster of a ride

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  28. Hi Anna, nice to meet you! Ewww....my husbands ex-wife name. Wish she woulda locked herself up in some bordeaux apartment! Whatever that means...bordeaux. Hey, isn't Bordeaux a type of wine?

    Cindy Bee

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  29. It worked!!!!! Can you hear me? John? John? I tried a different browser and voila! I'm real again! Cest la...something. (The moment calls for French but alas I know none.)

    This sounds like a movie that might strike too close to home for healthy watching...but I'd love to watch the scene between Anna and the pigeon. And poor little Anna Marran...I hope eventually somebody on that field befriends her. What we need here is another lost soul.

    Dxoxoxoxoxoxoxoxox!!!!!

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  30. I'm sorry to hear of Mrs. Jones. All of the people you speak about so fondly there in Trelawnyd are like an extended family here. Many goatie kisses to Mrs. Jones.

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  31. Lovely ...
    I had one of those hens and, being an Anna, I sort of admired her.

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  32. L'Oiseau is one of my daughter's favourite words because it has every vowel in it. :-)

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