The Red Turtle (2016)

The Red Turtle

Dave author picI’ve recently started working at a new workplace. It sits opposite a spectacular view of the Pacific Ocean. Every day, that view proves invigorating. There’s something indescribably calming about the ocean’s infinity, even when I’m stressed to the gills.

The Red Turtle is perhaps the closest a film has come to capturing that feeling. This Studio Ghibli film from Dutch director Michael Dudok de Wit tells the simple, wordless story of a castaway on a desert island. The castaway’s efforts to escape the island are stymied again and again by a mysterious red turtle.

To synopsise the film is to lessen it, however. It’s a fable of sorts, a metaphor about learning to accept the life we live and recognise our own limitations. But it’s imbued with the resonant power of a creation myth, thanks to the simple yet expressive animation, the naturalistic sound effects, the swell of the vast ocean.

The Red Turtle might disappoint those expecting a fantastical adventure à la Miyazaki. For reasons I don’t fully understand, it sung with my heart. Its message may be familiar, even simplistic, yet the film’s meditative rhythm taps into a holistic harmony that rhymes with the tranquillity of the ocean.

4.5 stars

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s