A hand of applause for French animation

Published July 29, 2020, 5:36 PM

by AA Patawaran

A scene from “I Lost My Body (J’ai perdu mon corps)”

Are we all depressed now, in varying degrees of paralysis or functionality, in various forms of denial or surrender?

This is why I highly recommend “I Lost My Body (J’ai perdu mon corps),” a French animation film that got a lot of critical attention when it debuted last year, from Cannes to the Academy Awards.

For lack of a better term, I’ll say the 81-minute film is beautiful, a series of tender moments hand-drawn and then set to motion at a delicious pace that mimics the slow descent of an autumn leaf to the ground or the unhurried drop of a snowflake on your eyelashes or the way a slight, errant wind blows over you like tentative fingers through your hair.

The star of the show is a severed hand

Such tenderness is in some form of a macabre disguise, the dismembered hand, which works to emphasize the recurrent themes of coming together and breaking apart in our lives.

It’s a well-crafted film, done by first-time filmmaker Jérémy Clapin, and a hymn to loneliness that fuels the quest for connection.

Its poetry lies in its ability to bring our attention to all that can be gained from loss, another recurring, if not inevitable theme in human life.