Tuesday, September 8, 2015
Everlasting Maternity: Angel's Egg (Mamoru Oshii, 1985)
Mamoru Oshii's Angel's Egg is coloured by tragedy, and exists as a post World War II picture in the lens of Japan. The setting is never explicitly named, but something has been taken from wherever this ragged fairy tale is set. Elaborately painted backgrounds convey a world on the edge of total destruction. All that is left are fragments of nature and ghosts of buildings that once stood tall. Cracked ceramics and broken childhood toys are furniture. This sense of loss is so exquisitely manufactured through landscape imagery that as purely a reaction to the devastation caused by the atomic bombs this would be an undeniable example of anti-war cinema, but there is more present here than that. A maternal cinema that captures a primal need within some to give birth, in this case metaphorically, to a new world.
She screams at the grave of the earth, and the tragedy that has been wrought. A mothers child is lost. A god weeps over her planet.