Tuesday, 22 May 2012

Challenge Excepted: Ireland

From Greece to Italy and now to Ireland.

The film, Ondine.

I came upon this film by chance when, as usual I was flicking through a film related magazine and saw a review of Ondine. I was intrigued because it starred Colin Farrell playing a 'dad' and it was an Irish film. I thought how rare it is to see a actor who has climbed into the Hollywood bed, climb out of it and go back their roots.

The story is about Syracuse (Colin Farrell) an Irish fisherman who lives on the outskirts of a Irish coastal town. His life is changed when he catches a mysterious woman in his nets. His daughter believes her to be a magical creature, a Selkie, a seal in the water and a woman on land.

Below is a picture on a stamp showing the capture of the seal woman.

Called a modern fairytale it feels exactly like one but only because Syracuse's daughter Annie believes the story to be one. The whole way through I kept changing my mind whether it was true or not, but of course it didn't matter by the end if she was a Selkie or not. She is in love with Syracuse and he is with her but there is always going to be something in the way of happiness. It is a modern fairytale after all.

I thought the film had a reality feel mixed with a mysterious magical undertone. There are a few very sad and tragic events in the film, things that I didn't expect which made it feel too serious but the overall tone of the film was a calming magical experience. But I always feel that way when a story is set in a small town by the sea. Except Breaking the Waves, that was just plain awful.

End Line: An unusually, gentle modern fairytale.

Next stop, Norway.

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