When you buy a ticket to go see a film, the film isn’t the product you’re paying for. Movies are simply a delivery system for something else.
Teams of craftspeople, using a variety of tools and time-honed methodology, work together over several years with the express intention of triggering a series of chemical reactions in your brain; emotions. It’s these feelings you’re paying good money for, created as if by magic, through the careful mix of lighting, camera movement, plot, performance and music (among many may other things).
These emotions vary wildly, from the adrenal rush of an action film to the joy and laughter of a fine comedy. In the case of I Lost My Body, the name of the game is sweet sweet sorrow.
You cannot help but be moved by this film, and though it is at times scary and exciting and romantic, melancholy is the main event. Don’t shy away from this - embrace it. It's okay, dare i say necessary, to feel sad from time to time.
A French film from Jeremy Clapin, Netflix has gone to great lengths to dub it into as several widely spoken languages. I hope it has the desired effect of opening the film up to as large an audience as possible, because it’s a film that deserves to be seen as widely as possible.
It is, in no uncertain terms, unique in its approach. A coming of age film completely re-imagined. Told from the perspective of a disembodied hand as it roams across modern-day Paris, the hand reflects on its life and the events that led to its dismembering. And so we witness the life of a young Naoufel; from early childhood through to later teenage years where the thrust of the film takes place.
Naoufel, a downtrodden pizza delivery boy, trying to make the best of the bad hand life's dealt him, is touched by the small act of kindness shown to him by a young woman he delivers to. Falling in love with her; he tries to work his way into her orbit, and sets off a series of events that leads up to the tragic loss of his hand.
Often drawn from the hand’s point of view; we’re taken on an adventure through parts of Paris we’ve never seen before, and from a unique perspective.
Beautifully realised in 2D animation, the plot takes a deeply unsentimental view of modern life, in a world that explores the worst of humanity, while still managing to find immense beauty.
Although the entire crew deserve a round of applause - I'd like to give a shoutout to Dan Levy, the film's composer - whose music I sought out later.
This multi award-winning film is a first in a way that few films are and I urge you to give it a chance, for its inventiveness and imagination. You won’t have seen anything like it.
As a disembodied hand escapes from a science lab and ventures across modern-day Paris in search of its owner; we witness a string of events that lead to its dismemberment; and the life of a young man, Naoufel as he tries to romance a young woman he meets through a chance encounter.
This film is available to watch on Netflix.
Running time: 81 minutes.