Brief intro: The Kite deals with the issue of death, but it does so in a simple metaphorical and symbolic way on the relationship between the little boy and his grandpa. It explains that none of us are here forever and that all living creatures must die, but also to show that death doesn’t mean the end of our journey.
Director: Czech Republic, Slovakia, Poland／Martin Smatana
Creator’s Website: martinsmatana.com/films
As a Taiwanese, I’m not the exception but immersed in Japanese 2D frame-by-frame animations during childhood and had built the concept of so-called animation as Japanese style. While communicating with other Taiwanese people, they will have the same image in their mind if I forgot to mention what animation I’m talking about. Animation has a wide variety of forms to present, as long as it’s not recording sth in the reality, it could be called as Animation. And I love animation for the countless possibilities to speak out for the creators, no matter the results are amazing or letting the audience wonder “what I have watched???”
While watching The Kite, I was impressed by how director Martin Smatana depicted aging. At the first glace, it seemed like the style contains simple lines and shapes only. Then I realized it was for matching with the concept of charactors. Children own many layers of starched fabric, while the elders own soft, transparent silk that even not stick to each other, threads were fallen perhaps. I was as curious as the kid why grandpa’s arm looked like a hand clapper. Then the film explained. It also shows the director knows how to guide audience step by step.
The scene of kid and grandpa reunited again upon the cloud is also happened in many kids’ dreams when we lost our beloved. At the end of the film, kid is able to distinguish dream and reality, and understands that his grandpa will always there for him. Even though it looks simple, it echos deeply inside every audience.
For me, story matters. There’s no need to draw a glowing eye with stars, floating dress and hair, super expensive CG effects, and exaggerated expressions and meaningless dialog with the purpose the extend the episode. Hope one day the majority of Taiwanese can expand the horizon of the world.