Flying Over Mother Short Film Analysis

Topics: Protagonist, Narrative, Character Pages: 3 (1260 words) Published: November 25, 2013


As children age and begin to understand the world, their perception is guided by the hand that raises them. The ways in which we are nurtured, punished, and parented affect us at all stages of life: childhood, our teenage years, and then adulthood. Flying Over Mother uses flashbacks, cinematography, and the actors’ performances together with the narration to demonstrate how the protagonist’s life is constantly accompanied by fear: beginning with his mother’s lessons as a child and then by his approaching death as his ship plunges from air to earth. The flashbacks in Flying Over Mother take the audience from the cockpit of a crashing spaceship to scenes of a Russian peasant’s quiet home, assumed to be from the adult cosmonaut’s childhood memories. As the flashbacks progress in time, though, we are shown that the protagonist’s quiet youth is not necessarily peaceful; he is constantly told fear-inducing lies by his mother. She has told him (translated for us via subtitles) that if the wind changes, his face will freeze in its current state forever. He is also told never to wander because bears are everywhere and they will tear him to pieces. Gypsies kidnap children to use as bear bait. The narrator confesses, “I believed her”. The most profound flashback that portrays his childhood fear is found at the 4 minute 35 second mark - the boy is in bed and his room is dark. Viewers are shown into the mind of the boy as he tries to fall asleep one night, but he cannot because he is terrified. The narrator ponders the chances of forced entry into his room by a bear or gypsy as things in the room twist and turn – unanimated objects come to life. The narration goes on to explain that “if I screamed for help, and the winds changed, my face would freeze; rendering me mute”. So the fear in this flashback does not come from any dramatic scream, but from the image of a child’s face peeking out from pulled-up blankets and wide eyes that silently turn in terror to watch...
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