Monday, 15 June 2009

Bruno Bozzetto "A Life in a Tin" (1967)

It has been far too long since I featured a Bruno Bozzetto movie. He is after all one of the greatest of directors ( Mister Rossi + Allegro non troppo). One of his earliest works, A Life in a Tin is no mean achievement for in six minutes or so all of life is condensed into a tin. Bruno's point is that one is trapped in boxes from which there is no escape. There may be dreams, signified here by typically lush music from Franco Godi and colour, but monochrome life gets you in the end. And what are these boxes? Variously, school, home, factory, university, church and, finally that little plot of earth we call heaven where glorious colour reigns. With Guido Manuli as animator, the genius, and it is that, of Bruno is an ability to encapsulate big ideas in a humorous and deftly economical style, without at any stage becoming too pompous. A little guy pops his head out of a tin can promptly squashed flat by a big boot. After the credits watch the sun come up, a switch of perspective and it is the heavily laden stomach of our soon to be hero's mum, dad being a little guy who staggers under the weight of his much larger wife. After the birth of baby son, mother and child are whisked about like hot air balloons. Fatherhood is magic, at least in those first few rapturous moments. A few years down the track and our boy is laden down with the weight of school books, a pause to appreciate the wonders of life and mum is screaming at him and pointing at her watch. Black, white and lots of grey replace the colour. For all the humour one appreciates the point of the cartoon. Bruno's work always makes me feel good and makes me think. But mainly laugh. A genius.


nishikataeiga said...

I remember watching this film on 16mm when I was in grade 6 and our class loved it. It was even fun to watch in reverse, because then it would end with the shoe coming off the tin can and the man popping out and smiling. Thanks for writing about this great film - which I still remember vividly even though I haven't seen it in over 20 years!

Ian Lumsden said...

Thanks you for this, Nishikat.
I have to confess that Bruno is a great favourite and also a very personable man, helpful to me on occasions and something of a genius of the genre.

Anonymous said...

Hey, please help me how to find this melody to download or to buy. It's so fantastic.