863. My Childhood Mystery Tree – Natalya Mirzoyan

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SUMMARY: A young boy loses his teddy bear and pursues it through a series of alternate realities linked by the branches of a huge tree.

WHY IT’S HERE: The debut film of 29 year old Natalya Mirzoyan, ‘My Childhood Mystery Tree’ has the artistic quality of classic films by the Soviet masters. Although its story treads the familiar ground of a fantasy world linked to the loss of innocence and the shift from childhood into adulthood, ‘My Childhood Mystery Tree’ peppers the formula with visual surprises and an ambiguous ending which combines defiance with acceptance. Of the many worlds the boy visits, perhaps the most haunting is one not unlike our own reality which suddenly becomes sinister when all the other children freeze in motionless poses. Also unforgettable is a malevolent, toy-stealing eagle who snatches precious playthings from helpless hands. Created with pastels on paper, ‘My Childhood Mystery Tree’ is a latter day visual masterpiece which seems to have come right out of the 70s.

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