No intro this week because this lightly bonkers movie speaks for itself.
Severed hand striving against all odds to get across the city and back to its owner? What’s not to love?
I Lost My Body (2019)
A story of Naoufel, a young man who is in love with Gabrielle. In another part of town, a severed hand escapes from a dissection lab, determined to find its body again.
Naoufel is a seemingly directionless young man who delivers pizzas but very badly. One day, in a week of blunders and late deliveries, costing his employer six free pizzas, he meets Gabrielle. Not face to face but through her buildings’ intercom system.
Something about their brief but meaningful interaction sparks Naoufel into action and he desperately tries to find a way to see Gabrielle again. All this plays out in a not too distant series of flashbacks. Meanwhile, in present day, a severed hand begins its perilous quest to be reunited with the rest of its body.
We quickly learn that the owner of the spunky hand is none other than our leading man, who successfully finds a way into Gabrielle’s life via her terminally ill uncle Gigi. Gigi, after a little light persuasion, agrees to give Naoufel a carpentry apprenticeship and also a small room to live in above his workshop. This role not only comes with the opportunity to get to know Gab, it also really suits him.
As a kid he had been determined to have a career as a pianist and an astronaut, though these plans were derailed by the death of both his parents.
While Naoufel charms Gabrielle, he is not altogether forthright about who he really is and his original motivation for taking a job with Gigi and when she finds out their new bonds are tested.
Has he fucked it?
Furthermore, how did he lose his hand in the first place – and will hand get to the end of this journey in one piece?
I love this and I particularly love the hand’s personal rollercoaster ride from the lab back to Naoufel. It’s so simple and yet the level of detail is perfect. We all know from The Addams Family how effective and funny a severed hand can be and it’s no less impactful here, in all its illustrated glory.
I’m not crazy about a pigeon strangulation in the first ten minutes but beyond that there’s a grace to the hand and it’s incredible journey. The scene in which it floats over the city rooftops holding an umbrella is stunning.
The black and white vignettes of Naoufel’s childhood are very touching and make you wonder what could have been had his parents not been killed.
The love story is fine but is kind of creepy. Just be honest dude, how hard can it be? But ultimately this is a story about changing our own fate and letting go of the notion that everything has been pre-decided for you.
I’d like my very own rooftop igloo too, please. Anyone?