How often do we come into contact with something that we know, beyond all doubt, is meant for us?
Well, yes, it is all for us, but recently, a friend of mine posted a video on Facebook, by the artist Stromae. It is in French, and I don’t understand the words, but the story that the video tells through dance and cinematography is stunning and universal.
In the video, a young boy pleads with his father, who is physically present but emotionally absent.
He watches other young people with their fathers, and mother in one case, as he smiles and looks on hopefully. He then returns to his father to plead with him.
His father stares into space blankly in front of a TV, his eyes glassy, his smile permanent, his hands and arms in the position of a child’s action figure doll. The young boy fantasizes about dancing with his father (in all of the scenarios, the fathers and son share a dance, passing on love and knowledge and worldliness), but in the end pushes a small car with his father smiling blankly in it, into a parking space.
At the end of the video, the boy has given up, and sits next to his father on the couch, taking on the same glassy stare and action figure posture:
The sadness conveyed in this video is palpable.
If the child cannot get what he wants, (his father’s love and attention) he will conform and twist himself into a position so that he can get as close as possible to his desires by settling for just being able to be near him.
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Editor: Catherine Monkman