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Thursday, April 25 2024

The Lost Thing: Take time to notice small things in life

the lost thing
Photo Credit : Twitter

Based on Shaun Tan’s picture book, The Lost Thing won Best Animated Short at the 2010 Academy Awards. Tim Minchin narrated a short film that was later made from the picture book.

Set in a gloomy Australian future, the Lost Thing tells the tale of a young boy who enjoys collecting bottle tops. From the beginning, we are aware that the main character lives in a dystopian society where everything is monotonous and dull. Unlike others, the main character is different and he is full of curiosity and compassion, just like a small kid. However, he appears to be an outcast or more of a “Lost Thing” in that world.

the lost thing

As the story begins, we see a large number of people going busy doing their regular activities while wearing similar attire. The main character, however, comes across an odd creature one day on the beach, which the narrator refers to as ‘The Lost Thing.’ It resembles a big teapot and has enormous crab claws and blue tentacle legs. No one seems to notice this thing because it is so out of place.

The boy starts playing with it as if it were a dog. He spends hours playing with it out of sympathy before realising that it must be lost.

He searches for a place where the thing belongs. The boy takes it to his scientist friend to analyse, but after running a few experiments, the friend is unsure of what to make of it. The thing is brought home by the narrator to meet his family, where it is allowed to stay in a shed. There, the narrator learns that the creature enjoys eating Christmas decorations. Without giving up hope, he tries to look for a place. In the end, the boy does find a place for “The Thing” among other unique creations. Even though it is a happy ending, the film leaves the audience with plenty of questions.

However, the way the Lost Thing is introduced to the audience is brilliant. The story emphasises the value of curiosity and compassion. It can be noticed that the music highlights the film’s strict environment and conveys a sense of loneliness that the character goes through every single day. The camera angles and cuts in the film make us feel the boy’s concern for the Lost Thing even if we never get inside his head or understand why he cares to look after it.

the lost thing

The Lost Thing also demonstrates many metaphors and symbolic themes throughout the film as it portrays how we have lost sight of the small joys of life. We frequently find ourselves stuck in repetitive cycles of staying with the things we know or are comfortable with instead of finding those new things which will bring colours to our life.

In the film, the lost thing did not have a home, however, the boy simply had to look for it. The same goes for us too since everyone and everything has a place in this world. All we need to do is find it.

You will watch The Lost Thing again since there is always something new to find. It encourages us to slow down and pay attention to the little things in our life.

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Reshma B.

Reshma Babu, a young Postgraduate in Mass Communication and Journalism from St. Aloysius College, Mangalore University, utilises her considerable learned journalistic knowledge and inherent story writing and sub-editing abilities to add value to the company’s media brands and the editorial team. All dimensions of human interaction are her prime focus.

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