Dear Little Lightbird

1971

Dir. Leland Auslender, 16mm Color Sound 00:19:00

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Description

A poignant cinepoem about the life and death of the filmartist's son, born a 'blue baby'; and the insight brought to the father as a result of this tragic experience.

Film-maker Leland Auslander's infant son is a blue baby. Despite constant attention and an emergency trip to Europe for surgery, the child dies at the age of three. Auslander wants to artistically express his feelings over the joy and despair of those three years with Skippy. This film is that expression, beginning with the child's birth and ending with his death in a strange city 10,000 miles from home. It is, of course, very moving and sad, but Auslander moves through the darkness of death to rejoice in the limited days the parents shared with their son. Poetically stated, with shots of birds and animals loved by the child, this is a personal document which is a good example of film as an art form, and also a provocative examination of a family experience. -- CHRISTIAN ADVOCATE.

This excellent film poem delicately and intimately shares the insights of the father (who is also the filmmaker) gained as a result of this tragic experience. Photography, narration, and sound collaborate to produce a moving and meaningful experience of death in a very contemporary Christian manner. Skippy is not really dead; he lives on in his own indestructible spirit and in the memories of those who knew him. DEAR LITTLE LIGHTBIRD is highly recommended for any consideration of the questions of death or childhood illness and parental sufferings with juniors through adults. -- MEDIA FOR CHRISTIAN FORMATION.

[Source: Creative Film Society Catalog, 1975]