Sunday, May 1, 2016

"Third Eye" by Florence + the Machine

The final chapter of what has come to be known as "The Odyssey" by Florence Welch of Florence + the Machine is as spellbinding as the other installments (previously here, here, and here). Here, in a song called "Third Eye," we see Florence in the costume we have seen in prior chapters, performing familiar choreography. But it and the entire story, full of dream-like motifs and psychological symbolism, ends in a kind of breathtaking place: "I'm the same, I'm the same, I'm trying to change..."

All of the chapters have been edited together with never-seen-before dramatic segues and made into an incredible artistic statement: "The Odyssey" film can be seen in its entirety at Florence + the Machine's website, linked below. The chapters contain clues and share a remarkably expressive language of motion and emotion embedded in the choreography. In nearly each chapter where Florence and her doppelgänger wander through different time periods and locations, we seem to be witness to an age-old story of not only male oppression of women, but of interpersonal strife (and sometimes physical violence) on an individual and family level, the inability of so many people and cultures to say what they mean and to really use the time we have here instead of squandering it on petty hatred, grudges, and misunderstandings. Like Florence so aptly and chillingly observes in both parts 1 and 6, "I suppose if you've been through something catastrophic, if you've been through, like a storm or an earthquake together or something horrendous, it would bring you closer together...but what if they are creating the disaster within themselves?...There's this big storm and it's all around us and we're in the middle of it and it's calm, but I can feel it, like it's everywhere..."

I strongly urge you to see "The Odyssey" in its entirety. It's so worth it: enriching, inspiring, thought-provoking...and beautiful.

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