What does this film’s combination of rich symbolism, a Christ-like character, and his retelling of the story of the Ark intend to communicate with regard to the passage of time, and its impact on faith? How does the male character’s portrayal of forgetfulness develop the theme of God becoming human? How do both characters represent the fact that we find ourselves ‘thrown’ into the world, not knowing a great deal about who we are, and how we got here? How does the spaceship-like craft that opens and closes the action represent God’s knowledge of the history of the universe? How does the film reflect the director, Mamoru Oshii ’s, own struggle with faith? How does the symbolism of the fossilized remains seen in the film reflect the immensity of the time scale of the universe, and its impacts on faith? What do the fishermen, who pursue shadows of long extinct fish, represent? How does the final shot, showing this world to be located on what appears to be the keel of an immense overturned ark, hearken back to the theme of forgetfulness in the man’s version of the story of the ark, while also giving expression to hope and faith?

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