Director – Wan Guchan – 1963 – China – Cert. N/C U – 36m
A mermaid falls for a poor fisherman and moves in with him arousing the wrath of her sea goddess mother – available to rent online from Friday, February 12th to Wednesday, May 12th in the UK & Ireland as part of the Shanghai Animation Film Studio Retro in the Chinese Cinema Season 2021
A coral island, drifting mists, drifting faerie maidens. Underwater. Every morning, says the female narrator, a fisherman goes out in his boat and sings to these mermaids. But their mother the sea goddess doesn’t like to be disturbed so she hides the girls from him by increasing layers of blue fog.
The fisherman goes about his work and his net keeps picking up a conch shell which he keeps throwing back in the water. When he returns home, there is food prepared on his table, which is odd because he lives alone.
Next day when he’s out, the camera closes in on his simple cottage. Inside there’s an urn, inside the urn floats the golden conch (the image distorted by patterned glass) which lap dissolves into a faerie maiden. She walks round the house, magics a fire alight in his stove and opens the window to marvel at his singing. … Read the rest