Before someone in the forum mentioned "Cinema Nirvana" I was already on the way of analysing one of my favourate cartoons.

"Hedgehog in the Fog" (Russian: ???? ? ???????, "Yozhik v tumane") was never among my favourates when I was a child: it had no songs in it, hardly any words at all and although the plot was straighforward I always had a feeling there was more to it only I didn't get it.

It was made at Soyuzmultfilm by Yuri Norstein and his little film team in 1975.

The little hedgehog is on his way through the woods to see his friend the bear cub with whom he fancies drinking tea and counting stars at night. He is so engrossed in the internal dialogue with his friend he does not notice the following him huge owl. All of a sudden he sees a white hoarse in the fog and curious how it feels to be in there enters the fog...

The cartoon with subtitles in English is ca 10 min long and can be viewed at http://<iframe class="restrain" titl...="0"></iframe>

Needless to say I watched the film with new eyes now, years later. We need to get lost in order to find that part of the self (the awareness itself?) , to accept the insecurity of shedding many other layer's of the self. In the fog nothing is solid or clear any longer.

I was also struck by the abundance of water-related imagery (well, water puddle, river, fog, whale/fish) which for me are associated in the first hand with Christianity. However, the idea of the healing powers of water goes back to the prehistoric cults. After his fall into the river the hedgehog gives up grasping for security and comfort of the known and his own understanding of the world ( "dropped off body and mind" ?)

Turn off your mind, relax
and float downstream.
It is not dying ,
It is not dying.

(Beatles, "Tomorrow Never Knows")

Did the hedgehog get baptised in the river or am I reading too much into it??? :wink:

By the end of the film I see the hedgehog as being transformed by his experience. Nothing is the same any longer.
So much more one can say of the rich imagery and its symnbolism (all those creatures in the wood, etc)...

A charming little story, skillfully and beautifully told. I am glad I watched it again now, years later and experiences older. The fears remain basically the same, although the scenery is changing. I now know better than believing the monsters are out there and you can actually run away from them from them. The fog is in my head. Or my head is in the fog. :roll: :lol: