Fly Little Bird

Created by Kate Burke, The Pitch 2024

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Millie is a working mother, who struggles with the mental load and expectations placed on women to “do it all and have it all”. She often acts like a bitter martyr and resents her husband for not understanding all the responsibilities she carries, yet she still wishes she could be present and carefree like him. Instead, she finds solace in her work where she can escape to an imaginary world. Here a cursed bird, transforms into human form at sunrise, unable to interact with her chicks who only fly during the day and sleep at night. The film juxtaposes the animated world and Millie’s, where art reflects life. One day, while juggling the usual chaos of her life, Millie's work deadline is pushed forward, a playdate gets out of hand, and she must prepare and host an important dinner party. When the dinner doesn't go as planned, Millie epically unravels in front of her guests, forcing her to reevaluate her priorities. As the mother bird finally breaks the curse and is able to fly with her chicks, Millie realises that she too has the power to change her own narrative.

Biblical Connection

Based on Luke 10:38-42, Jesus visits the home of sisters Mary and Martha… Motherhood is often considered the ‘unfinished business of feminism’. There is still an unequal division of domestic tasks, and the mental load is carried as a subtle grinding soundtrack throughout the day. Initially, Jesus' response to Martha seems unfair. Who does he expect to ‘miraculously’ prepare the meal? Our character Millie embodies the Martha character, who lives with a feminist sense of injustice. Her unchecked bitterness leads to toxic behavior, as she later snaps at her daughter and berates her husband in front of their guests. However, one of the guests confronts her attitude and choices, and the film concludes with Millie setting aside her to-do list and reconciling with her family. She learns to value relationships above all else. In the time of Jesus, Mary defied expectations and sat at Jesus' feet, despite judgment from others. It was a dramatic move for feminism. Is Millie driven by guilt or a need to please people? The bird analogy reminds us of the intrinsic value God places on each of us (Matthew 10:29-31). Like the animated character, she too metamorphoses from a Martha to a Mary.