Visio Divina – Movie (Foxtel) – Penguin Bloom

November 2022 – This month’s Visio Divina offering from reviewer Peter Malone msc is PENGUIN BLOOM.  

A film that most audiences would enjoy based on a true story, set in Sydney, coast, its beaches.  A story of family, joy, tragedy, inspiration, hope.

The Bloom family, son, Noah, introspective with two younger brothers raucous-personified!  His parents’ life, friendship since childhood, marriage, surfing and the sea.  The mother, Sam (Naomi Watts, convincing) has fallen from a roof, wheelchair-confined.  Life is disability, pre-occupation with pain.  Noah finds a wounded magpie, brings it into the house, nicknamed Penguin.  Penguin gradually brings Sam out of herself, slow and odd bonding and the suggestion of Sam taking up kayaking – physical and mental strengthening.  We enjoy Rachel House as her demanding coach.  And Penguin?  Recovering, the possibility of being able to fly, to break free, return to the house familiarity, find her own independence?

Photos of the actual family during final credits, Sam herself, her achievement, and the family very much involved in the film’s production.

Australia/UK, 2020, 95 minutes.  See the trailer here.