Let’s Plant A Tree Of Our Life


When thinking about animation, we usually come up with cute, pretty or brave and charismatic characters, with colorful and dynamic scenes. However, there is an animation that gives us inspiration and lessons through characters that are softly and simply portrayed with pastel tones. It is quite contrasting to typical animation. It is a short animation film called, “The Man Who Planted Trees,” produced by Frédéric Back and based on Jean Giono’s original short story created in 1987. It was completed through delicate work over five years and received awards from many international film awards, like the Academy Awards. The main character searches for water while traveling the highlands of Provence, France. He meets an old shepherd, Bouffier, and stays at his home for few days. The land itself is a treeless, desolate valley with no trace of civilization. Bouffier takes no rest and crisscrosses the devastated plateau every day to plant acorns. He alone plants and looks after thousands of trees, such as beeches, oaks and birches, trying to restore the ruined landscape.

Let's Plant A Tree Of Our Life - Wisdom's Webzine


Time passes and the main character enters the First World War, leaving the area. After returning from the war, he visits the devastated plateau again. He visits every year. All of the trees have grown up and this wild land has become a forest with a brook and streams. The main character has admiration and is inspired by the vibrant life of the area. Because of this new life, many thousands of people move to the area over time. As time passes by and the main character continues to visit, he looks upon the rich forest and how peaceful the villagers are in the reconstructed town. He truly praises Bouffier’s patience and conviction. Although it is such a short story, it provides deep inspiration as it harmoniously and beautifully portrays the devoted life of one man and a remarkable change in nature. Bouffier has a great conviction to save the devastated land and constantly plants and looks after the trees. His work might look futile in the short run but his earnest and diligent efforts accumulate and inspire nature. And furthermore, he has changed nature. It is just like the newly harvested fruits and crops that cause joy during the harvest season. They are truly a result of patience and hard work. When human’s will and nature’s will become one, it is not an exaggeration to say that a great creation comes along as a result. Moreover, when consistency and patience are followed, like Bouffier, we will receive an enormous gift from nature. A harvesting season will come when we can appreciate the fruits that have come within the year. Even if not on a grand scale, but rather something small, we can still get beautiful fruits if we have the firm will and effort as communicated through the film. There is a saying “Your beginnings will seem humble, so prosperous will your future be.” From now on, why don’t we be a person who plants trees of life so that we can greet prosperous future days? What you have in front of you is not a dead devastated land. It is a beautiful devastated land which can actually be transformed to a dense forest.