The Faroe Islands is one of those places that I’d love to go visit: stark, green, rolling hills, with little red-housed fishing villages dotting the shoreline. It just seems like one of those places that is always cold, rainy, and windy. Fun to visit, but I’ll bet you a lot of the young people leave.
Which brings us to Goth Girl Rannvá (Hildigunn Eyðfinsdóttir) and Techno Girl Barba (babe-to-watch Sigri Mitra Gaïni). They are returning home for a visit, or perhaps more like a personal challenge for themselves. They want to prove to themselves that living abroad has changed them for the better, and there is nothing to go back to. They are both estranged from their families, and need only each other for support. But of course they run into shadows from their past, and slowly realize that you can’t escape your memories, even if you want to.
Bye Bye Blue Bird was introduced to the festival audience as Thelma and Louise in the Faroe Islands, but “without the guns”. This is pretty much true, as the girls’ personal journey takes place in the form of a road trip. They hitch with a nice local guy, Rúni, who is surprisingly tolerant of their obnoxious behavior, because it turns out that he knows firsthand how it is to be an outcast. As their journey nears the final destination, dark secrets, that even best friends don’t share, are revealed, and the healing slowly begins.
Plot-wise, Bye Bye Blue Bird is pretty straightforward and predictable, but the director lucked out in finding such dynamic young actresses. Barba is flirtatious, selfish, and stubborn. Rannvá plays along with her hijinks, as a best friend would do, but we slowly see that she is imploding from something in her past creeping up on her. You end up warming to the characters slowly, almost in the same way that straight-man Rúni does.
Though the movie rambles quite a bit like the road they are traveling on, Blue Bird makes for an interesting road trip with curious company and great scenery.