Did Final Fantasy VII's opening cinematic took inspiration from the movie "Parking" (Jacques Demy) ?

What is the probability that this sequence was used as a reference for FF7's opening cinematic ?

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Molosev

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Hello all,

I'm a basic Final Fantasy VII fan from 1997. I am not an expert of this game although I made some researches.
I hope that we can discuss the following.

I recently came across a movie scene that caught my eye. It is from the movie "Parking" by french director Jacques Demy (1985).
This scene immediately reminded me of Final Fantasy VII's opening cinematic and more particularly the passage where we see Aerith leave the alley to enter the main street.
I propose you to compare the two video sequences on the website https://www.ff7keikoku.com if you want to make your own idea. I also detail the elements that in my opinion are intriguing...

Please, let me know what you think about it !

7766


Découverte de dernière minute :) (ff7.fr)

Question to Naora Yusuke (twitter)

Mother (Jenova) == Mother earth/mother nature ? (thelifestream.net)
Mother (Jenova) == Mother earth/mother nature ? (final fantasy forums)
Mère (Jenova) == mère nature ? (ff7.fr)

Did Jenova left the planet ? (thelifestream.net)

Greek letters at the Gold Saucer (Dionysos - final fantasy forums)

What are these trees from Final Fantasy VII's sleeping forest ? (UBC Botanical Garden)
Twitter (Kazushige Nojima - Don't know if this is related but the dates correspond quite well)

Portrayal of Cloud's Mental State (and eventually Zack) in the Remake (thelifestream.net)

Who owns these wings ? (thelifestream.net)
 
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Dionysos

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Interesting.
I've never heard of this movie. A modern retelling of the myth of Orpheus and Eurydice... I am intrigued.
In this myth Eurydice dies and the poet Orpheus visits the underworld in order to bargain for her life. He strikes a deal that allows him to take Eurydice back to the land of the living, so long as he doesn't look back. Inevitably, Orpheus can't help himself. He looks back to check if his beloved is really there, and Eurydice fades away and is lost forever, her soul belonging to Hades.

To go a little deeper into the comparison, the Eurydice in Parking in this scene is entering the underworld. Aerith, in FFVII, is sniffing a splash of Lifestream (or whatever she's actually doing). Aerith herself will soon die and enter the Lifestream (foreshadowed here). And Cloud will find himself unable to stop looking back (by thinking about losing her) and Aerith remains dead.

Having watched the clip in that link I can see some similarities between that scene and the opening scene with Aerith in Midgar.

I don't know how popular this movie was at the time that FFVII was being developed. Maybe it did have some stylistic influence on the cinematography of this particular scene. If it is more than just a coincidence, I'd say that these influences must have been very minor and related to only a few seconds worth of frames.

I totally agree about the Blade Runner influences in FFVII's Midgar section though. If this movie is a little bit like that then it isn't implausible.
 

Molosev

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It seems obvious to me that with the transition to 3D, the developers needed cinematographic references. Even if Mr Naora invalidated the reference to Blade Runner (I haven't felt the resemblance myself) and he just invalidated this new one, I think there were influences. The pizza thing is not enough ;)
I wonder if there is a public recognition of the "Akira" references... Anyone ?

The work of Jacques Demy was particularly appreciated in Japan in the 60s and 70s with such films as "The Umbrellas of Cherbourg", "The Young Girls of Rochefort" which were very well received. The movie "Parking" (fantasy and musical film) was saved thanks to a Japanese financing.

The movie was not very appreciated in France, I do not know what it was in Japan. Demy seriously thought to stop making films following this failure. After that he still made three films that are not fantasy. He died in 1990. So we can say that this film was in a way his last fantasy.
I know that the name of "Final Fantasy" comes from the fact that the first game of the series was the last chance before the bankruptcy of the development studio.
That's why I think this "wink" during the opening cinematic could be a tribute to the work of Jacques Demy and the difficulty of the creation process in general.
I also think that the film inspired other aspects of the game.

To go a little deeper into the comparison, the Eurydice in Parking in this scene is entering the underworld. Aerith, in FFVII, is sniffing a splash of Lifestream (or whatever she's actually doing). Aerith herself will soon die and enter the Lifestream (foreshadowed here). And Cloud will find himself unable to stop looking back (by thinking about losing her) and Aerith remains dead.
Your vision is very attractive by making Cloud and Aerith the representatives of Orpheus and Eurydice, I'll have to think about it.
I find it difficult to get the storyline of the film (myth) sticking to that of the game.
So I'll go totally freestyle, I think that Midgar is hell and that Aerith enters it willingly from this Mako leak in the alley...
What do you think ?
 
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Dionysos

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It seems obvious to me that with the transition to 3D, the developers needed cinematographic references. Even if Mr Naora invalidated the reference to Blade Runner and he just invalidated this new one, I think there were influences. The pizza thing is not enough ;)
I wonder if there is a public recognition of the "Akira" references... Anyone ?

The work of Jacques Demy was particularly appreciated in Japan in the 60s and 70s with such films as "The Umbrellas of Cherbourg", "The Young Girls of Rochefort" which were very well received. The movie "Parking" (fantasy and musical film) was saved thanks to a Japanese financing.

The movie was not very appreciated in France, I do not know what it was in Japan. Demy seriously thought to stop making films following this failure. After that he still made three films that are not fantasy. He died in 1990. So we can say that this film was in a way his last fantasy.
I know that the name of "Final Fantasy" comes from the fact that the first game of the series was the last chance before the bankruptcy of the development studio.
That's why I think this "wink" during the opening cinematic could be a tribute to the work of Jacques Demy and the difficulty of the creation process in general.
I also think that the film inspired other aspects of the game.



Your vision is very attractive by making Cloud and Aerith the representatives of Orpheus and Eurydice, I'll have to think about it.
I find it difficult to get the storyline of the film (myth) sticking to that of the game.
So I'll go totally freestyle, I think that Midgar is hell and that Aerith enters it willingly from this Mako leak in the alley...
What do you think ?
Akira references such as the motorbike and cyberpunk themes? I can see possible influences, but I don’t know about a public recognition. They sometimes admit these things (such as them admitting that Dark Crystal inspired aspects of FFIX) but a lot of the time these things get lost. A lot of people introduce different ideas and I don't think they always record or consult each other on where they come from. Sometimes they might risk the wrath of other companies if they openly acknowledge that their ideas have been inspired by other works of fiction.

That’s interesting to learn about Parking being saved by Japanese financial backing. Maybe it was more popular in Japan than it was even in Europe.

As for Cloud = Orpheus and Aerith = Eurydice, I was just rolling with the idea. I don’t believe that they are an exact match (they aren't because Cloud isn't very musical in the slightest), but it was interesting to dive into that interpretation considering that Cloud does visit the Lifestream without dying (as Orpheus entered the underworld), but Tifa manages to support him so that he regains his sanity rather than loses it (unlike Orpheus after Eurydice’s shade vanishes forever).

It is also an interesting angle considering that Aerith does die and enter into the underworld of that game (the Lifestream). But like your interpretation of the opening scene in Midgar, she’s also already in the ‘underworld’ in a sense at the beginning of the game if we take Midgar (in particular the seedy parts of the city) as a grim, dystopian crime-riddled metaphor. Shinra is killing the planet and Midgar (which can be seen as representing the realm of men at large due to its inspiration from Midgard in Norse mythology) is already too far gone. Due to the pumping and mismanagement of the Lifestream, the ‘underworld’ has spread to the surface, creating a hell on earth, and it only threatens to spread and pollute the entire planet.

I definitely recognise the Hadean references in Midgar.

I believe that Midgar = Hades/Hell, Midgar = Midgard, Midgar = Disney’s Epcot (see @Linnaete's article in our Timber Maniacs issue 2 page 26-30), and Midgar = pizza (see here) are all valid interpretations and this is why Midgar is probably the most iconic Final Fantasy city to me.

There's so much going on in Midgar. I really am looking forward to how the Remake will explore Midgar's themes.
 

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I totally understand that they do not aknowledge all the references because, as you said, intellectual property issues are frightening. Moreover, it is legitimate not to reveal all the fabrications secrets of a work, because it could lose its magic, its mystery. Maybe even some parts of the remake plot could be revealed prematurely ;)

A lot of people introduce different ideas and I don't think they always record or consult each other on where they come from.
Do you talk about developers bringing ideas or is it about fans of the game sharing discoveries?

There have been several connections between Demy and the japanese culture, including the movie "Lady Oscar" that he made and which is an adaptation of the manga "Berusaiyu no Bara" by Riyoko Ikeda. I still have to watch this movie.

As for Cloud = Orpheus and Aerith = Eurydice, I was just rolling with the idea. I don’t believe that they are an exact match (they aren't because Cloud isn't very musical in the slightest), but it was interesting to dive into that interpretation considering that Cloud does visit the Lifestream without dying (as Orpheus entered the underworld), but Tifa manages to support him so that he regains his sanity rather than loses it (unlike Orpheus after Eurydice’s shade vanishes forever).
It is also an interesting angle considering that Aerith does die and enter into the underworld of that game (the Lifestream). But like your interpretation of the opening scene in Midgar, she’s also already in the ‘underworld’ in a sense at the beginning of the game if we take Midgar (in particular the seedy parts of the city) as a grim, dystopian crime-riddled metaphor. Shinra is killing the planet and Midgar (which can be seen as representing the realm of men at large due to its inspiration from Midgard in Norse mythology) is already too far gone. Due to the pumping and mismanagement of the Lifestream, the ‘underworld’ has spread to the surface, creating a hell on earth, and it only threatens to spread and pollute the entire planet.
You're right, Cloud is neither a musician (even if the singer of the movie is not very good either), nor a charismatic leader. At first Demy wanted David Bowie as Orpheus (There's a reference to Bowie in Final fantasy VII, under the guise of the enemies Christopher and Gighee).
But there is a character who can embody a kind of rock star in the game, Sephiroth. He is a soldier admired by young people, including Cloud. In the movie, Orpheus is murdered by an admirer (the Maenads in the myth). In the game Cloud ends up killing his idol (or the dream entity that looks like Sephiroth).

Moreover, assuming that everyone is already dead in this world (see my interpretation of the opening scene in Midgar ), it is Sephiroth who seeks a person (his mother Jenova) but who he cannot bring with him and is consecutively sent back to the lifestream. As he turns back to face Cloud ("and maybe the remains of Jenova in the distance").
Ok this is more like a son to mother kind of love rather than something between lovers, but this is a most important interpersonal bond in the game.
Maybe Cloud is more Lady Oscar and Aerith more Jenova ! (or is it going to far... lol)
Well I agree all this is not very convincing nor very well documented, but it could be a track.

Your analysis of the pizza is very interesting, it is a very bad advertisement for Pizza Hut lol !
I also thought that Midgar could be Paris (in addition to Tokyo, Midgard, London, New York, Epcot,...) since the movie is partly in Paris and that one of the gates of hell is in the underground car park of Notre Dame Cathedral (an other one is in the Bercy theater's underground car park). This church, located on L'Ile de la Cité, in the middle of the river Seine, is surrounded by the eight main districts that make up downtown.

PS : Kudos for this very nice "Timber Maniacs" publication !
 
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The Witch

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no way is that a coincidence. i never knew. now i gotta research this film more.

EDIT:

Interesting.
I've never heard of this movie. A modern retelling of the myth of Orpheus and Eurydice... I am intrigued.
In this myth Eurydice dies and the poet Orpheus visits the underworld in order to bargain for her life. He strikes a deal that allows him to take Eurydice back to the land of the living, so long as he doesn't look back. Inevitably, Orpheus can't help himself. He looks back to check if his beloved is really there, and Eurydice fades away and is lost forever, her soul belonging to Hades.

To go a little deeper into the comparison, the Eurydice in Parking in this scene is entering the underworld. Aerith, in FFVII, is sniffing a splash of Lifestream (or whatever she's actually doing). Aerith herself will soon die and enter the Lifestream (foreshadowed here). And Cloud will find himself unable to stop looking back (by thinking about losing her) and Aerith remains dead.

Having watched the clip in that link I can see some similarities between that scene and the opening scene with Aerith in Midgar.
this is so interesting to me.
 

Molosev

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no way is that a coincidence. i never knew. now i gotta research this film more.
Happy to hear that I'm not the only one fully convinced :)

What do you think of the "Easter Egg" that I think I found ? Related ?
Do you read the same as me in capital red letters ?

Something I just noticed while watching "Inside Final Fantasy VII" again.
Naora said he did not want the villain to live in a castle, which is why he installed President Shinra in an office building. The villain (Hades) in the movie looks like the boss of a company. He works at a desk and contrary to the idea that one could make of the life of the king of hell, he seems to have to deal with boring paperwork all day long.

I'm beginning to think that the movie material could have been used as a seed for the development of some of the game's concepts (opening cinematic visuals, main musical theme, character design, environment design, background scenario, symbolism, even the shape and colors of the materias ? ).

7780
 
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Molosev

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I noticed a detail that could consolidate the link between Aerith and the mythical character Eurydice (and perhaps Izanami by analogy). Eurydice is a Dryad, a nymph of trees and oak in particular. It seems that the sleeping forest is composed of a single species of tree. The shape of the trunks and leaves make me think a lot of oaks. If this is the case there is strong reason to think that the scene of the film did not only serve as a visual reference for the opening cinematic, it also served to print the theme of the myth in the game. In my opinion...

What do you think, are these oaks ?

448.PNG
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Dionysos

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I noticed a detail that could consolidate the link between Aerith and the mythical character Eurydice (and perhaps Izanami by analogy). Eurydice is a Dryad, a nymph of trees and oak in particular. It seems that the sleeping forest is composed of a single species of tree. The shape of the trunks and leaves make me think a lot of oaks. If this is the case there is strong reason to think that the scene of the film did not only serve as a visual reference for the opening cinematic, it also served to print the theme of the myth in the game. In my opinion...

What do you think, are these oaks ?

View attachment 7914View attachment 7915
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I'm not good with trees so I cannot tell you with any certainty if the trees in the Sleeping Forest are supposed to be oak trees or not. I know that their form altered significantly by the release of Advent Children as they have been re-imagined with glowing white bark possessing magical properties.

If they were oak trees in the original game, that is interesting with the theory discussed in this thread of Eurydice being like Aerith. It is in the Sleeping Forest that Cloud experiences a dream / vision of Aerith both before and after her death (in the original game and in Advent Children). The forest is enchanted in the original game too, for nobody can pass through it as it endlessly repeats itself like a twisted nightmare.

As you say, Eurydice was an oak nymph. There were traditions of sacred, magical oak forests in ancient Greece. An important real-life sanctuary during the classical period was a grove at Dodona which housed the sacred oaks of Zeus. The well-respected priests here related prophesies by listening to the rustling of the leaves of the oak trees themselves! In mythology, a piece of wood cut from Dodona's sacred grove was sometimes considered to have been brought aboard the Argo (Jason's ship) as its prow, granting the ship itself the ability to speak. The bard Orpheus was amongst her crew (making him one of the Argonauts).

If we roll with this loose interpretation, maybe there is an additional layer of relevance for the placement of the Lunar Harp in FFVII's Sleeping Forest (this being the only item which is known to render the forest safe to pass through). Orpheus was, after all, a skilled musician (particularly with the lyre, a small instrument related to the harp). He was the rockstar of Greek mythology (even down to the untimely death aspect....). His unrivalled musical prowess drowned out the deadly song of the Sirens, and he even calmed Cerberus and the Furies with his music in some versions of his myth.

That a harp is the only thing that can calm the Sleeping Forest so that the player can pass through it may not be an intentional reference to Orpheus and Eurydice, but I like the idea. When the party manages to pass through the forest, they enter the ancient, ruined city of the Cetra located in a valley / giant crack in the earth (a reminder of mortality and impermanence, so it is also a little bit like visiting the Underworld - only loosely speaking). Here they reunite with Aerith and then lose her again (c.f. Eurydice in the Underworld).

It's certainly interesting to think about as a parallel.
 

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I asked the question on a botany forum and the overall answer is that it is not about oaks (fortunately Aerith is still a nymph of the trees ^_^).
Botanical thread

I wonder if Vincent Valentine could be the character that comes closest to Orpheus. He is apparently the only character that is deeply in love in the compilation. Although Lucrecia seems to have ended their relation (I have not yet fully studied the case of Lucrécia), they surely had a romance.
In addition he is a musician! Yes that's right ! :P If we take again the title of the game "Dirge of Cerberus", there is a musical reference here. So one could eventually read that Vincent is the musician behind his instrument, a three-gun revolver called Cerberus. At the same time we could also think that he is the king of hell.
I noticed that there is a Valentine sign (My Bloody Valentine) on the scene that resembles the movie. Moreover Vincent is wearing a red band around his head, like Orpheus in the movie.

I had not thought about the Lunar Harp, I really like your interpretation in relation to the myth of Orpheus.
 
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Dionysos

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I asked the question on a botany forum and the overall answer is that it is not about oaks (fortunately Aerith is still a nymph of the trees ^_^).
Botanical thread

I wonder if Vincent Valentine could be the character that comes closest to Orpheus. He is apparently the only character that is deeply in love in the compilation. Although Lucrecia does not seem to share his feelings (I have not yet fully studied the case of Lucrécia) their relation seems very strong.
In addition he is a musician! Yes that's right ! :P If we take again the title of the game "Dirge of Cerberus", there is a musical reference here. So one could eventually read that Vincent is the musician behind his instrument, a three-gun revolver called Cerberus. At the same time we could also think that he is the king of hell.
I noticed that there is a Valentine sign (My Bloody Valentine) on the scene that resembles the movie. Moreover Vincent is wearing a red band around his head, like Orpheus in the movie.

I had not thought about the Lunar Harp, I really like your interpretation in relation to the myth of Orpheus.
They did great to answer all of that in such technical detail (whilst still making it easy for non-botanists to understand)!

As they conclude, the trees are likely fictional, artistic representations. This isn't surprising as I doubt the artists were botanists. But that oak is mentioned as a minor reference point might still be relevant to your theory.

I personally feel like the game intended there to be greater canopy coverage, but that this was difficult to render. It is, after all, supposed to be an impenetrable forest in the game. I think the botanists were mostly taking your aerial-view screenshot for that when suggesting a -30% canopy cover rather than the screenshot at the player-level.

This screenshot suggests a denser forest to me than the other:


I think the game is inconsistent here, like it is in many aspects. Part of its charm, I think!

Nevertheless, as suspected they are not strictly oak trees. Just a made-up tree, but there might be some oak-like qualities to them in a vague sense. Though really the existence of the forest in general is enough for your interpretation.

The idea of Vincent as Orpheus is fascinating. I hadn't really considered the name Dirge of Cerberus before…
In some versions of the myth of Orpheus' trip to the Underworld, Orpheus played music to calm Cerberus in order to enter without being devoured at the gates.

A dirge is a lament for the dead, so that is particularly fascinating when considering Orpheus’ sad songs for Eurydice after her death alongside Vincent's sadness over the untimely end of the woman he loved: Lucrecia Crescent.

That's if Lucrecia is even dead. Her crystallisation in a cave puts her in an unreachable state between life and death. Almost like Eurydice while being led out of the Underworld (before Orpheus looked back), if you like.

Similarly, Vincent being an 'undead' character of sorts turns out to be a hodgepodge of different horror movie references. Before the party find him he sleeps in a coffin in a creepy mad-sciencey basement (which is itself located in a creepy haunted mansion), where he has slumbered for a generation. After the party wakes him up, they find that he looks like a vampire. His limit break metamorphoses also reference horror franchise characters such as Frankenstein (through Death Gigas), Jason Voorhees (through Hellmasker) and generic 'bat-demon from Hell' imagery (through Chaos). Along with sharing his name with a widely praised horror actor, Vincent Price, FFVII's Vincent's entire being is drenched in horror.


Quite fitting for a character like this to be associated with the Underworld and with Cerberus. He is, after all, a character who has died and passed beyond the gates of the dead, only to later return to a world where the woman he loves can no longer be there.

I don't know about Vincent being a 'King of Hell', but he certainly has a command over monsters. Much like Orpheus with his music being able to tame and command wild beasts (in our mortal realm) and to calm the monsters of the Underworld enough for him to complete his objectives.
 

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Yeah I'll always have a doubt about these trees not beeing oaks...

I love the way you're developping/questionning/challenging/completing my assumptions, always in a relevant and pleasant way.

I totally agree that the relation between Vincent and Lucrecia is now fascinating. It may well be the core of the entire plot.
Now it's obious that Vincent is not in love with Aerith (who could be seen as the evident Eurydice at first glance). But still, she's the one mirroring the Eurydice from the movie. This makes me think that there's a strong link between Lucrecia and Aerith and then Ifalna as a result. The consequences of this discovery could really be massive if one considers seriously questioning the plot of the game.

I willingly admit that to declare Vincent as the king of hell is a little presumptuous and way too precocious.
 
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Dionysos

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Yeah I'll always have a doubt about these trees not beeing oaks...

I love the way you're developping/questionning/challenging/completing my assumptions, always in a relevant and pleasant way.

I totally agree that the relation between Vincent and Lucrecia is now fascinating. It may well be the core of the entire plot.
Now it's obious that Vincent is not in love with Aerith (who could be seen as the evident Eurydice at first glance). But still, she's the one mirroring the Eurydice from the movie. This makes me think that there's a strong link between Lucrecia and Aerith and then Ifalna as a result. The consequences of this discovery could really be massive if one considers seriously questioning the plot of the game.

I willingly admit that to declare Vincent as the king of hell is a little presumptuous and way too precocious.
No problem at all!
I really love these discussions too! It's nice to find other people who like diving deep into all of this, so your presence on this forum is appreciated.

On the possible link between Lucrecia and Aerith there are a few points where they might connect.

When Hojo got Lucrecia pregnant with Sephiroth, Hojo injected her with Jenova cells. Jenova was originally believed to have been the corpse of a Cetra (Aerith's ancestors) and so was thought to be terrestrial in origin rather than extraterrestrial. The initial error on this identification was made in earnest by Professor Gast (Aerith's father) and it was his research which inspired Hojo to inject Lucrecia with the cells to create a super-human.

When Gast realised that Jenova was an alien, he abandoned the project. He met and rescued a real Cetra descendant (Ifalna) and fell in love with her leading to the conception of Aerith.

As we know, Hojo would eventually track down and murder Gast, co-opt his research and capture Ifalna and Aerith. Hojo cared little about the true origins of Jenova. He was merely curious.

So Lucrecia is tied to Aerith's storyline via Aerith's father and the mad experiments of Hojo (which both of them have been a part of).

Both Lucrecia and Aerith end tragically but in a way which offers something to others. Aerith dies and drops the Holy materia and also helps channel the Lifestream and empower Holy to defeat Meteor at the end. Lucrecia is sealed inside a crystal-coma, but not before she helps preserve Vincent after he is shot so that he doesn't completely die (making Vincent who is today).

The tragic 'death' (or coma in Lucrecia's case) is the main Eurydice parallel. With both Vincent and Cloud being a bit like Orpheus to their respective 'Eurydices' in the manner we have entertained in this thread.

Both Vincent and Cloud have had visions of their 'Eurydice' and visited the Underworld (metaphorically speaking) in order to attempt to access her. Vincent visited Lucrecia in a cave, Cloud went back through the Sleeping Forest and into the Forgotten Capital in order to get close to Aerith again following her death (and to find Holy). Neither of them can successfully return with their 'Eurydice' alive and well behind them. They're both gone.
 

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It's nice to find other people who like diving deep into all of this.
I agree :-)

When Hojo got Lucrecia pregnant with Sephiroth, Hojo injected her with Jenova cells. Jenova was originally believed to have been the corpse of a Cetra (Aerith's ancestors) and so was thought to be terrestrial in origin rather than extraterrestrial. The initial error on this identification was made in earnest by Professor Gast (Aerith's father) and it was his research which inspired Hojo to inject Lucrecia with the cells to create a super-human.

When Gast realised that Jenova was an alien, he abandoned the project. He met and rescued a real Cetra descendant (Ifalna) and fell in love with her leading to the conception of Aerith.
During Sephiroth's reading of Gast's research, we learn that the latter says that the body found in a stratum (is it at the northern crater?) dating back thousands of years is a Cetra. As he appears to be a serious scientist, I attach great importance to this conclusion.
I wonder when he or anyone else realizes this mistake. As you say, "When Gast realised that Jenova was an alien, he abandoned the project.", I'm sure you know a source that mentions it. Please, can you tell me?


I find it really strange that Gast meets and saves the last Cetra survivor just after leaving the Shinra research pole... I find this event quite awkward scenariowise. Unless this clumsiness is a way to make Ifalna suspicious ..
What are you doing, Profes...... I mean, honey?
Wouldn't that be a clue that she's trying to play a character?
I've already decided! If it's a girl, then it'll be Aeris. That's that!
Ifalna
You are SO selfish! But Aeris is a good name!
Hee hee... it's a good name, considering it came out of that forgetful head of yours!
Would this mean that she suggested him the name in some way?
Icicle Inn script

A remark a bit trivial. Lucrecia, Sephiroth Ifalna and Aerith seem to have the same hair implantation. Would not they all be genetically linked?

I went through the scenario of the game in one go using a youtube video. Aerith seems to really lead the group (in duet with the pursuit of Sephiroth) and when she disappears the team is lost without a compass. Only when they look back on her legacy (via Bugenhagen) do they determine the rest of their itinerary.
Sephiroth repeatedly treats Cloud a puppet, which he certainly is. I have never seen him having personal convictions. He is simply driven by the events of the game, just like the player.

Both Lucrecia and Aerith end tragically but in a way which offers something to others. Aerith dies and drops the Holy materia and also helps channel the Lifestream and empower Holy to defeat Meteor at the end. Lucrecia is sealed inside a crystal-coma, but not before she helps preserve Vincent after he is shot so that he doesn't completely die (making Vincent who is today).

The tragic 'death' (or coma in Lucrecia's case) is the main Eurydice parallel. With both Vincent and Cloud being a bit like Orpheus to their respective 'Eurydices' in the manner we have entertained in this thread.

Both Vincent and Cloud have had visions of their 'Eurydice' and visited the Underworld (metaphorically speaking) in order to attempt to access her. Vincent visited Lucrecia in a cave, Cloud went back through the Sleeping Forest and into the Forgotten Capital in order to get close to Aerith again following her death (and to find Holy). Neither of them can successfully return with their 'Eurydice' alive and well behind them. They're both gone.
I understand the parallel you make between Aerith / Eurydice and Cloud / Orpheus, but personally I have never seen these two characters in love . I think Cloud sees her more as a spiritual guide (FF7), a mother (AC).
 
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During Sephiroth's reading of Gast's research, we learn that the latter says that the body found in a stratum (is it at the northern crater?) dating back thousands of years is a Cetra. As he appears to be a serious scientist, I attach great importance to this conclusion.
I wonder when he or anyone else realizes this mistake. As you say, "When Gast realised that Jenova was an alien, he abandoned the project.", I'm sure you know a source that mentions it. Please, can you tell me?
I think essentially Gast had discovered Jenova within the archaeological context of a Cetra site (at the Northern Crater) and so initially concluded that she must have been Cetra, particularly considering her humanlike appearance.

That’s not an illogical conclusion for a scientist to make as he based it on the evidence available to him at the time. I don't believe it reflects badly on him that he made that call. It would have been wilder and significantly non-scientific if his first reaction upon encountering the body was to label it an alien organism. None of the evidence pointed to that at that time. That would be like us digging up a mummy in Egypt and then proposing in a paper that it might be a Martian.

Gast couldn’t have known. But upon examining it further, he realised that the cells didn’t behave like terrestrial cells, and that the lifeform was evidently not human. Upon realising his mistake he wanted to stop experimenting with Jenova, but Hojo didn’t.

We know very little about Ifalna, only that Shinra had her captured and was going to experiment on her as they would with Aerith later on. When Gast departed Midgar in order to continue his research on the true Cetra (not Jenova) at the Icicle Inn, he rescued Ifalna from Shinra’s clutches. I thought I'd remembered that from Crisis Core remarks or remarks in the original game, but I'm not sure where it is stated explicitly within them. I've done some research and it seems it is mentioned in the Crisis Core Complete Guide though.

It is from Ifalna and his interviews with her (which the player can watch at Icicle Inn) that he learns the preserved oral history of the Cetra regarding Jenova. So it is learned that Jenova could shapeshift and used this ability to her advantage in tricking the Cetra. She appears as their loved ones so that she could get close to them, and she also infected them and turned some of them into monsters. It is possible that the preserved state we find Jenova in is simply the form she took when she was pretending to be a Cetra, hence her humanoid appearance (and also explaining how she posthumously tricked Gast 2,000 years later).

It is implied that Gast may still have been doing research for Shinra at Icicle Inn as he says in the footage that he’s going to fully sever his ties with the company only when Hojo storms the room and demands to take Aerith and Ifalna. However, he is definitely in hiding while doing his research at Icicle Inn. When Hojo and Shinra infantrymen invade his home he is surprised they discovered him. Maybe he hoped one day to complete his research and then return to Midgar with a “Ha! Gotcha!” research paper and overthrow Hojo and reinstate himself as lead scientist with a workable, more ethical alternative to the Jenova project.

But Hojo murdered him before anything like that could happen.


I find it really strange that Gast meets and saves the last Cetra survivor just after leaving the Shinra research pole... I find this event quite awkward scenariowise. Unless this clumsiness is a way to make Ifalna suspicious ..

Wouldn't that be a clue that she's trying to play a character?

Would this mean that she suggested him the name in some way?
Icicle Inn script
It is possible that Ifalna is behaving suspiciously and had ulterior motives, but I think it is more likely that her remarks refer to the change in their relationship.

When Ifalna ran away with Gast to Icicle Inn she was first of all simply the person he was interviewing. Their relationship was professional, though friendly. Ifalna calling him 'Professor' during this period would have been appropriate.

Fast-forward to this scene and by this time they are romantically involved, so she is just getting used to calling him an endearing nickname ('honey', in this instance). Gast is now her lover so the change in intimacy in their relationship means she can call him sweeter names, but she isn't used to it yet and almost called him 'Professor' again.


A remark a bit trivial. Lucrecia, Sephiroth Ifalna and Aerith seem to have the same hair implantation. Would not they all be genetically linked?
For Aerith and Sephiroth + Lucrecia, not genetically speaking. I don't think Lucrecia had any acknowledged relation to Gast or Ifalna, which means she wouldn't be linked to Aerith in that way.

Stylistically, I can see the resemblance. Her similarity in hairstyle might just be to make us (the player) think of her as an Aerith-like figure who ended up in a tricky situation and tried to help someone (Vincent in Lucrecia's case). Although Lucrecia is a darker character and at times morally grey, unlike Aerith.

Similarities between Sephiroth and Lucrecia, however, are understandable. Lucrecia is the woman who carried Sephiroth in her womb and gave birth to him. She was his biological mother, so he's bound to resemble her in part. I don't know how much of Sephiroth is Jenova, so let us just say that Sephiroth has three parents: two mothers (Lucrecia and Jenova) and one father (Hojo).


I understand the parallel you make between Aerith / Eurydice and Cloud / Orpheus, but personally I have never seen these two characters in love . I think Cloud sees her more as a spiritual guide (FF7), a mother (AC).
That’s up to player interpretation.

Creators have their own opinions too, but the original game allowed the player to tailor their own experience in that way (with the date mechanics). I’ve always gone for Tifa more than Aerith, but regardless of what the player thinks and does about it there’s no denying that Cloud cared deeply for Aerith (romance or not) and that he severely regretted her death in a way which almost incapacitated him and continued to haunt him for the rest of his life (as seen in later Compilation material). I don’t think his feelings have to be romantic in order for the Eurydice comparison to be relevant, though the romantic angle would certainly strengthen it.

The more important aspect of the Orpheus myth isn't that Orpheus was in love with Eurydice, but that he dared attempt the forbidden act of going to the Underworld without dying, breaking into the home of Hades and bargaining for the soul of someone close to him (romantic love is just a particularly powerful motivator, but not the only kind). This was a huge transgression against the natural order of things, but lots of people would have sympathy as they'd likely wish they could do the same to restore someone they loved who had died. Like many people in mourning, people can find it very difficult to let go or to come to grips with the situation but, as the myth demonstrates, these things can't really be undone. If we look back in desperation expecting to find them or wishing to undo that which has already been done, we're only going to get a fleeting glimpse before they are gone again, but if we move on forward we might carry them with us for the rest of our lives. This is a very difficult thing to do, so I think the Orpheus myth can symbolise the grief process quite efficiently.
 
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Your presentation/analysis seems to me very faithful to the storyline presented.
I think essentially Gast had discovered Jenova within the archaeological context of a Cetra site (at the Northern Crater)
That is a possibility, but I have not find any indication that points the Northern Crater as the discovery site (I might well be wrong).
Sephiroth and Cloud at the mansion
If the northern crater had been a research site, I think the "promised land" would logically have been found much earlier without the need of all these experiments.

But there's another crater on the planet. The lake beside Lucrecia's cave quite looks like an impact site in my opinion.
In the videotapes produced by Gast and Ifalna, we are told that there was first a violent impact to the Knowlespole which seriously injured the planet, then after a certain time that a person has arrived and worked to infect and disorient the population. Which would indicate a two-step attack. Maybe "Jenova" did not arrive on the back of the first meteor, but rather on a second...

In any case I think there would be no special interest in confining an evil entity specifically to the place where it landed (crashed). Even more especially in the heart of the planet's injury (but maybe they did not have a choice ...) Yet if there is one person who seems to have been confined in the game, it is Lucrecia in a crystal (lucrecia's cave).
Sometimes this cave seems to be a place that Grimoire Valentine introduces to Lucrecia (Dirge of Cerberus flashback), sometimes it's a place where she seems to wander alive (Final Fantasy VII) or left (Final Fantasy VII), sometimes a place where she seems confined inside a crystal (Dirge of Cerberus). Maybe the definition of Jenova's inconsistency... (Just a guess, Lucrecia as "Jenova" are said to be co-mothers of Sephiroth, but maybe Hojo did not need to inject additional cells/genes in the process except his own (or Vincent's, who knows really))

For Aerith and Sephiroth + Lucrecia, not genetically speaking. I don't think Lucrecia had any acknowledged relation to Gast or Ifalna, which means she wouldn't be linked to Aerith in that way.
When we enter this cave for the first time accompanied by Vincent, Lucrecia is present and a flashback is launched quickly. This flashback seems to be from Vincent's memory and intended to enlighten the player on a particular event. In my opinion it is not a dream or any manipulation intended to disorient one of the characters of the game, "Jenova" is not at work in this memory. I see it pretty pure.

It seems that this scene shows a moment quite close to the procreation of Sephiroth, showing the scientists approaching the entrance of the mansion, followed by the scene of rupture between Lucrecia and Vincent. It seems to me to be able to notice three scientists, Gast leading the way (brown trousers), Hojo (black trousers) and then Ifalna (long hair).

At one point, Vincent said this sentence "I was unable to stop professor Gast and Hojo. And Lucrecia ... I was unable to stop them", which would seriously imply Gast's responsibility in the final phase. He does not look particularly disturbed or ready to flee but rather to lead the party serenely.
At least this should be able to confirm the relationship between Gast and Lucrecia.

Something else. Maybe just a visual effect used on different characters for no plot related reason. Aerith and Sephiroth appear to have whitening syndrome. First Aerith (fade to white) as she announces her departure during Cloud's dream (Sleeping Forest), then Sephiroth (fade from white) as he makes his big return at the time of the final battle. I find it strange that this effect is used "straight"for the departure of an important character and "inverted" for the return of another one, it makes me think that there could be a collusion between Aerith and Sephiroth, other than capillary. ;)

It is possible that Ifalna is behaving suspiciously and had ulterior motives, but I think it is more likely that her remarks refer to the change in their relationship.

When Ifalna ran away with Gast to Icicle Inn she was first of all simply the person he was interviewing. Their relationship was professional, though friendly. Ifalna calling him 'Professor' during this period would have been appropriate.

Fast-forward to this scene and by this time they are romantically involved, so she is just getting used to calling him an endearing nickname ('honey', in this instance). Gast is now her lover so the change in intimacy in their relationship means she can call him sweeter names, but she isn't used to it yet and almost called him 'Professor' again.
I totally understand that this scene is meant to be read like this.

But I find it rather complicated for Ifalna (last representative of Cetra and therefore very attached to the planet) to trust a scientist belonging to the most harmful organization in regard to the planet's health. In addition a scientist who plans to continue his researches on her in a way similar to the process which led to the birth of Sephiroth (procreation of Aerith). Ok, he apparently helped her escape from the clutches of Shinra ...

Following the murder of Gast by Hojo's orders, Ifalna and Aerith captives are supposed to return to the research facility (Midgar or Nibelheim I don't know) to undergo new experiments. But that never seems to have happened, at least I did not find any traces. Worse, later Ifalna returns to Midgar in order to save her daughter apparently! Quite strange and risky idea it seems to me, a bit like jumping into the mouth of the wolf .

That’s up to player interpretation.

Creators have their own opinions too, but the original game allowed the player to tailor their own experience in that way (with the date mechanics). I’ve always gone for Tifa more than Aerith, but regardless of what the player thinks and does about it there’s no denying that Cloud cared deeply for Aerith (romance or not) and that he severely regretted her death in a way which almost incapacitated him and continued to haunt him for the rest of his life (as seen in later Compilation material). I don’t think his feelings have to be romantic in order for the Eurydice comparison to be relevant, though the romantic angle would certainly strengthen it.

The more important aspect of the Orpheus myth isn't that Orpheus was in love with Eurydice, but that he dared attempt the forbidden act of going to the Underworld without dying, breaking into the home of Hades and bargaining for the soul of someone close to him (romantic love is just a particularly powerful motivator, but not the only kind). This was a huge transgression against the natural order of things, but lots of people would have sympathy as they'd likely wish they could do the same to restore someone they loved who had died. Like many people in mourning, people can find it very difficult to let go or to come to grips with the situation but, as the myth demonstrates, these things can't really be undone. If we look back in desperation expecting to find them or wishing to undo that which has already been done, we're only going to get a fleeting glimpse before they are gone again, but if we move on forward we might carry them with us for the rest of our lives. This is a very difficult thing to do, so I think the Orpheus myth can symbolise the grief process quite efficiently.
I really like your analysis. This seems to be the important message of the myth.
I note here a remark that I have not yet developed. The Greek legend of Orpheus and Eurydice has much in common with the legend of Japan's creation (the story of Izanagi and Izanami) and probably predates it. It is possible that the same message is implied in this second myth too, altough the global story seems much complicated as it involves the creation of Japan and that the betrayal act commited by Izanagi (attempt to see Izanami in darkness by lighting a fire ) leads to a fight between the two party.
 
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That is a possibility, but I have not find any indication that points the Northern Crater as the discovery site (I might well be wrong).
Sephiroth and Cloud at the mansion
If the northern crater had been a research site, I think the "promised land" would logically have been found much earlier without the need of all these experiments.
You’re right. I don’t think it is entirely clear where the excavation took place by which Shinra discovered Jenova. I think it is widely assumed by the fandom to have been in the Knowlespole region (Northern Continent) somewhere as that is where Jenova focused her assault on the Planet. The only location we know for sure that Jenova ever visited was the Knowlespole, but Ifalna’s words suggest that Jenova had turned her attentions towards ‘other Cetra clans’ as well, so she may well have travelled.

I cannot find a reference in the script of the game for where Jenova was actually confined by the surviving Cetra, nor where Shinra dug her up 2,000 years later. It appears to be vague and ambiguous.

In Advent Children the Turks discover Jenova’s head in the North Crater, but that’s because Jenova ended up there during the course of the original game (and was defeated there alongside Sephiroth). Jenova’s head was missing from Midgar during the game, but that’s because Sephiroth took it with him when he plunged into the Lifestream at the climax of the Nibelheim incident. It’s possible that people have merged the two excavations in their minds.

So there may be room to imagine an alternative location to the North Crater as the place where Shinra first encountered the entity's remains.


But there's another crater on the planet. The lake beside Lucrecia's cave quite looks like an impact site in my opinion.
In the videotapes produced by Gast and Ifalna, we are told that there was first a violent impact to the Knowlespole which seriously injured the planet, then after a certain time that a person has arrived and worked to infect and disorient the population. Which would indicate a two-step attack. Maybe "Jenova" did not arrive on the back of the first meteor, but rather on a second...

In any case I think there would be no special interest in confining an evil entity specifically to the place where it landed (crashed). Even more especially in the heart of the planet's injury (but maybe they did not have a choice ...)
I’d noticed these other craters before and wondered if the Black Materia had ever been used before. In my dinosaur article in issue 2 of the Timber Maniacs magazine (page 25) I entertained the idea that an earlier impact could have wiped out the non-avian dinosaurs in that world (aside from the Vlakorados, which still survives in the Knowlespole region, and the Heavy Tank / mutant ceratopsid which haunts the Gongaga Reactor ruins).

We can’t be sure when these other impacts occurred (that’s if, indeed, these landmarks were craters formed by meteors, or even craters at all). I would personally believe that it is unlikely that Jenova landed on the Planet forming a crater other than the North Crater. If she had landed where Lucrecia’s Cave is located now, that would mean that she would have travelled immediately to the Knowlespole (where Ifalna stated she began attacking the Cetra) instead of attacking the Planet closest to her impact site. Additionally, the Planet would then need to divert energy to heal the second wound, meaning that the crater near Lucrecia’s Cave would also become barren and icy, like the Knowlespole.

I would suspect that if the circular lake outside Lucrecia’s Cave really does indicate a crater, it is more likely to have been a wound on the Planet dating to long before the North Crater was formed, and long before Jenova appeared. The area surrounding it has already healed (or has almost fully healed, if we treat the Corel and Cosmo region deserts are residual leftovers of this devastation rather than just being deserts forming due to regular conditions).


Having said all of that, it is still ambiguous in the text of the game. Ifalna’s words (oral history, mind you) don’t give us the full details. The Cetra noticed the impact at the North Crater and thousands gathered at the Knowlespole to help the Planet heal the region. An unspecified time later, Jenova arrived. That could mean a second landing, or it could just mean that Jenova was in suspended animation within the meteor and took a while to emerge. Or maybe she was biding her time. It isn’t clear. We could be talking days, weeks, months, years after the North Crater impact.

I'd suspect some time had passed as it needs to be long enough for the Cetra group together, and also long enough for the Planet to warn them all to get out (as Ifalna states) before Jenova starts picking them off.


Yet if there is one person who seems to have been confined in the game, it is Lucrecia in a crystal (lucrecia's cave).
Sometimes this cave seems to be a place that Grimoire Valentine introduces to Lucrecia (Dirge of Cerberus flashback), sometimes it's a place where she seems to wander alive (Final Fantasy VII) or left (Final Fantasy VII), sometimes a place where she seems confined inside a crystal (Dirge of Cerberus). Maybe the definition of Jenova's inconsistency... (Just a guess, Lucrecia as "Jenova" are said to be co-mothers of Sephiroth, but maybe Hojo did not need to inject additional cells/genes in the process except his own (or Vincent's, who knows really))
In Dirge of Cerberus the lore was expanded to state that Chaos was destined to emerge in the cave, so that cave has a special meaning to Lucrecia’s line of research.

I think she’s supposed to be encased in the crystal. She’s unable to die because of the Jenova cells (for some reason), hence her complaint to Vincent in the original game. Whatever has happened to Lucrecia (which isn’t really clear) is down to Jenova. I've read somewhere that her crystalisation was voluntary, but there must be more to it than that as humans generally aren't known to decide to turn themselves into crystals. Maybe the Planet mistook her for Jenova due to the particles within her. Maybe it was starting to entomb her as Jenova had been entombed, and Lucrecia willingly let it happen. I'm not certain.

When we enter this cave for the first time accompanied by Vincent, Lucrecia is present and a flashback is launched quickly. This flashback seems to be from Vincent's memory and intended to enlighten the player on a particular event. In my opinion it is not a dream or any manipulation intended to disorient one of the characters of the game, "Jenova" is not at work in this memory. I see it pretty pure.
I don’t think Jenova is working through that flashback either. I think it is the emotional response of Vincent seeing Lucrecia there for the first time and remembering their history together (also serving to introduce the player to Vincent’s relevance to the core FFVII plot for the first time).

It seems that this scene shows a moment quite close to the procreation of Sephiroth, showing the scientists approaching the entrance of the mansion, followed by the scene of rupture between Lucrecia and Vincent. It seems to me to be able to notice three scientists, Gast leading the way (brown trousers), Hojo (black trousers) and then Ifalna (long hair).

At one point, Vincent said this sentence "I was unable to stop professor Gast and Hojo. And Lucrecia ... I was unable to stop them", which would seriously imply Gast's responsibility in the final phase. He does not look particularly disturbed or ready to flee but rather to lead the party serenely.
At least this should be able to confirm the relationship between Gast and Lucrecia.
This checks out. Gast would have been the lead scientist at this time. His authority would have been senior to Hojo (who would have been working under his shadow awaiting his chance to shine). Gast had yet to discover what Jenova actually is and would have been working confidently on that project believing her to be a genuine Cetra.

Sephiroth has a great deal of respect for Gast, and it is his research which he reads and grows fanatical over when he finds it in the basement of Shinra Manor. Sephiroth’s view of Jenova is warped and inaccurate at first and he believes, as Gast did, that Jenova is a Cetra. And (unlike Gast) Sephiroth believed that made Jenova (and thus himself as Jenova’s son) superior to regular humans.

When I said I didn’t think Gast and Lucrecia were related, I meant by blood and genetics. They were definitely colleagues and both scientists working for Shinra at the same time. They would have known each other very well.


Something else. Maybe just a visual effect used on different characters for no plot related reason. Aerith and Sephiroth appear to have whitening syndrome. First Aerith (fade to white) as she announces her departure during Cloud's dream (Sleeping Forest), then Sephiroth (fade from white) as he makes his big return at the time of the final battle. I find it strange that this effect is used "straight"for the departure of an important character and "inverted" for the return of another one, it makes me think that there could be a collusion between Aerith and Sephiroth, other than capillary. ;)
This is a really interesting observation.
While I don’t think that there is a collusion between Aerith and Sephiroth intended in the plot, it could be symbolic for the departure and rebirth of these characters. I had never noticed that they become white like ghosts before.

I totally understand that this scene is meant to be read like this.

But I find it rather complicated for Ifalna (last representative of Cetra and therefore very attached to the planet) to trust a scientist belonging to the most harmful organization in regard to the planet's health. In addition a scientist who plans to continue his researches on her in a way similar to the process which led to the birth of Sephiroth (procreation of Aerith). Ok, he apparently helped her escape from the clutches of Shinra ...

Following the murder of Gast by Hojo's orders, Ifalna and Aerith captives are supposed to return to the research facility (Midgar or Nibelheim I don't know) to undergo new experiments. But that never seems to have happened, at least I did not find any traces. Worse, later Ifalna returns to Midgar in order to save her daughter apparently! Quite strange and risky idea it seems to me, a bit like jumping into the mouth of the wolf .
The new experiments on Ifalna and Aerith did happen, or were supposed to have happened. However, the details surrounding what happened aren’t fully explored. We can presume that Hojo experimented on them in some way, or did tests with them.

Ifalna doesn’t return to Midgar willingly and alone. What happens is that she is wounded as she attempts to escape Midgar with Aerith. She dies at the train station at the slums as she attempts to flee and her last act before dying was to hand Aerith over to her soon-to-be adoptive mother, Elmyra. This worked for a while and Aerith lived undetected in the Slums for a few years… Until the Turks discovered her. Thankfully, Tseng was sympathetic and cared for Aerith and made sure that a bargain could be struck so that she could be monitored by Shinra, but still live a life of sorts with her adoptive mother.

I really like your analysis. This seems to be the important message of the myth.
I note here a remark that I have not yet developed. The Greek legend of Orpheus and Eurydice has much in common with the legend of Japan's creation (the story of Izanagi and Izanami) and probably predates it. It is possible that the same message is implied in this second myth too, altough the global story seems much complicated as it involves the creation of Japan and that the betrayal act commited by Izanagi (attempt to see Izanami in darkness by lighting a fire ) leads to a fight between the two party.
There are also loose parallels in the Mesopotamian myths of the fertility and war goddess Inanna/Ishtar. The details differ depending on the version, but generally in this myth the goddess visits the Underworld willingly, turns into a corpse because she is in the forbidden zone, then other deities try to bargain for her release... However a soul must pay for a soul, so Inanna/Ishtar offers up her spouse Dumuzid's soul since he wasn't mourning her enough.

So quite a different ending, but there are similarities... Additionally her spouse then became a Persephone-like figure and spent half of the year in the Underworld, and half of the year on Earth. Another dying/rising god to explain the seasons.

You can often find particular strands of narratives have moved from culture to culture. As people move and interact, so do their ideas.
 
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Molosev

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I think she’s supposed to be encased in the crystal. She’s unable to die because of the Jenova cells (for some reason), hence her complaint to Vincent in the original game. Whatever has happened to Lucrecia (which isn’t really clear) is down to Jenova. I've read somewhere that her crystalisation was voluntary, but there must be more to it than that as humans generally aren't known to decide to turn themselves into crystals. Maybe the Planet mistook her for Jenova due to the particles within her. Maybe it was starting to entomb her as Jenova had been entombed, and Lucrecia willingly let it happen. I'm not certain.
Maybe Jenova (if we consider that she is the spirit of the Lifestream) didn't wan't Lucrecia to join the ship (migration vessel) because she put the hypothetic next migration in great danger by setting "Chaos" unable to fulfil its task. She may have been quarantined.

There are also loose parallels in the Mesopotamian myths of the fertility and war goddess Inanna/Ishtar. The details differ depending on the version, but generally in this myth the goddess visits the Underworld willingly, turns into a corpse because she is in the forbidden zone, then other deities try to bargain for her release... However a soul must pay for a soul, so Inanna/Ishtar offers up her spouse Dumuzid's soul since he wasn't mourning her enough.
Great reference once again !
I can loosly see a parallel beween the names Ifalna and Inanna. This observation could help tie the link between Aerith, Iflana and Lucrecia, they would all point to the same kind of story (Orpheus myth like). Aerith > Eurydice (movie Parking), Ifalna > Inanna, Lucrecia has a love story with Vincent (who makes me think a lot about Orpheus as I pointed somewhere on this forum). This could make one think that Jenova is God, fallen on this planet (hell) and wanting to leave.
 
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Dionysos

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Maybe Jenova (if we consider that she is the spirit of the Lifestream) didn't wan't Lucrecia to join the ship (migration vessel) because she put the hypothetic next migration in great danger by setting "Chaos" unable to fulfil its task. She may have been quarantined.
I think whether we roll with the idea of Jenova being the spirit of the Lifestream or not, it is quite possible that Lucrecia has been effectively quarantined by the Planet. If we follow your theory about Jenova then it could be due to her work with Chaos and how that could have affected schedule of the migration.

If we we follow the traditional, purist interpretation of the game then it'll be something to do with her giving birth to Sephiroth, therefore the biological mother of the greatest threat to the Planet. Or just the general presence of Jenova cell residue within her.


Great reference once again !
I can loosly see a parallel beween the names Ifalna and Inanaa. This observation could help tie the link between Aerith, Iflana and Lucrecia, they would all point to the same kind of story (Orpheus myth like). Aerith > Eurydice (movie Parking), Ifalna > Inanna, Lucrecia has a love story with Vincent (who makes me think a lot about Orpheus as I pointed somewhere on this forum). This could make one think that Jenova is God, fallen on this planet (hell) and wanting to leave.
It could well be that Jenova was a lost 'god' (or godlike being when compared with humans). It could be that she was a lost alien seeking food and resources before attempting to blast off on a perilous journey back to her homeworld.

She might also be like a fallen angel, falling into Hell. Maybe she had once been a majestic, graceful glider of the cosmos but one day became covetous and jealous and was cast down. Maybe she was punished and exiled on the FFVII Planet. From her perspective, a sort of Hell. The fallen angel symbolism would be used in her one-winged 'children'. Sephiroth, at least, wanted to gather energy into himself and become a god and blast off into the cosmos, hence, in a sense, escaping the Hell his mother had fallen into. The blasting off into the cosmos element of Sephiroth's wishes are more prominent in Compilation material (particularly Advent Children). I'll have to look into the original game again to determine whether that factored into that at all, or whether attaining godhood was his endgame back then.

These ideas would make Jenova's actions seem less like an invasion and more like the actions of a panicked, trapped animal hoping to return to her home.

The ambiguities surrounding Jenova (in that we never really get to meet her without Sephiroth's involvement/influence) make it difficult to determine the entity's intent.
 
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