WEIRDLAND: Heartbreaking endings

Thursday, June 26, 2008

Heartbreaking endings

"Although rodeos, horses, and cattle percolate through the film, Brokeback does not fit the classic American Western movie storyline. From the films of William S. Hart and Tom Mix down through Gary Cooper in The Virginian and High Noon, John Wayne in Stagecoach, Alan Ladd in Shane, and Clint Eastwood in The Unforgiven, the Western hero wears a cowboy hat, rides a horse, and carries a gun. His ultimate goal is to save the good folks from the bad guys, and he always succeeds. Brokeback, of course, is not like these films at all. Jack Twist and Ennis Del Mar are not engaged in the Westerner’s project of vanquishing evil. In fact, Ang Lee’s film more closely resembles the stories of such star-crossed lovers as Abelard and Heloise, Tristan and Isolde, and Romeo and Juliet. More interestingly, it fits a narrative pattern common in the nineteenth-century operas of Bellini, Donizetti, Verdi, and Wagner.

Ennis learns through a returned postcard that Jack is dead.
Jack’s wife tells him what we’re meant to regard as a false explanation of Jack’s death; for we’re shown a scene lasting only a few seconds of screen time in which a man is brutally attacked by men wielding tire irons. Later Jack’s father denies Ennis’s request to bury Jack’s ashes on Brokeback mountain. All Ennis has left is the jacket and shirt Jack’s mother kindly has given him. And he lives out his live in his small trailer, alone, as if entombed. Thus Brokeback closes, not with a triumphant love duet, but with an enormously sad aloneness. Still, if the film does not end with the standard triumph of love, it ends with love sustained, as Ennis, caressing Jack’s shirt and jacket, tears up and speaks his name aloud: “Jack, I swear …” This is all the Liebestod these star-crossed lovers are allowed".
Source:"The conversations that Seth and Evan have are so genuine and so quirky, you can't help but respond to what their characters are doing. Everyone has a weird friend like McLovin, though probably not the level of weirdness to which the character goes. Everybody has done something stupid to impress a girl. It's what high school is all about, and "Superbad" is about two guys who have spent their entire high school years doing nothing but 'hanging out', who are finally afford the opportunity to do something that might make them popular, even for a couple of hours. There is an underlying sweetness to the film, especially involving Evan's moving to college and leaving Seth behind. You get the feeling that things are probably going to seriously change after the credits roll in this film. It was just so refreshing to see a film that went non-stop for the laughs, but still managed to provide convincing and likable characters in a storyline that had a little touch of sweetness to it. That's what Judd Apatow does so well with his films, and it evidently rubs off on the films he produces too.

The performances here are rock solid. Jonah Hill and Michael Cera are dead-on as Seth and Evan. I was especially impressed with Cera's performance, who has really developed his own quirky acting style that accounts for a large percentage of the laughs in the film". Source:


Xenia said...

One of the saddest things in BBM is Jack's death of course, but even more Ennis's loneliness because of it. And Ennis's tenderness towards those shirts, the only Jack's property he's allowed to have access to, is truly heartbreaking...

I haven't seen Superbad yet. But I will, seems a good one...:)

Kendra said...

If you have and a tolerance towards humour sprinkled with funny grossness you'll enjoy "Superbad", it's a mix of sex-comedy and coming of age high-school story, but it's above the typical "American pie" saga, and the last part of "Superbad" has a dramatic tone that gives it credibility to the whole film. Plus, that nice touch of placing "Fellini" in a stand of the centre mall was like a little wink to the nostalgic teenage years.

Kendra said...

BBM is the most depressing film starred by Jake for me, the final just breaks my heart in pieces.
Although I found myself crying in the ending of Superbad the second viewing too, as I said you'll like it if you have a healthy humour and an open mind (I don't share some opinions of "too sexist" to "Superbad").