Wednesday, February 13, 2008

Dying with eyes closed and an open heart

If you haven't watched the Bucket List, the movie gods demand that you do so immediately.

Like the many pieces of modern art that has been discussed in this contemptuous journal, this author would be damned if the philosophy encased within the thick lines of cinematography and dialog were not explored.

The premise seemed simple enough, two men about to die making a list of things (mostly reckless activities) before they "Kicked the Bucket". As one can easily surmise, this movie was just ripe with realizations and epiphanies packaged in either tear jerking moments or witty exchanges.

One could go on and just post a review but that's not the point now isn't it? Two quotes from other masterpieces of contemporary art kept popping up into my mind while watching this movie. "A Man's mortality is a compass that points his way in life." The quote, which is taken from Trias the Betrayer from the game Planescape: Torment, further illustrates that when we are faced with the inescapable truth of our own demise, we get direction. Why else are people rushing to gain riches or garner treasures whether they are physical or otherwise? While one can argue that this is not the consistent case with regards to the two main characters of the Bucket List, a closer look would tell you that they do indeed ascribe to this, the only difference being that after being faced with a clear time limit to their mortality, Morgan Freeman and Jack Nicholson's characters let go of the fear of losing their way, and in the case of Freeman, there is a scene that illustrates this clearer.

The second quote was actually an answer when a friend once asked what makes me happy: "Life... is strength. That is not to be contested; it seems logical enough. You live; you affect your world." The main antagonist for the second installation of the Baldur's Gate series is perhaps, contradictory to the nature of the plot. Then again, supporting characters and the main protagonists themselves illustrate just how living and the influence that comes with it is such a powerful force.

It was probably intentional that certain life inquiries like those of love, faith, logic and perception were thinly veiled in character dialog. Were we really watching a simple story, or a reflection of our thoughts with regards to living and dying? Such queries may not hit home immediately to some people, but for someone who has lost a loved one, these reflections become quite evident.

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