Last night Fred and I went to see Brokeback Mountain, which finally made it to Amsterdam. I have listened to a number of reviews on the ole ipod and I've talked to several people about the movie. Most of the reviews are rave. I've heard a few along the lines of "I cried all the way through." I've heard that Anne Hathaway was not that great, or that she was really good. Mixed reviews. She certainly spent a lot of time in the hair department of the movie set.
When I spoke to Patty, someone who defies description - the much more than a friend person in my life, she said that she was still thinking about it the next day and for weeks afterwards. She said she needed to watch something vapid to get her mind off of the movie because she couldn't quit rolling it around in her mind. I feel the same.
We had dim sum last night after the movie. We ordered six items and picked at them. We didn't really have a lot to say because we were both thinking about the movie. There was some pleasant chit-chat, but it was very difficult for me to express what I was thinking during, and about, the movie. Similarly, I imagine it was difficult for Fred to imagine what it would have been like to live in that time in America. Who knows what he was thinking?
Now, I'm about to discuss the ending. So if you don't want to read that, stop now.
I found the ending painful. There is Ennis standing in a mobile home with the old shirt of the love of his life and a postcard. His life sucks and the only person he cared about being with is gone suddenly and forever. I can see why this movie and these actors have been nominated for so many awards. It's a great story. It's well done. It's a little gut wrenching.
Jack's death took me by surprise. Then, when it came out that he was beaten to death, it pained me a little more. It just seemed so unnecessary. These two guys had such sucky lives because of the times and the environment and the attitude of Ennis. I keep trying to figure out how things could have gone differently for them. I can't.
One could say that if Ennis had some guts, they could have had a nice life together. But it was established pretty clearly why Ennis was afraid of telling anyone, or living openly. If they had moved to a city, they could have lived together. But these are clearly two characters meant for the open range.
What I was left with at the end was more of an anger, an anger at Ennis for accepting that this was his lot. But I also felt a little empty. There's nothing he can do. Jack is gone and there is no one that Ennis can talk to. So he'll go on living - from the age of45 or so - with his secret, drinking to excess.
What really pisses me off is that my parents think that the whole closeted thing, the whole getting married and denying that part of yourself, is a solution. It pisses me off that they won't see the movie, that they won't think for a second about the hell my life could have been if I had done what they wanted.
I'll probalby see it again. I've just read this again and I'm not feeling particularly articulate right now. It would be good to give it a little time and then re-see it. Wonder if I could convince Fred to see it again.
Two thumbs up. I just wish it wasn't so damn sad.
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