you obviously have

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Right now I'm...

Listening to :
Nick Cave : Murder Ballads

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Defying Hitler

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CEO

Weirdest Dream lately :
I dreamed I was on the "other side" when my Dad was passing. I spoke to him and made sure he was okay. Then I woke, and knew he was gone. 30 minutes later, we got the call from the hospital saying that his blood pressure had crashed in the last 30 minutes.

Currently working on :
A BTVS related story called "Long Goodbye" which deals with a member of the Watchers Council being vamped as part of an experiment.
Also completing my nanowrimo effort.

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A blog for that outspoken and aggressive member of the Buffy Bulletin Board.
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   Sunday, February 06, 2005

Garden State

Finally saw it.

First thing, major props to Zach as this is a very accomplished movie for a first time writer/director. And starring in it as well. That's more than was done in Lost in Translation, of which this movie reminded me.

I think it takes some balls to be able to say to a studio that you want to write and direct and star in a feature, when you're basically a little known tv actor. Oh, and Natalie Portman is to be your girlfriend. :) I mean, seriously, Natalie plays the sort of adorable young thing that I think every man could easily fall in love with in 4 days.

Despite the age difference thing, I felt the movie spoke to me as well. I could identify, and not always in a pleasant way, with what was going on. Not just in terms of moving away from home or recently going home and attending the funeral of a parent or anything like that. But in the sense that the death of a parent wakes you up to the world in a way that nothing quite like it before does.

And truthfully, I've always been a sort of emotionally numb person. The death of my father didn't devastate me the way I thought it would. I feel very much in the head, and not in the heart. Which has of course, screwed up more than one relationship.

And that was why the ending rang true then false and then suddenly true again.

True, because I remember having that conversation with a girl in my past. Telling her how I was basically too fucked up to give her or anyone what she wanted/needed. Not telling her that I knew she had been telling her friends that she had decided I was the guy she was going to marry. Needing the space to sort my life out, but ultimately just moving to yet another country and staying pretty much as fucked up as I've ever been.

Seeing Large insist that he'll call, and he'll be back, I was like Sam saying "No you won't, dude." I understood where he was coming from. And because it is still a regret of mine, I wanted him to stay, sure. But he gets on the stairs and leaves.

Then suddenly, he's back, and I'm going "What the fuck? Didn't expect that. But okay." It did kind of strike me as a tacked-on semi happy ending.

Until the camera pull back.

And then, I think, it's pretty clear, that this isn't happening. It's his imagination. It's what he will think about when he thinks "What if" over the coming years of his life. The room is too suspiciously empty for me to think otherwise.
Too many weird things about it, such as they are in baggage reclaim (before you get to customs/excise) yet Sam is there. (Surely only incoming travellers can get to there?) And they kind of set up that Large does have a vivid imagination. The start of the movie is in his head. It's just that it's so negative. The end of the movie is capped by another "in his head" piece. This one, sweetly positive. But ultimately just as destructive.

I don't know if it's just me, or if anyone else got something like that from the ending. But that's what I took from it.

And Ingrid where ever you are, I'm just as messed up today as I was then, but damn, I should have stayed.



Comments:
I also recently saw this film, but I didn't come to the same conclusion about the ending. You make some good points, but I think one major difference is that at the end of the film he's off all the medication. It's the first time since he was 9 years old that he's been able to see life clearly, without the haze and numbness from the drugs. So I think the ending was real, not imagined. Also, about the baggage claim: for domestic US flights you do not have to go through customs and anyone can enter the baggage claim area (at least in every US airport I've been in).
 
Hm, okay. Made some business trips to Long Island years ago, but don't remember that about the landing.

What's to stop people just walking into baggage reclaim, picking up a bag, and walking out with it?

Or walking in, adding/removing contraband to someones bags, and then moving on?

And would it still be considered normal to see a completely empty baggage area like that? I've never been in any airport so small that the baggage claim area was empty when the airport was open.
 
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Well, if you flew to Long Island on an international flight, then this wouldn't apply. But yeah, for flights within the US there's nothing to stop anyone from coming in and tampering with/stealing the bags. Heartwarming, isn't it?

As for the empty baggage claim? I really don't remember exactly how it looked in the movie, but I guess it's possible, depending on the timing of arriving flights. Of course, it is just a movie so they could have left it empty for dramatic effect. I'll have to go back and look at the ending again.
 
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