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Life with Lavendar in London town

Friday, 29 January 2010

The Road

I went to see The Road last night; the film adaptation of Cormac McCarthy's Pulitzer winning novel.

I had read many reviews of the film prior, all of them commenting on the grim, relentless bleakness inherent. It's to be expected though, when the film's subject is surviving a post-apocalyptic world where hope hangs on a thread.

Before I left work for the cinema, I mentioned to a colleague that I was going to see it. She looked at me in alarm.

Oh no.

What do you mean, Oh No?

You'll need a drink when you get out, she replied. Actually maybe best to have one before you go in too.

All this wonderful preamble fully situated me to come out of the film and slit my wrists.

I went nonetheless.

Afterwards I did not kill myself but instead went for pizza with my friend who had come with me. We went in a slightly stunned state, as if we had been bludgeoned by a mallet, but in a good way.

The film was bleak and grim and relentless. It was also familiar, tender and visionary. At least for me.

I sat rivetted throughout. I didn't find it plodding or angstful. The images and emotions onscreen seemed universal. Questions raised in the film were my own and that of my generation and the ones to follow. Questions about survival, morality, humanity, hope and love.

It was compelling and I can't get it out of my head.


Anonymous said...

Haven't seen the film, but I'm reading the book. Most of the reviews I read were likewise unfavourable, but mainly suggesting that the film just couldn't convey the vastness of scale that was present throughout the book. I'll be interested in seeing the film. The pizza sounds good, too.

The book is obviously about the survival of humanity in a post apocalyptic world, but it seemed to me to run a parallel with "If this is a Man" by Primo Levi, and "The Plague" by Albert Camus. In the face of such catastrophic conditions, does humanity as we know it become a luxury? Is it just something that we shed in order to survive? Or is it essential? The conclusion seems to the latter in all three cases, although our humanity does seem to be a rather elusive indefinable thing.

Lavendar Lee said...

Perhaps the question should be whether humanity as we define it is a social adapatation rather than an innate quality in human beings?