Saturday, January 29, 2005

more thoughts on garden state...

after several recent discussions about garden state, i'm disappointed that everyone isn't loving it as much as i do! i understand that "the world don't move to the beat of just one drum, what might be right for you, may not be right for some" (name that tv theme song), but i really want everyone to love it, or at least appreciate it. so in attempt to change the minds of everyone who's told me they didn't like it, here goes nothin'.

i totally understand that different people will relate to it because of where they are in their own life...but still. it's a movie that i think connects with our generation...people in their 20s. those who have just graduated college, who've been away from home for a while, out on their own trying to discover what life is really about. it's about a character who's going through the motions of life, but not really living it. not loving it. not feeling it. he's numb to all feeling and all emotion. then he meets sam, who is the total opposite, he realizes what life could be like. she loves life, loves living, she welcomes the world with open arms, she feels.

through their relationship he is able to feel for the first time. things that he's been unable to deal with before. going home to what he expected to be the same, only to realize that he's outgrown his home...or the memory of what home was. actually, the whole discussion about home and what it was and what it meant was captured in the pool scene where large says:

"you'll see when you move out it just sort of happens one day and it's just gone. and you can never get it back. it's like you get homesick for a place that doesn't exist. i mean it's like this right of passage, you know. you won't have this feeling again until you create a new idea of home for yourself, you know, for you kids, for the family you start, it's like a cycle or something. i miss the idea of it. maybe that's all family really is. a group of people who miss the same imaginary place."

i think it hits hard to anyone who's ever "gone home again" only to discover that it's not the's not what you want it to be.

some points of relevance:

1. the idea of home. what idea of home have we created for ourselves? does it look like home used to look, or as we've created it in our minds to be? is "home" really a physical place, or merely an emotion. what part of "home" does my family play? what makes me feel safe?

andrew: "when i'm with you i feel so i'm home."

2. feeling numb. numb to life, emotion, feeling, disconnectedness to the world around us. large being able to feel things for the first time. taking sam's mom up on the offer for a hug, learning how to cry in the bathtub scene, learning to let go and break away.

andrew: "f, this hurts so much."
sam: "i know it hurts. but it's life, and it's real. and sometimes it f'ing hurts, but it's life, and it's pretty much all we've got."

3. having a passion for life. even in the little things, loving every minute. creating ways to make yourself an original. being "in the moment." living life to the fullest, what we were created to do.

sam: "this is your one opportunity to do something that no one has ever done before and that no one will copy throughout human existence. and if nothing else, you will be remembered as the one guy who ever did this...this one thing."

4. the people life throws your direction. life's characters often have an interconnectedness that is unexplainable. i think that the movie captured the "realness" of people. i was thinking about all the characters and how real they seemed.

sam: she embraces life. she's someone you'd want to meet and be friends with. she's captured youth in that fun-i-never-want-to-grow-up kind of way. she's original. she's stinkin' hillarious. she's in love with everything around her. she's fun. she's so real.

large: he's trying to figure out life. he's confused. he's numb to the world, to emotions, to feeling anything. caught up in the mundane life. he's never had the opportunity to actually live live. he's been living the life someone else prescribed to him, void of fun, emotion, and feeling.

mark: he's a random friend from large's past. you can tell large has somewhat outgrown the relationship, but he continues to hang out with him because there's that already established bond from being old friends. he represents what large could be like if he'd never left home. most people who have left home have often had those friends who represent "what could have been."

large's dad: represents the well meaning parent who doesn't understand the harm their doing to their child. they had good intentions, but they didn't make the best decisions regarding the choices laid out in front of them.

other questions it makes me ask...

***have you ever felt out of place?
***have you ever felt like you were going through the motions of life and not taking the time to explore it on your own?
***have you ever wanted something more?
***have you ever come across a person who you've been intrigued by, someone who lives every second of life to the absolute fullest, someone who makes you think “i wish i had that.”
***is your life different than what you had imagined it to be?

if you identify with these questions, then i don't understand how you don't identify with large? and at this point if you still haven’t, maybe you never will...

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