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Sunday, November 23, 2014

Extremely Close And...

I watched Extremely Loud And Incredibly Close again.

Of course, I liked it again. I give it just over 92% in my Rotten Tomatoes rating system, and sucks to the critics and the audiences who poo-pooed it.
I paid close attention this time......

(By now, if you have read this blog long enough, you must sense that I have a bit of a problem paying attention to things which are not my real focus at the moment. I mean, in the film we are talking about, I could have been paying too much attention to the fact that Viola Davis cracks open the door and does not want Thomas Horn's character to enter and looked exactly the same as she did in Solaris when she did not want George Clooney's character to enter her cabin.
I coulda been doin' that.)

... and I understood the grandfather storyline.

Now I suppose that the critics say that the reunion of the grandfather (Max von Sydow, who incharacter was to have witnessed the death of his parents in Dresden... probably the Fire Storms) with the family after the death of his son (Tom Hanks) in the World Trade Center, and particularly his new relationship with his grandson (Thomas Horn) is rather unbelievable and saccharine.

However, when I followed it along - resisting diversions, which were plenty, I can assure you, such as taking tambourines along and shaking them to keep one's cool! - I realized that the story was no sugary nonsense, but it immediately reminded me of the play Copenhagen, in which the characters of Werner Heisenberg, the German atomic scientist, and Niels Bohr, the Danish genius behind Quantum Theory, had so achingly much to say to each other.
They had so much that they met in the midst of World War II, but discovered that they could not really open up and talk like Buber's "Ich und Du" - I and Thou. They discovered they had to wait until after death until they could speak in Copenhagen.
(To my mind, that almost defeats "I and Thou".)

That is no small thing.
So there had to be a Death intervention before the grandfather could come back to his family. Good. There had been enough Death, so why begrudge an ending with Life?

I suppose if everyone had died in Extremely Loud And Incredibly Close that the critics would have been somewhat more positive.

Life should be all sugar, honey.


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