-Which, of course, arises from Marshall kindly sending it to me, after my (inadvertently) winning a commenting contest. So...thank you, Marshall.
-Anyway, as some of ya'll may know, I've previously written two other things about A Serious Man, what I think is the most provocative (I'm so allowed to describe shit like that now) film of the Coen Brothers'. It is almost on Donnie Darko-levels of speculation for me, see.
-I had a nice theory worked out about this, so, uh, spoilers: Our dogged hero, Larry Gopnik (Michael Stuhlberg), is being punished, not for any active wrongdoings he's done, but for, as he repeats throughout in an hysterical defense of himself, "I haven't done anything!" Precisely, you poor fool! You--he--is a nice, likable dude, but at the end of the day, he's just not important. He hasn't published anything, made a spectacle of himself in the community, borne some rather unextraordinary kids. Therefore, his wife, a bit of bitch, if we must be honest, leaves him for the (ahem) ugly-as-shit, older, rather dull and pretentious Sy Abelman, precisely because he is more important, the eponymous 'serious man'. When he begins to take action against these perceived wrongdoings--as he advises his brother (Richard Kind), he helps himself--things start going well, better, in fact, than before. His wife comes back to him (after, of course, Sy dies in a car accident), he's probably up for tenure at his profess er job, his brother...well, I don't really know, he just kinda disappeared after the bar mitzvah of the similarly challenged life of son Danny (?) (though he is a bit more actively responsible for his own shit)...but, anyway, both he, Larry, and his son, their prospects look up. Danny gets his radio, previously confiscated from his Hebrew school teacher, returned by the sage-like rabbi who congratulates him, and therefore, the twenty bucks he owes his pot supplier.
But, see, they fuck it up, and things get worse. Rather than going back to passive existence, they go the opposite direction than before--Danny blatantly ignores the Rabbi's words ('Be a good boy', the answer, probably, to all of Larry's desperate existential questions, as he could not get in to see the Rabbi, not his recital of Jefferson Airplane lyrics), and puts his headphones back in. Larry, 'accepting the mystery' of accepting a bribe from a South Korean student of his, changing his grade to a passing C-. As both of them do so, their fates are pretty much sealed. Larry's doom-implied phone call from his doctor (in relation to an X-ray taken in the beginning). Danny leans in to pay his dealer, the tornado warning comes, and both are guarenteed an early demise.
Come to think of it, the whole movie can essentially be broken down to father and son. Larry's other daughter, a bespectled maybe-dropout (never really said) who spends all day washing her hair, stealing from his wallet, and saving for a nose job, his wife, above, all the economic problems he faces, criminal, personal, spiritual, they are all, as the young and short-sighted Junior Rabbi Larry first talks to (Simon Heldberg) says, they are all 'problems'. But Larry and Danny, they are the only ones these problems are projected at.
-Right. So. Now I don't know. I'm tired, I'm confused, I'm not in the mood for big-picture shit. I just wanna see Toy Story 3.
plato's cave eleven (being a film journal) - carl franklin - *one false move* - 1992 was just watching this for the first time last week and about to watch *a simple plan* for a second time, then fou...
2 hours ago