Waiting to Die
Originally uploaded by lorenzodom
Warning: In this piece I review three movies from 1990, 2000 and 2002, and immediately reveal how they unfold. In other words, if you care to be surprised, don’t read on.
November 27, 2007, New York City, NY:
Waiting to Die
(Get Out of Line, Damnit!)
Over the last three days I happened to watch three movies about three guys who were waiting to die.
Or, at least, that’s how I am melodramatically interpreting what I saw, if only to spotlight the fatalism of this old man and to make this piece mildly more interesting.
It is no coincidence that all the protagonists of these films were themselves desperately trying to make life itself interesting.
All of them, ultimately, failed.
Actually, one of them failed, but because it was a typical American movie, suddenly things changed, so that we get a typical Hollywood “happy ending.” The other two, were French films. Hence, everyone dies.
The films I watched included Joe Versus The Volcano, Une Affair de Goût (A Matter of Taste), and L’Homme du Train (The Man on the Train).
Joe Versus The Volcano was essentially about a man whose soul was dying because he was stuck at a dead-end corporate job, and thus, felt he never really got to experience life. That is, until he is suddenly given a chance to go on one last journey before he must take a leap into his ultimate destiny (i.e. sacrifice his life for the good of the tribe (i.e. he is a lifelong and faithful Company employee) by jumping into an active volcano).
Une Affair de Gout was a pseudo gay psycho thriller about an eccentric tycoon who hires another man to be his “food taster.”
In reality, the crazy magnate is blasé with his life and thus plays a game where he gets his taster to mimic him in every way possible—to have the same tastes, preferences, and proclivities for everything the sun.
In the end, the taster is driven mad and ultimately murders his boss-cum pseudo soul-mate.
And The Man on the Train happened to also be another pseudo gay psycho thriller (alas, French films are never really thrilling) about two men coming from opposite ends of the track of life, who coincidentally meet and little-by-little find that after long lives of violent crime and quiet and uneventful erudition, they yearn to live like the other man.
In the end, they both die and exchange lives, but only in the afterlife.
So, what does it all mean? (I ask myself, as I write while riding the commuter bus to my corporate job of 8 years, as of three days from now…)
(long drawn out sigh)
Well, I’ll tell you what it means—it means that if you don’t make an extra effort to make this journey (i.e. life) extraordinary, if you don’t ever muster the courage to fulfill your dreams, follow your bliss, be what you really want to be, then, than, ultimately, just like most others, you’re just waiting to die (esp. after you turn 40).
So, get out of line damnit!
Don’t wait until those desperate hours to make a last-minute effort to redeem your life and make it worthy of life’s struggle.
Here’s a few words to inspire you: 25 Lessons