It's Thursday, so that means it's time for Thursday Movie Picks! I love the theme this week, as it's a theme that hits very close to home for me and is one that often stirs in me something very primal. I find a deep connection to films on the subject, and narrowing down my three films was hard, but I decided to go with three different types of films to cover the subject.
And the theme of the week is:
Like I said, this hits close to home for me. I instinctively wanted to list Finding Nemo again, but I'm determined not to list the same film twice, so I went a different route. So, I selected three different types of films to base themselves on father-son relationships; one genre Blockbuster, one foreign drama and one experimental mind-fuck.
It may seem weird, but this was honestly the first film that I thought of when I read the theme for the week. I remember seeing this in the theater and being so moved by it. Granted, I was 15 and my idea of what makes a great film was...different, but the fact remains that as a portrait of a father-son relationship and the bond, love and need for a father in a son's life, this kind of hits all the right spots. Dennis Quaid and Jesus Christ turn in really honest performances, and that 'tug every heartstring humanly possible' finale gets me every time.
If you haven't seen this movie, RUN TO IT! The Return is, without question, one of my favorite films of the aughts. It's a tragic look at the effect that a father's attentiveness can have on a child, and the terrible reality that by the time we realize what we have, it is often far too late. I'm going to stop typing before I start crying.
|The Tree of Life|
After all is said and done, all the dinosaurs have been killed and Jessica Chastain has talked aimlessly to the wind, The Tree of Life is about the effect that fathers have on their sons. That's what it boils down to, and that's what we're left pondering the most. Sure, to some this may feel like it's about pretty much nothing at all, but the swirling depictions of life starting and pushing forward play elegantly into Malick's idea that sons become fathers as life repeats itself. It's not his strongest work, but it is probably his most thought-provoking.