I watched (and watched is the operative word in this case) a movie, All is Lost, the other night. Robert Redford played the only character and had the only speaking part, requiring him to memorize very, very few, lines. While I was impressed with Redford’s portrayal of a man coping with an exceptional challenge, I don’t know that I can say what the film was about. Was it a survival film? Was it a film intended to explore the results of bad decisions? Was it a slow-speed action film? I don’t know. That notwithstanding, the film held my attention for almost two hours, a rarity in my film-watching experience. I enjoyed the film. I empathized with the character and sympathized with his plight. I worried for him. When he made decisions, I worried whether they were the right ones. When he confronted obstacles, I wondered whether they were believable, but I believed them nonetheless.
Though I enjoyed the film, I can’t say with certainty that it achieved its objective with me, as much because I don’t know what that aim was as because it didn’t entirely “register” with me. But I wondered whether I would have responded to the experience as he did. I wondered whether I have the ingenuity that the character in the film had. But, mostly, I wonder whether the lines at the beginning of the film were connected to the end.
I don’t know. I just don’t know. Redford and the writer/director, J.C. Chandor, deserve applause for producing a film that, if nothing else, causes intellectual and emotional confusion (at least in me).
There will be more film on my agenda for 2015; it’s time I got out a bit more. In the figurative sense; I prefer staying in with Netflix.