Tuesday, 10 January 2006
This is a great film and I recommend it. I've never gone to see a film a second time in the cinema, but I went back to see this one. I don't want to sound silly but it has had a profound effect on me. I have never grieved after seeing a film in my life, but I did after this one. I was describing it to a friend the day after seeing it and I was beginning to choke up. I had to change the subject. I think of myself as fairly level-headed so this kind of behaviour shocked me.
I remember reading Proulx's short-story back when it was published. It appeared first in the New Yorker and then was published separately as a single volume and I remember a lot of talk about the status of the short-story (or maybe this short-story) that it could be published in booklet form with all the publicity machine behind it that you'd expect from a novel. But Fourth Estate were right. And it sold very well as I remember. I also recommend the beautiful Willie Nelson version of Bob Dylan's song 'He was a Friend of Mine', which is played over the closing credits and is on the soundtrack. Ang Lee has done a fine fine job with the material and has allowed the medium of film to really express the full power of the story. It isn't trying to do anything but be art. And it is indeed art.