No Country for Old Men

"Like death itself, Anton operates without discrimination, without the guidance of reason and with the force of inevitability. The equation is hauntingly simple. In order to illustrate the point with clarity, Anton offers one of his potential victims mercy with the flip of a coin; In Anton’s universe, one which we inevitably share, life boils down to chance, to making life and death choices regardless of whether we’re ready to stare death in the face or not." - Read Tom Hall's review.

If there is a personification of Death in recent cinema, then it must be Javier Bardem's Anton Chigurh in No Country for Old men. It is a strange movie (as it doesn't fit with what we're used to especially the ending) but it is intimate in its treatment of life, death, fate and human nature.

There are many things in this world and they mostly involve one kind of addiction or another. It is the way of our modern society. We use our addictions to deny our own insecurities (it can be anything from loneliness to boredom to unfulfilled desires), and everything "negative" becomes a catastrophe. We don't want to face them so we keep running away, always needing to keep pace with everything else, to earn more money, to get the latest gadgets, just to cover up our own little stories - that we need that something else - just to be happy. Truth is, our life will never be how we would like it to be. If we're not happy now, we can never be happy later.

There are two great disappointments in life.
Not getting what you want and getting it.

~Sir George Bernard Shaw

Llewelyn Moss and the Pandora's Box

Anton and the satchel of money are inextricably linked. It is a Pandora's box, the apple in the Garden of Eden, it is blood money from a drug deal gone bad. If you find a bag that contains two million dollars in unmarked bills, what would you do? It promises to make your dreams come true (much like the lottery but with less dramatic side effects), but Death never makes any promises. He comes as and when he wishes, and no matter how far Llewelyn Moss ran with the money, or how much he believe he could make it, his life was stretching thinner and thinner. Haha Death and his satchel of money. Throw the bait and they will bite...

There are many things in this world; there is beauty and happiness and there is the present. The only time to be happy is in the present. That is the age of happiness, the time when children are children, fully in the present (Haha sometimes you wonder if children are growing up a little too fast these days). And of course, we are all addicted to speed nowadays. Things just get faster and faster and we never really have any time to stay still. If we stop for a moment, we can feel the constant pull of our thoughts and reactions that takes us towards what we fear and what we crave. Both are just different faces on the same coin. Both are dissatisfactions with little or no bearing on the present...


1 comment:

patrick said...

just saw no country for old men, it's unassumingly unconventional yet (thankfully) never over-the-top. the Coen bros. deserve their Oscars; well done indeed.