After a long and amazing weekend I came home today and woke up and watched The English Patient. I haven't done anything else, particularly none of the things on the long list of things I desperately need to do, but I don't care.
This movie is amazing. I haven't watched a movie that really made me feel anything for a very long time. And to be honest I never really appreciated and understood the devastation of war until I watched this movie, because although the movie focused on love and pain within the context of war without concentrating on it explicitly, I never really got it until now. Sorry for the sentimentality, I'm still caught up in that massive wave of euphoria that follows a really damn good movie. The emotions in The English Patient; love, pain, guilt, freedom and regret, were just so subtle and yet huge, really really huge.
The things that I really loved about this movie:
It was unpredictable, through the entire movie I kept imagining what would happen next, that it would follow the typical routine of two forbidden lovers running away together and that the tragic ending when they are found out and separated. But it didn’t. I was never shocked at the plot turns, but it was highly original and the fact that I didn’t expect anything was very enlightening.
The characters were flawed, there were no heroes or bad guys; each character was stripped back to exactly what they are, human. There were so many in-depth characters and the audience is able to empathise and connect with even the minor ones while our connection with the major characters is huge.
The timing, the movie cuts between past and present seamlessly, by connecting and juxtaposing moments of emotion; gradually unfolding the epic love story with patience and tenderness, like a parent reading a fairy tale to their small and eager, beloved child.
Watching this movie today made finally certain that it is film and television that I want to be studying next year. It also made me desperate to read again, of course first beginning with The English Patient, by Michael Ondaatje which I understand is quite different to the film but I’m sure will be equally brilliant.
Finally, I’m too young to know but am now eager to find out if a love exists like those explored and portrayed in The English Patient.