You are currently browsing the tag archive for the ‘Evan Rachel Wood’ tag.

Darren Aronofsky’s first three feature-length films all elicited a very visceral reaction from me.  I watched Pi in AP Stats and found it sublimely confusing; it was exciting to realize a movie could be so off the wall and yet so compelling.  Requiem for a Dream is nearly unwatchable.  I was bored out of my gourd.  The Fountain, on the other hand, is probably one of my favorite movies of all time.  The three movies, of course, are exceedingly different, so I didn’t really know what expectations I should have going into The Wrestler.  Strangely, while the film is different in style and tone from its predecessors, it is much more accessible and yet (or maybe therefore) had much less of an impact on me.

Maybe it isn’t surprising that The Wrestler sticks out among Aronofsky’s work.  It is the only film he didn’t write himself, Robert D. Siegel gets the credit for this one.  And the story has a much more linear feel than Aronofsky’s earlier films.

That’s not to say I disliked The Wrestler.  I liked it just fine, I guess I was hoping to be a bit more affected.  The main character, Mickey Rourke’s Randy the Ram, is certainly compelling in theory.  Once at the top of the professional wrestling world, he now ekes out a living doing third-rate shows in fourth-rate towns, doing promotional signings in rec centers with over the hill wrestlers, and supplementing it all with a job hauling stuff at a local supermarket.  He lives (when he can make the payments) in a rented trailer, and the only person with whom he can have a conversation seems to be his favorite stripper at a random joint.  He’s a sad person, someone who lives and breathes and is only good for one thing, and he’s no longer supposed to do that.

In my mind, though, Aronofsky and Rourke dehumanize The Ram.  He’s unable to have prolonged interactions with other people.  He can’t maintain a relationship with his daughter.  Can’t hold a steady job.  His life has become professional wrestling.  Not in the sense that he’s obsessed with it, rather that’s just who he is and what he was made for, like a machine built for a certain task, he was made to wrestle.  Even his nickname, “The Ram”, acts to dehumanize him.  And I’d argue that this dehumanization leads to a certain inevitability about The Ram’s path.  So it is hard to feel badly for The Ram’s failures at life outside of professional wrestling any more than a Roomba’s life outside vacuuming.  It may be tragic he was molded into a machine, but I’m not sure there’s anything inherently sad about a machine doing what it does until it can no longer go.

Read the rest of this entry »

Advertisements
April 2019
S M T W T F S
« Jan    
 123456
78910111213
14151617181920
21222324252627
282930  
Advertisements