On Some Movieson August 22, 2013 at 2:03 pm
For the record, Forrest approached me with this comic defensively, like a man making a pitch for a space elevator to a Christian investment fund. But naw, man. I’m down with the slapstick.
No segue today, gents and ladies. I’m too busy for coherence.
The man screaming “mama” during the Normandy Beach invasion in Saving Private Ryan is easily he most haunting thing I’ve seen on film. Or ever, perhaps. I don’t get out much. I love that movie, but I don’t think I can ever watch it again. I probably don’t need to.
I have the same problem with Forrest Gump, but that’s not because of any horrifying plausibility so much as its being a carefully constructed weapon of mass distraughtion. Forrest Gump is essentially about a life of unwitting tragedy and triumph with no middle-ground. Forrest (Gump) is either shaking hands with the President or burying his wife with nothing in between but fifteen seconds on a park bench so he can set up either the story about how his best friend had his legs blown off or the one about how the same best friend became an accidental millionaire.
I suppose the idea was to leave Forrest (Gump) a blank to allow you to take the brunt of the emotional impact of all of this, but the sheer lack of moderation makes the thing seem really contrived to me, more of a psychological experiment than a story.
Point is, I’ve only seen both of these films once, and that was enough. Making that kind of impact is impressive.