Thursday, October 16, 2014
Seeing Ourselves on the Big Screen
I cry every time that I watch the end of Fellini's masterpiece 8 1/2. When I told my students this the last time I showed it in a film class, they look quite puzzled.
At the end of this stunning film, Fellini reminds us that an entire cast of characters has created and acted within the chaotic and joyful screenplay of our lives. So perhaps the older one gets, the more this resonates as she has more faces to remember, more aches and joys, etc.
The film is also deeply beautiful and real as it highlights the internal disarray of all human beings--and the role of the artist to accurately and honestly recreate this confusion. This is one reason why at least some of the films we watch should make us feel deeply unsettled, as the truthful retelling of our messy inner selves is not a comfortable thing to see on the big screen. And only after acknowledging the truth of our own messiness, can we seek redemption.
I have written a bit more in depth on this last scene of the film (and a few of the film's major themes) here at Relief Journal. Please check it out!