No Country for Old Men did distract me from the indoor soccer injury I sustained a few hours earlier last night.
The Big Z declined to view the movie:
The review says this is “is bleak, scary and relentlessly violent.”
I think I’ll pass.
The film is spare.
I felt, as we walked out of the theater recovering from the abrupt non-ending, that I could have done without the nihilism, however….I woke up this morning in physical pain (drats) yet . . . actively optimistic.
“This country is hard on people”, as the sheriff’s brother says, because “we the people” have made – as in: allowed, enabled, fought, dreamed….choose your verb based on degree of passivity-intention – “it” (this country, our societies, “the world” ) this way. Rolling Stone, in their review, puts it this way:
“No Country carries in its bones the virus of what we’ve become. The Coens squeeze us without mercy in a vise of tension and suspense, but only to force us to look into an abyss of our own making.”
We, “the people,” *could* re-make it differently, with effort, cooperation, vision.
DISCLAIMER: I was recently in Jerusalem.
“Jerusalem Syndrome. It affects completely sane tourists without any psychiatric or drug abuse history. They arrive with normal tour groups and suddenly they develop what Bar-El calls a “specific imperative psychotic reaction.” In all cases, the same clinical picture emerges. It begins with general anxiety and nervousness and then the tourist feels an imperative need to visit the holy places. First, he undertakes a series of purification rituals like shaving all his body hair, cutting his nails and washing himself over and over before he dons white clothes. Most often, he lifts the white sheets from his hotel room. Then he begins to cry or to sing Biblical or religious songs in a very loud voice.
“The next step is an actual visit to the holy places, most often from the life of Jesus. The afflicted tourist begins to deliver a sermon–which is frequently a confused oration–where he exhorts humanity to change their behavior by becoming calmer, purer, and less sophisticated or worldly.
“Dr. Freud–whoops, Dr. Bar-El, says that from the psychiatric point of view, the most interesting thing is that besides this curious psychotic reaction, the patient doesn’t see strange things or hear voices, and he recalls everything that happens. He knows he is John Smith or Will O’Casey, he doesn’t lose his own identity, and the illness passes completely in five to seven days. Sometimes, the afflicted visitor is on a package tour of the Mediterranean which includes Greece, Egypt and Israel. He may be completely sane in Greece, he develops Jerusalem Syndrome in Israel, it passes in five days, and then he continues on with the group to Egypt.
“From a religious point of view, the Syndrome seems to favor Protestants . . . . In an average year, about 40 tourists require hospitalization for psychiatric illness.”