Wednesday, July 23, 2008


I'd never heard of Mike Mills. Wait, isn't he the other guy in R.E.M.? Oh, never mind. When suttonhoo linked to him, I liked it, especially the graffiti and the Thumbsucker graphics. So I added Thumbsucker to my Netflix queue and bumped it to the top. I fully expected it to fit my perception of independent movies: a long (or long-seeming) exploration of quirky characters, an exploration of a meandering path that has no destination, an experience at the end of which I'd apologize to Aerie for making her sit through it. And it did fit that perception, sort of. Except for Keanu Reeves' cigarette-smoking dentist. A dentist/spiritual guide. I found myself inexplicably thinking of Danny Aiello's chiropractor/spiritual guide in Jacob's Ladder, though that movie was a very different sort of experience. But in Thumbsucker Neo is kind enough to summarize for us, and lo and behold, I suddenly liked the movie. I guess I prefer my art spoon-fed:

"I don't know. I guess I stopped trying to be anything and accepted myself and all my human disorder. You might want to do the same.... No, really. Look, Justin: there was nothing wrong with you."

"It felt like everything was wrong with me."

"That's because we all want to be problemless, to fix ourselves. We look for some magic solution to make us all better, but none of us really know what we're doing. And why is that so bad? That's all we humans can do: guess, try, hope. But Justin, just pray you don't fool yourself into thinking you've got the answer. Because that's bullshit. The trick is living without an answer. I think."


suttonhoo said...

yay! thanks for this. it's in my queue too -- I heard the author of the book interviewed a long time back but had no idea there was a movie until I stumbled across that image stream.

"living without an answer." yes.

I, Rodius said...

I liked the "I think." And the laugh. It was just the acknowledgement of the irony of saying "the answer to living is living without an answer" that I needed.

Oh, and Vince Vaughn and his hair were pretty perfect, too.

Related Posts with Thumbnails