Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Job Loss, Great Depression, "The Night of the Hunter"

I arrived at work today to find an email awaiting from a friend asking whether I'd heard these rumors about a third of Goldman's bankers getting the axe, talk of no bonuses, etc.

A minute later, a message from another friend whose financial services company finds out today what (large) percentage of people are receiving pink slips, and what groups will be gone entirely; his boss, who often works virtually, came into the office today.

"Such a weird day...its so dark outside and people are finding out if they're getting fired," he said.

I glanced out the window and, shudder. What sad, scary times.

I tried to think of some funny Great Depression clips to cheer myself up, but the first thing that came to mind was the crazy, awesome movie I watched (fell asleep to) last night, "The Night of the Hunter," which takes place in GD times.

It's an old movie (1955), so while I'd read up on it and how "revolutionary" it was, how it really pushed the envelope, how psychologically thrilling and eerie it was -- "Yeah, sure," I thought. "It's old. Can't be anything compared to what these eyes have seen."


It's about a religious fanatic, who's a self-dubbed "Preacher." He (Robert Mitchum) has LOVE and HATE tattooed across the knuckles of his right and left hands, respectively (This is also a classic movie that, when you watch it, you immediately get references that are dropped in modern movies that you'd heretofore glossed over.) He roams the countryside killing women after the Lord hath spoken to him.

There are scenes of him in erotic dance houses, as he sits in the audience watching the women writhe with a vicious, loathsome, yet clearly yearning, look on his face. It's chill-inducing.

He finally has to go to jail for a stolen car. While there he meets a man who's been sentenced to death for killing two men and stealing their $10,000 (There's a line where the imprisoned man says he was just too tired of these oblivious, rich, banker-types stealing money from the rest of the impoverished U.S., which I thought resonated to today's time). The Preacher learns that the man's only told his two children (aged 9 and 4) where the money is.

Upon release, the Preacher finds the family, marries the wife, tells her in one of the eeriest scenes I've seen in a long time that he will never consummate the marriage; her body is only for childbearing; and that she's a horrible sinner. The acting is amazing and he goes on to brainwash her and ... well, we'll leave it at that.

A little more scary and depressing than fearing the loss of one's job. But ...

I screened "Splinter" and "Role Models" yesterday. I put "The Night of the Hunter" in too attempt to remind myself that I like movies.

The trailer kind of makes it just look like some old movie, but it's really twisted.

1 comment:

Paramendra Bhagat said...

"..his boss, who often works virtually, came into the office today..."