Saturday, April 24, 2010
"These guys must be crazy," I was told by someone I know. He was referring to those who keep fighting no matter how bleak things look. "Why would someone of retirement age stuck in the rubber room not just retire," he said? I can't explain it but I understand it. I could add: Why fight Unity Caucus? Why stand up to BloomKlein when they own the world, including the press?
I had no easy answer for my friend but I thought of that guy standing in front of the tank in Tianamen Square. Or the people who stand up for human rights against Putin in Russia no matter how many of their friends are killed. Or any number of people throughout history who were mad as hell and wouldn't take it any more.
I thought of this as I was watching the academy award foreign language winning film The Secret in Their Eyes (Argentina) on Friday. One review states:
"A thoroughly entertaining murder mystery, The Secret in Their Eyes (El secreto de sus ojos) stars Ricardo Darín (Nine Queens) as a retired prosecutor who can't let go of a 25-year-old rape and murder that he considers still unsolved, but solvable."
Benjamin, the detective, is relentless in pursuing answers. But the movie is really about passion. His 25 year unrequited passion for his married boss, who may have had similar passions (they keep you guessing.) The unending passion of a husband for his murdered wife. Benjamin's alcoholic sidekick Sandoval helps track the killer by figuring out he is a passionate soccer fan. "You can change almost anything," he tells Benjamin. "But you can't change passion. It will always win out."
Maybe that passion is what explains so many unexplainable actions by so many people. And thank goodness for these crazy, passionate people. If not for them we would all be living like the zombies in that revolutionary Apple commercial at the 1984 Super Bowl. Or like the drones at Tweed.
I saw Bogart in "Have and Have Not" last night and there is a similar relationship between him and the Walter Brennan character who also makes a case for drinking, just as Sandoval did.