Wednesday, July 10, 2013

3 Short Paragraphs: Seeking a Friend for the End of the World

2012, Lorene Scafaria (wrote Nick and Norah's Infinite Playlist) -- download

"That was a sweet movie, " is something I am prone to say when a movie strikes my sentimental nerve. But to call this movie only a RomCom or ChickFlick is disingenuous. When a movie about the end of the world is actually about how two people meet each other, pigeon holing might be the thing you want to veer away from. But really, it was sweet, something that Steve Carell seems to be typecast in. Ever since The 40 Year Old Virgin, he has established himself as the middle-aged guy that people are supposed to root for.  Where the guy my age, lost in his middle-age actually comes ahead.

Keira Knightley is Penny, Dodge Petersen's neighbour. She is the dotty 20sumthin with a terrible boyfriend and a sleep disorder. On the night Dodge's wife runs away (literally) she has a fight with her boyfriend and ends up sleeping on Dodge's sofa. I should point out that the world is ending around them. This is Deep Impact if the space shuttle had not blown the big comet Wolf up. Civilization is falling apart around them but these two are more concerned with lost loves and the love of family then how it will all end. Both were a little lost in  their lives but find each other. "You were the love of my life, " Dodge whispers to Penny with days left.

I am rather fond of End of the World scenarios, since my days of playing Gamma World and imagining myself as the sole survivor having free pick of the mall bookstore and not having to deal with annoying people, i.e. everyone.  But this is not your average movie that highlights the comet and the ensuing disaster. While we do encounter other people's reaction to the End of the World: riots, orgies, parties where people try drugs they never considered before, baptisms, etc. the movie is rather calm and collected about it if occasionally farcical. What struck me was the quiet, as the two drive the countryside of New Jersey seeing a lot of people at ease with the events. And when it does end, it ends on the quietest and sweetest of moments. The survivalist mutants must come in the sequel.