February 11, 2010

The Hurt Locker is a film about war, but it really is a film about the humanity in war, and the struggle between the two. We see a man who loves his country being entrenched so deeply into his role as part of the fabric of war that he no longer knows how to exists outside of it. He is a good man. A strong man. A brave man. But he is also just a shell of a man. A product of the system he serves. His survival depends as much on his ability to disarm the bombs as in their mere existence. What happens when the war ends? When he has to return home to face his child and wife, permanently? Will he know how to relate to his son the joys and sorrows of his life? Will he learn to love more than one thing in his life…again? I hope so.

When I first heard the name “The Hurt Locker”, it immediately conjured up images of a world of pain, and being trapped within. Having now seen the film, I realize that it’s a place locked not from the outside, but from within – a cocoon.

We all have our own hurt locker…you know, that dark, comfortable place that you go to, that space you sink into, a secret garden of your pain and sorrow and regret and guilt, growing into a forest too dense for anyone else to forge into. It is a cocoon of pain. But it’s also a familiar pain – you know how it feels, how it moves, how it molds, and it is yours, and no one else’s. And when the world can explode at any moment, being inside the vortex, inside the hurt locker, is maybe not so bad.

You are the sleeping beauty, and outside is just the functional façade that faces this cold, cold world.

Inside, it’s warm.

(And Alone)

Grace Wang, Toronto on her review of The Hurt Locker at Roger Ebert’s website

Personally I liked Up in The Air much more, but you can’t ignore the gripping tensions of The Hurt Locker. Maybe it’s because I can’t correlate the movie to my perception of life. Then again, maybe I’m distracted when I watched it yesterday.

Distraction. It’s getting rare these days.


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