(OH... and just as a matter of continuity, there's a lot of discussion going on about people going for a swim but no one ever dives in the water... and after Paul takes his overalls off, once Jamie exits the shot and the camera pulls back, said overalls are gone. BAD CONTINUITY, OR DISCONCERTING DREAMLIKE FLASHBACK? You be the judge! ;) )
I mean, I'm hoping all of this is intended, because later in the film when Eugene has the extended memory up in the attic of his middle-aged self (Campbell Scott) presumably continuing to spy out the window at Phoebe and Paul... well, there's really nothing there to indicate a sort of predatory marriage where she's trapped with some creeper who seduced her. They look... well, fairly mundane, but happy. So are we meant to presume that every negative aspect of the flashback sequences are indicative of Eugene's guilt and remorse, beating himself up over the choices he made (or didn't make)? It's hard to resolve that notion, to be honest, since the film never gives us any sort of climactic moment where he comes to terms verbally with his guilt (again, the budding friendship with Zooey could have been utilized really effectively in this way.) Indeed, slow as it can be at times, at 88 minutes the film feels bereft of a lot of resolutions w/ regard to character development; how does Caroline's rekindled acquaintance with an old flame correlate to her husband suddenly showing up (in the last 5 minutes of the movie!) to try and save their marriage? And maybe selfishly, I love James Rebhorn and seeing as how this was his last film, would have loved the town minister to have a little more to do. ;)
(It should also be pointed out that, just as a casting aside, Bonnie Wright both enhances and negatively exacerbates this notion of Phoebe being perpetually young from Eugene's perspective. She just has one of those faces that is extremely girlish (she's 24, but without much makeup she looks about 15), and Jamie (though he is a youthful 41) definitely looks considerably older. So that whole sequence - while it clearly seems intended to be uncomfortable - plays out considerably more so than it should, really.)
Thoughts, anyone who has access to the film at this point?
Edited at 2015-03-09 12:30 am (UTC)