Friday, September 16, 2011

True Intimacy

I’m feeling bloggy again, so decided to piggyback on my last post (Grab Bag #2). I could just edit it to add these few paragraphs, but if I make a new entry I’ll appear more prolific.

A 2002 Universal Pictures production.
Screenplay by Peter Hedges, Chris Weitz, and Paul Weitz.
Image copied from IMDB. Please, don't anybody sue me.

I've mentioned The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-time, which appears to be—and starts out as—a mystery novel but is actually an urban adventure tale with an autistic teen for its protagonist. About a Boy is another contemporary British story featuring a quirky youth. In the movie based on Nick Hornby's novel, 12-year-old Marcus and his adult mentor, Will, have a conversation about sexual desire that goes like this:

   Marcus: What's the difference between a girl who's your friend and a girlfriend?

   Will: Well, I don't know... Do you want to touch her?

   Marcus: Is that so important?

   Will: Well, yeah Marcus. You’ve heard about sex, right? It’s kind of a big deal.

   Marcus: I know. I’m not stupid. I just can’t believe there’s nothing more to it. I mean, 
   I want to be with her. I want to be with her all the time. And I want to tell her things  
   that I don’t even tell you or Mom. I don’t want her to have another boyfriend. I 
   suppose if I could have all those things, I wouldn’t care if I touched her or not. [As  
   unnatural as this might seem in writing, actor Nicholas Hoult manages to make it 
   sound believable.]

   Will: Well, you’ll learn, Marcus. You won’t feel like that forever.

Marcus, his hippie mother, and Will
Some might think Marcus is the only kid in the world to feel the way he does. I disagree. (In fact, I shared his attitude when I was 12.) But Will is probably right, and by the time Marcus is 14 or 16, he'll see girls differently. (This change must happen eventually for our species to propagate.) I just wish young people wouldn't rush their sexuality, and I applaud Marcus's 12-year-old view. Although socially awkward, he understands something about intimacy that escapes his selfish and superficial elder, Will, an independently wealthy bachelor who spends most of his time trying to convince attractive ladies to let him touch them. 

This movie is about a boy trapped in a man’s body, who grows up when he gets entangled in the life of a precocious young friend. I give it an A for its humor, excellent cast (including Hugh Grant, Toni Collette, and Rachel Weisz), fine production quality, catchy soundtrack, and especially its uplifting message.

That's all for now... next time I'll probably return to my typical silly, sarcastic tone, but I wanted to share this because it's something I feel strongly about.

No comments:

Post a Comment