For whatever reason, on the listing it was and when I saw the title I was shocked. I explained to my mom how I knew of its existence (Tumblr once again) and the fact that apparently it has caused many a Cumberbabe a large amount of traumatic sobbing. So, my mother did what any good parent of a young woman obsessed with a British actor confronted with a film he stars in would do - she insisted we watch it.
How do I describe this movie without giving it all away? Let me use two songs that I'd been listening to before I watched the film and for some bizarre (and also coincidental reason) fit rather well with the whole scheme of things:
(Of Monters and Men, I can't stop listening to this song. And this was before I correlated it to the movie. What is this sorcery?)
(Many thanks to my mother for listening to the Current and encountering this song in all its symphonic, melancholic glory.)
In words, rather than music, this film was absolutely amazing. Tragic, surprisingly humorous, a film with one of the most striking cinematography I've seen, beautifully written,... and it made me cry. Quite a bit. And I always give films brownie points for doing that (because I use to cry a lot during films; I cried through the entire third Lord of the Rings movie when I first saw it, but I think that's because I saw it as a metaphor for change in my life. And now I cry less often due to much effort to hide my emotions. So extra kudos to those that get me to tear up).
1) The title: Third Star is a reference to a line uttered by James, quoting Peter Pan: "Third Star to the right and straight on 'til morning." Considering that JM Barrie spent a lot of time dwelling on death as his brother died when he was very young and his mother mentioned that his brother would never grow up, this was a wonderfully fitting line and title. Also, the film reminded me a bit of Finding Neverland, mostly because I think they are both the rare film that I love and yet it tortures me with its narrative progression.
2) I would like to take a moment to recognize that half of this film is a group of men talking about their emotions. There is too little of this onscreen; apparently having emotions is a "feminine" concept and thus the tendency is for men to be fierce and violent rather than talking about they feel and having a greater emotional range than anger and nonchalance. Third Star does a wonderful job expanding an emotional range onscreen for men while also doing a good job of expressing them as rather realistic human beings. It's neither just a buddy adventure story nor tearjerker; it's both of these and interweaves them elegantly.
|Hattie Dalton, director of Third Star (http://exiteuthanasia.files.wordpress.com)|
3) Thematics and stuff: The issues presented in this film, with death, agency (having control over one's life), coping, and friendship were exquisitely conveyed and, even though by the end of film I felt like I'd had my heart ripped out of my chest and set on fire, it was strangely... nice. There's a strange sort of enjoyment in watching a tragic film that leaves me feeling more vibrant and more alive than the usual happy ending. Which is kind of troubling, because I rarely want to watch a sad movie. But there's almost a sense of exuberance at the emotional roller coaster that one's experienced, that it's nice to know you can feel these emotions and yet not actually have them affect your immediate life. I'll admit, it's sort of twisted. But there is something appealing about tragedies that draws me in, that causes me to react to them more deeply. They have a special space of appreciation in my heart.