The Railway Man

Friday, 3 January 2014

Today, in the toilet at the Cameo Cinema, The Police were playing.  The entire album of Outlandos D'Amour, which was pretty cool.  And so I did a wee to the rather apt strains of So Lonely.

I went to the movies alone because it's sort of empowering going to the movies alone, don't you reckon?   Maybe especially when you're feeling lonely.  Nothing like being held by the Great Dark Womb, munching a popcorn/Maltesers combo.  Soothing stuff.

I saw The Railway Man which was quite wonderful although probably not really all that soothing.  It was also very symmetrical because the seat I got allocated was right in the middle in the very back row.  The curtains squeaked ever so slightly as they opened to their full we're-past-the-ads-now-prepare-for-the-feature width.  I was the youngest person there, which doesn't happen very often these days. 

The movie was about a whole lot of things - the futility of war, about shame, about PTSD, and ultimately about forgiveness and redemption and all them big-band beautiful sounds.  Which is pretty interesting because a great deal of it was about the horrors of what one bunch of people will do to another bunch of people in the name of whatever it is they're fighting for.

I would love to have the solidity and faithfulness of Patti Lomax but unfortunately the reality is that I'm closer to Eric, even though that leaves me in the crappy position of feeling bad comparing my own traumas to his astronomical ones and therefore finding myself wanting and thus increasing the loneliness quotient.  After all, I have never suffered the sorts of atrocities he suffered while a POW in the Second World War on the Burma Railway.  I simply don't know how he survived.

But that was only one self-absorbed component of the flavours that I've been left from this movie because it really is very good.  And my, Colin Firth proves again that he is a wonderful actor.

More people than usual sat silent at the end of this movie when the credits rolled.  And from my position at the back, I got to inspect just how many people were wiping their eyes.  But of course we were all good cinemagoers and managed to keep ourselves intact.  Nary a bursting sob ensued, though I think there were probably a few people, like me, holding themselves back.

Great stuff.  Highly recommended.


  1. Oooo, the Police. I think I could do pretty much anything to their music! Big love.

    I enjoy going to the movies alone. Sometimes, there is a stigma attached, or even pity towards those that do. Like there is no one else to go with, rather than a choice.
    And, the Cameo is such a cool cinema. Reminds me of some of the old movie theatres I'd go to in W.A.
    They had a faded grand-ness that I love - especially the curtains, as you say. I love old dark velvet curtains - yes, so like being in the womb.
    Although, pick your movie. The more popular one's are full of irritating blue lights from iPhones. That takes ones (well, mine anyway) immersion in the movie away.
    Sorry, one of my biggest pet hates ( I have many), is lack of cinema etiquette.
    Popcorn and maltesers? Together? Oh my. Clearly, I am living under a rock. What does that taste like?
    Sounds like an interesting movie. Will have to catch it on DVD. Oh wait, DVD Destination... gone.

    1. Sigh... one's?? Should do a quick proof read before I post, haha :)

    2. Popcorn and Maltesers really works for me - I think it's the combination of sweet and salty. But then, I make corn pasta and then mix sesame oil, Vegemite and a bit of tomato paste through it, so I'm possibly not a very good judge :)

      I am sooooo with you on the cinema etiquette!


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