May 2, 2011

Meet Joe Black, 1998

Meet Joe Black, 1998
Director: Martin Brest
Cast: Brad Pitt, Anthony Hopkins, Claire Forlani

Stage: Home TV selection

Joe Black in short: Bill Parrish, media tycoon, loving father and still a human being, is about to celebrate his 65th birthday. One morning, he is contacted by the Inevitable - by hallucination, as he thinks. Later, Death itself enters his home and his life, personified in a man's body: Joe Black has arrived. His intention was to take Bill with him, but accidentally, Joe's former host and Bills beautiful daughter Susan have already met. Joe begins to develop certain interest in life on earth as well as in Susan, who has no clue who she's flirting with.

Preps: Good cast, good storyline, good time to see this again.

Reality: One of the finest stories in the last decade. How to face the devil or how to accept you are dying - what to do next, what to do in the days that are left. Who to tell and in what way. And what to do if the devil is living with you in your last few days and just happens to flirt with your daughter.

Some of the questions, the movie is trying to answer. In my head, the most important one is how to indulge the days that are left and what to do with the remaining time. Do you actually look behind and try to improve some unjustice you might have done.. or do you act as if nothing happened, like Bill doesn't in this piece. The viewer is left with truly funny scenes of trying to implement the devil in god's body into his family, with some obscene lies that are put together because the identity of the devil must remain unknown, yet a complete stranger is walking through the family bedrooms and bad enough, flirting with the only child (that is unfortunately, up to the third of the movie, already taken by another man).

Now, the development between the beauty and the beast in the disguise is extremely interesting, the dialogues are well put together and also executed - you even get the feeling that Death /or Devil, you might put it as you wish, is a good man, that causes also redemption and forgives the sins you might have done. And cures /or puts people to the eternal rest upon their wish.

How deep is the circle we are living in and what is beyond -something to be terrified about or something to look forward to? This movie implies there is nothing to be afraid of, therefore it also implies the existance of heaven, God, Death also in impersonated figure and also, room for improvement, while you are still on Earth, living and breathing. The love game between Joe and Susan seems real, but may be hard to take. Hopkins cast is brilliant, firm figure of the power that is not yet willing to go. Yet to God, we must all bend - the movie says so. I remain doubtful. A good piece, but doesn't go hand in hand with my atheistic approach. Or philosophical seeking for the proof of concept.

My personal rating: 7,5 ( a strong piece in making you think about life versus death, things you need to go through before you leave this place. And a solid love story).

Meet Joe Black on IMDB

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