as harold [crick] took a bite of bavarian sugar cookie, he finally felt as if everything was going to be ok. sometimes, when we lose ourselves in fear and despair, in routine and constancy, in hopelessness and tragedy, we can thank god for bavarian sugar cookies. and, fortunately, when there aren’t any cookies, we can still find reassurance in a familiar hand on our skin, or a kind and loving gesture, or subtle encouragement, or a loving embrace, or an offer of comfort, not to mention hospital gurneys and nose plugs, an uneaten danish, soft-spoken secrets, and fender stratocasters, and maybe – the occasional piece of fiction. and we must remember that all these things, the nuances, the anomalies, the subtleties, which we assume only accessorize our days, are effective for a much larger and nobler cause. they are here to save our lives. i know the idea seems strange, but i also know that it just so happens to be true.
voice-over by kay eiffel, played by emma thompson
i never had the desire to watch will farrell’s attempt at honest, somber acting – especially in a movie where an author was narrating the life of an actual human being whom, coincidentally, was also the main character of her new book. i mean, seriously, how is this even a convincing plot? but being a polite house guest i sat down on the last night of my holiday vacation to watch a movie that i was silently dreading.
how wrong was i.
so wrong that the moment the end credits began rolling i turned to the fanatic that had suggested we watch the film and said, “i absolutely love this movie. i cannot believe i haven’t watched it earlier.”
in researching a little bit more about the meaning of the film i found this brilliant line in a new york times movie review (2006):
“stranger than fiction….traffics in a bit of darkly funny existential anxiety, it also finds room for romantic fantasy and sentimental uplift….citing the Italian novelist italo calvino, [the professor, dustin hoffman’s character] notes that any story must fall into one of the two categories, affirming either the inevitability of death or the continuity (traditionally through the prospect of a marriage) of life.”
perhaps it is the deep allegorical meaning to the purpose of living that the audience can attempt to decipher (note: i would like to refute the above citation of italo calvino – not necessarily the two categories of life but that definitely the former, the continuity of life, doesn’t necessarily need to be through a union or marriage but more so through one self finding a new meaning, or purpose, in life) or the subtle philosophical undercurrent that triggers us to reflect on our own existence in which the film’s appeal stems from. or perhaps it allows us – for a split second – to question if we do in fact control our own fate….if we have control over how noisy our lives can become.
after all, isn’t that what each of our respective lives are anyway – a mere story unfolding with each day we wake up breathing; our own self playing the main character?
indeed, each one of us is a harold crick.