Amour is a difficult film to watch, but worth it. If you’re feeling discouraged about mortality, Amour will put things in perspective.
It’s a stunning film, one that stays with you. Depressing? Actually, it didn’t hit me that way, maybe because I was a bit confused about the ending, so went online to gain clarity. There I found an essay asserting this isn’t the way most of us will end our days, and the film is ageist in painting elderhood with such despair. I hope so.
The rest of this post contains some spoilage, so you might choose to stop reading here.
Anne and Georges love each other deeply and in spite of their advanced age enjoy a rich life. Then she has a stroke, at which time both of them reveal their strength and in his case, heroism.
After the first stroke, Anne reveals to Georges that she would prefer to die. She tries and fails to refuse food and liquids. Then she has a second stroke and loses the ability to enforce her decision. This is one of the main aspects of the film that resonates with me, what most of us fear – that we’ll wait too long to make the choice, or that we’ll have no choice and will have to live out our final days (years?) regardless of the impact on our loved ones.
The upside of Amour was that it put things in perspective. My aches and pains seemed laughable and my existential fears no more than childish superstitions compared to the reality portrayed in this movie. I was also left with the determination, should I ever be struck by a horrible terminal affliction, to move immediately to a state that permits me to end my life when I chose.
Did you see Amour? What did you think, and/or how did it make you feel? If you haven’t seen the trailer, here it is.
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