Sorry this subject took so long to get back to but I had to watch this movie first.
" The song
" that started this search that I referred to that led me to Jurgen Habermas, Edmund Husserl
and " Lifeworld
" that ( Carmela
) posted was one of the " theme songs
" of this movie
; called: " Synecdoche New York
". This staggering movie portrayal of multiple themes woven together on such a massive scale and the related philosophical material has aided me by providing a vehicle to delve much deeper into this relationship of ( story
) as a tool for the exploration of meaning and how it is relevant to the life process of " The Hero's Journey
". ( Film critic Roger Ebert called the movie one of the best films of the decade when it was released in 2009; and named it the 11th best film of all time overall.
Theater director Caden Cotard is mounting a new play. Fresh off of a successful production of Death of a Salesman, he has traded in the suburban blue-hairs and regional theater of Schenectady for the cultured audiences and bright footlights of Broadway. Armed with a MacArthur grant and determined to create a piece of brutal realism and honesty, something into which he can put his whole self, he gathers an ensemble cast into a warehouse in Manhattan's theater district. He directs them in a celebration of the mundane, instructing each to live out their constructed lives in a small mockup of the city outside. As the city inside the warehouse grows, Caden's own life veers wildly off the tracks. The shadow of his ex-wife Adele, a celebrated painter who left him years ago for Germany's art scene, sneers at him from every corner. Somewhere in Berlin, his daughter Olive is growing up under the questionable guidance of Adele's friend, Maria. He's helplessly driving his marriage to actress
( This is one of over 220 reviews that I thought summed up my impressions.
A thought-provoking, challenging Kaufman experience., 20 December 2008
Author: commandercool88 from United States
syn⋅ec⋅do⋅che: a figure of speech in which a part is used for the whole or the whole for a part, the special for the general or the general for the special 'Synecdoche, New York' marks Charlie Kaufman's directorial debut. A monumental event on its own right. It is a maddening venture, a staggering project to face life's greatest of mysteries. Kaufman takes us on a soul-searching journey, one that he is taking every bit as much as we. It is a trip unlike any I have ever seen, and to say that I enjoyed it would be a very difficult thing to say. But 'Synecdoche' seems to be pointing towards something very profound, as undecipherable as it may appear. A flawed masterpiece, and a risk Kaufman seems willing to take.
There's nothing easy about 'Synecdoche', it is one of the most difficult films I've sat through. It's the sprawling story of one man's life, a tragic life. Philip Seymour Hoffman gives a harrowing performance as his character attempts to create a play of realism and honesty. And even as he dives head first into his work, his own life is in a perpetual state of free fall. A wife who leaves him, a daughter out of his life, relationships that crash and burn. His play, inside a warehouse where he has reconstructed New York City for people to live our their ordinary lives, becomes a fruitless and maddening descent into unhappiness and destruction.
What is 'Synecdoche' about? Is it one man's search for meaning in the midst of meaninglessness? That in order to appreciate the preciousness of life, we must accept the inherent chaos. Existence is what we make of it, and it is the choices we make that shape and define who we are and the lives we lead. Every choice brings with it a million different consequences, some seen and others that go unnoticed.
Kaufman tells us we are one in a world of many. We each play a starring role in the story of our life. People we meet every day, those we know and love. Never will we truly know them, their thoughts, or why they do what they do. And maybe it's not up to us to decipher what we will never understand. We must look inward, not to others, to find peace and insight.
If life is a play, the world is our stage. We only have this one shot, no second chances. We try to control our projectories, cast roles that need to be filled. In the end, what does it matter? Will the world miss us when we're gone? Life is what you make of it. 'Synecdoche, New York' dares to search for meaning, reconcile paradoxes to which there are no answers. But that doesn't keep Kaufman from giving it his best, as tedious and heart-wrenching as it may sometimes be.
( As a side note I will offer that the one element I found missing that to me Joseph Campbell focused on
was that of ( Compassion
and the joyful participaton in the sorrows of the world
). This understanding
being utilized as a means of discovering a deeper and more meaningful dimension of the individual experience of ( living in the world
); and also the inevitable " Vale of Tears
" that all human beings must face and grapple with in their personal encounter with the hard fact of seeing " the reality of life as it is
" that he refers to so often in his work. )
More movie background:
Other links on philosophical exploration:
Here is a very short clip of a 5 part series by the late Rick Roderick on Jurgen Habermas:
The whole lecture:
Roderick was a real " maverick " it seems; and had a devoted following. His life story of struggle from a wasteland of ignorance and poverty in his journey towards philosophy was as much a testament to the philosophers he taught as what they had to say. I was so deeply moved by the outpouring of his fan base and the lives he touched by his downhome accessible West Texas approach; and his fearless uncompromising style of interpretation that was so different from the enlightenment that so many academics have imprisoned and separated from the student's thirst and longing to understand. More on him:
( As a last addition again for those curious; a description from wikipedia of the term " Lifeworld ". ):