Hereafter

“Hereafter” is a 2010 deep and atmospheric drama rated PG-13. Its gross box office (including foreign) reached $61,747,000 as of January 30, 2011. A task of creating films that reveal even the very deep aspects of life in general, including all the downsides and misfortune, severity and reality – demands involvement of the greatest masters, who are not only cinema professionals, but also experienced in life.

And so participation of Clint Eastwood in this project is definitely in place. Eastwood, who once again acted as a “one man band” (he was the director, producer and composer), is undoubtedly experienced in dramatic storylines. It was pretty decided that “Hereafter” was in good hands, adding to the fact that the main role was played by Matt Daemon.

“Hereafter” cannot be described as a dynamic picture, but the point is to let the viewer think over each bend of the story as well as the whole message of the film. The film incorporates a clear and certain ending, even though slightly naïve, however conclusions are still not made, and the viewer is up to it.

The film depicts an intersection of three personalities, residents of different countries: French lady named Marie, who endured a tsunami; 10 years old Marcus from England, who has lost his twin brother; and George from America, who has a rare gift, which proved to be his curse. They don’t know anything about each other right until the moment they occasionally meet.

Eastwood’s work is mostly pessimistic and dark, but still the ending gives hope for the better. The film somehow gives a feeling that we must reconcile ourselves to our misfortunes and misery, while thinking about our future life instead of looking for the answers about why something went wrong in our past.

“Hereafter” leads the viewer to be affectionate to captivating personalities – factually from the leading few minutes into the story. Visual depiction of a malicious inevitable tsunami that steals the lives of many and many sets the viewer’s mood to be stunned and emptied. All of three main characters are literally touched by death, but what happens in the aftermath of their stories is surprising and uplifting.

The actors’ performances in “Hereafter” are unconditionally excellent. Matt Damon’s depicting of George, a character who was reluctant to accept his outstanding psychic ability, instead passing a way simpler existence as a factory employee… Cecile De France’s life in the story through her character Marie, a reporter from France who witnesses and survives a devastating nature cataclysm, finding it difficult to return to ‘ordinary’ living afterwards…  And Frankie & George McLaren’s work for the characters of adolescent Jason and Marcus – English twins facing life’s downside through their mom’s drug addiction and, consequently, a serious of misfortunate events that will render them detached… You literally stick to each character’s storyline which is like a railroad to an unknown destination and you eager to know what their fate has in its store for them all.

This picture is utterly dramatic, however it investigates not only the subject of after-death experience – but human’s existence itself. Clint Eastwood accomplishes an unmatched challenge at providing us a chance to gaze for a moment into the calmness and enigmatic state that is, believingly, prepared for us on the unknown side… but not forgetting the delight and exquisiteness of things that are right before us that we take for granted.

As a summary, “Hereafter” was a film that pleasantly surprised critics and viewers. Despite of the fact that some dilemmas remain unsolved after the story ends, I consider it is a unmatched and very suitable ending to a picture concerning subject as obscure as “hereafter” domain. There goes one interesting dialog in the movie, during which Thierry Neuvic’s screen character, Didier, tries to point out that if anything existed in the after-death existence, it would definitely been discovered or at least proved by the current time. And yet, as the film comes to an end, viewer is supposed to comprehend that the most delightful and astonishing deeds and occurrences in life doesn’t require any proof or discovery – but with decent confidence and involvement of fatum – human’s existence lines up precisely as it should.

Hereafter

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