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NF-Lee's Gildor and Frodo

Heath Ledger: article by Reed Johnson, plus some screencaps....

Posted on 2008.01.24 at 15:34

Comments:


frodosweetstuff
frodosweetstuff at 2008-01-25 13:57 (UTC) (Link)
I didn't know much about him and I loved the article you posted - very well written and thought-provoking.

Not sure though why the writer called Jack Twist "emotionally evasive"? *puzzled*
Mechtild
mechtild at 2008-01-25 17:56 (UTC) (Link)
It was a great article. I said to someone above that I loved the way he not only lifted up and defined so much that was significant and memorable about Ledger and his performances, but he put it all in the perspective of the wider culture, showing how significant his contributions were even beyond the world of people who like good films or like to swoon for actors.

"Emotionally evasive". I wish he had been more specific, but I think I know what he meant. I am guessing he meant the way Jack tended to tell partial truths. (Ennis was always the height of plain-spoken, and was terribly transparent when he was trying to cover something up intentionally, like his explanations to Alma when dashing off on the fishing trips.) The example that first comes to mind is in their last camping trip when Jack tells Ennis that he's having an affair with the ranch foreman's wife. He is having an affair with the ranch foreman, in fact, and they both plan to leave their wives and go up to Wyoming, to help on Jack's father's ranch while starting up a place of their own on the property--as Jack's cold, mean-tempered father reveals in the scene when Ennis comes up to Lightning Flats, offering to scatter Jack's ashes on Brokeback Mountain.

I actually think Jack was about to tell Ennis about his plans (to leave him and make a life with someone who was willing) there by the river, when he said, "The truth is...." He pauses for a long time, then says "Sometimes I miss you so much I can't stand it." Personally, I think what he was steeling himself to say was, "The truth is, I'm going to leave you to start a new life with someone who is willing to start a new life, since you won't" (or words to that effect in Jack-talk). But he can't do it, or is afraid to do it, saying instead the reason why he has been unfaithful (because he is unsatisfied with such an intermittent affair with no prospect of ever living together), and why he intends to leave Ennis.

That's just my interpretation of Jake Gyllenhal's delivery of that line, of course. But the fact remains that he told Ennis that he was bedding the foreman's wife when really he was having a serious affair with the foreman himself. I think that when Jack asked Ennis if he hadn't thought about marrying again (which was why Ennis volunteered the information that he was "putting the blocks" to a waitress in Riverton, but wasn't interested in anything past that), he was hoping to hear that Ennis had some other options, *because* Jack would feel less guilty when he told Ennis that he was going to enter into a real, living-together relationship before it was too late. But he never does tell Ennis, and Ennis knows nothing about it until he hears it out of the mouth of Jack's father, after Jack is dead.

Gee, that turned into a long answer! I guess your comment got me thinking.

Edited at 2008-01-25 05:59 pm (UTC)
frodosweetstuff
frodosweetstuff at 2008-01-27 15:53 (UTC) (Link)
Yes, agree with you about putting it in perspective. That made this more than just an article about the death of a goodlooking actor.

he was hoping to hear that Ennis had some other options, *because* Jack would feel less guilty when he told Ennis that he was going to enter into a real, living-together relationship before it was too late. But he never does tell Ennis, and Ennis knows nothing about it until he hears it out of the mouth of Jack's father, after Jack is dead.
I have only seen the film once and never read the story so I may be wrong but my interpretation of this was never that he was hoping that Ennis had someone else so he would feel less guilty. The way I saw it Ennis had disppointed him again and again and so he wasn't feeling guilty at all - sad maybe but not guilty. I think it was more that he hoped that Ennis would surprise him and choose him or offer hope that he would choose to be with him one day.

But as I said, only saw it once so I might remember it wrong.
Mechtild
mechtild at 2008-01-27 23:42 (UTC) (Link)
The way I saw it Ennis had disppointed him again and again and so he wasn't feeling guilty at all - sad maybe but not guilty. I think it was more that he hoped that Ennis would surprise him and choose him or offer hope that he would choose to be with him one day.

I actually think that's probably a better assessment of the situation from Jack's POV, Frodosweetstuff. Thanks for taking the time to articulate it. You might only have seen it once, but you were paying keen attention. :)

Edited at 2008-01-27 11:43 pm (UTC)
frodosweetstuff
frodosweetstuff at 2008-01-28 15:30 (UTC) (Link)
*beams* :)
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