Drive My Car

Drive My Car ★★★★½

We must keep on living.

Took a few shots before starting it, which like was nice frankly. Unlike when I drank before rewatching Manchester by the Sea, I was not drinking to suppress feelings, I was drinking to relax myself and leave myself open to further emotions. I am very happy to say that the past two days, yesterday and today, have been substantially better for me in terms of positivity and general mental health. I am not fully at 100%, but I am certainly heading towards a better place. So, round two of Drive My Car. Exactly why I enjoy rewatching movies so much, you never know what's going to further click for you. Countless man hours are footed with every feature film you see, so you would hope any movie could be capable of being benefited by a rewatch, but some movies do absolutely deserve one. Drive My Car is for certain a three hour movie, but not because of it being long in the tooth, it just takes its time to give depth to its world, its characters, and its overall truly fascinating emotional depths. Many have written phenomenal pieces on this movie, my favorite of which being a beautiful and heartbreaking essay by Logan Kenny where he relates the film to a real devastating tragedy he recently faced. This is a movie that's really touching people. It transcends the language barrier but its words are what matters most. It's hard for me to fully detail, but I really like how no character in this movie has some kind of emotional breakdown despite the protagonist and his driver in particular having faced just the most terrifying emotional trauma one can imagine. I think it's mainly clever because, at least for me, this strange mix of mellow if not even muted line delivery then naturally brings forth a focus to the dialogue itself. What marvelous dialogue this movie has. Chekhov, Murakami, and of course Hamaguchi himself are influential and motivational through it all. I know everyone loves the car scene, the cigarette moment, and the finale excerpt from Uncle Vanya, and yes, all phenomenal scenes with shattering moments of emotional honesty, but my favorite is the scene in the snow between Yusuke and Watari. The confessions of both of them about their big traumatic moments and how they have since, in the moment, and in the future will continue to process them is an act of astounding empathy the lengths of which I have seen in very few other movies. In what I think (I could be absolutely wrong.) is the only moment where we see a visible tear rolling down someone's cheek, we get that from Yusuke during that sequence at its very end, I found that singular tear more powerful than just about any sobbing or outburst in a movie I've seen as of late. Didn't make me cry myself, but you bet your ass I felt something. This is what it's like to see a film that's profound without really ever making itself out to be as such. It's thoughtful, methodical but never fake, and above anything else, what I think is at its core of why it's being so loved, it's just very understanding. The hardest thing to accept of people, especially the people you love the most, you will never understand the whole of them. A person is their own galaxy that snuffs out when their soul floats above to the great beyond. I think of the quote from Hamlet that my man William Friedkin always loves to recite when talking about the attempted nuance he always goes for with his characters: "There are more things in Heaven and Earth, Horatio, than are dreamt of in your philosophy." That's humanity, that's spirituality, totally impossible to fully even hope to understand, but you'll be damned if you can't feel it. You must keep on living. Day to day, moment to moment, connection to connection. That's all anyone can ever truly be asked of. If you want it said in the corniest way possible, every road has its bumps in the road, but no matter how many there are, there is always a destination to reach.

9/10

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