Film Friday – What Dreams May Come

Originally posted 2020-01-10 10:48:30.


Have you ever see the movie, What Dreams May Come? I was scanning through the tv channels looking for a movie or show to watch this morning and came across it. I have seen it before but for some reason this morning it took a more personal meaning.

I worry about my family. Not saying this is their reality I just don’t want it to end up being so. Yes, the circumstances are a little different but they have similarities.

Chris (Robin Williams)and Annie (Annabella Sciorra) meet when their boats collide on a Swiss lake. They marry. They have two children. They are happy. Then both of the children are killed in an accident. Annie has a breakdown, Chris nurses her through, art works as therapy, they are somehow patching their lives back together–and then Chris is killed.

The film follows him into the next world, and creates it with visuals that seem borrowed from his own memories and imagination. In one sequence that is among the most visually exciting I have ever seen, he occupies a landscape that is a painting, and as he plucks a flower it turns to oil paint in his hand. Other parts of this world seem cheerfully assembled from the storage rooms of images we keep in our minds: Renaissance art, the pre-Raphaelites, greeting cards, angel kitsch (cherubs float past on plump clouds). Later, when Chris ventures into hell, the images are darker and more fearsome–Bosch crossed with Dali.

There is a guide in the next world named Albert (Cuba Gooding Jr.). Is he all that he seems? Now we have ventured beyond the information in the ads, and I will be more circumspect. The story, inspired by a novel by Richard Matheson, is founded on the assumption that heaven exists in a state of flux, that its inhabitants assume identities that please themselves, or us; that having been bound within one identity during life, we are set free. Heaven, in one sense, means becoming who you want to be.

I admit it is a very deep movie. But so worth the watch in my opinion. The love he has for his wife, the determination to rescue her from herself. To bring her back from the darkness she chose. To help her find her own way out. This movie, is something I really can’t put to words.

See it for yourself, then tell me what you think.

Here is the book, What Dreams May Come: A Novel by Richard Matheson


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