Monday, July 15, 2013

"An Insignificant Harvey"

Yesterday, a friend suggested and I watched a movie on Netflix entitled, "An Insignificant Harvey." With its terrible title that I could not improve upon, the movie was like a snowflake or a parenthetical remark whose matrix was not entirely clear and didn't need to be ... a fragment of something-or-other that I watched from start to finish, was touched by and yet ... well, taste is taste. The movie does not receive a lot of stars on the Internet applause-dispensing venues and I can see why. What is shaped about the movie is moderately well-done. It was what was somehow unshaped that appealed to me.

Part of the reason I was willing to watch it was that the movie was described as "independent." When Hollywood or the TV networks address the issue of persuasively-crippled individuals, the result is too often treacly and sincere beyond bearing. This movie focused on a midget or little person or whatever the politically-correct designation is.

The guy is short and somewhat disproportionate in dimensions. He lives in an Airstream trailer parked out on a farm. He rents. It's cold and it's winter and he works at a job that involves vacuuming and taking out trash. He walks to work with a pair of snowshoes. At first, there is a lot of pressing and 'important' silence in his activities ... it takes some patience and made me brace for another treacly, 'compassionate' vision. Luckily, the movie eluded the 'goodness' quotient.

The story thread includes meeting and adopting a dog, getting mixed up with a stripper, and having a spacy chum with whom he works on a luge run. Everyone is pretty 'insignificant' and yet they are significant by the affection I found myself willing to extend to them. I could parse the movie for deeper meanings, wider archetypes, but ... well, that's too destructive somehow. This was just a snowflake ... come and gone... a descriptive, though describing what is described somehow misses the point.

It did make me think, associatively: Is there anyone who does not have some gnarly bit of cripple within, something seen as unacceptable or unpleasant, something for which to compensate and camouflage, something that does not fit smoothly in a wider social setting ... something that nags within and is a pretty big deal, whether hidden or not so hidden, and yet ... when it is forced out of hiding, friends and loved ones knew this secret all along and really didn't give much of a shit because there was other stuff they admired. Is love diminished because someone is short or poor or quirky or smart or rich or not comme-il-faut? Sometimes yes, sometimes no.

Taste is taste.

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