Monday, January 25, 2010

film, literature: the last life in the universe, pen-ek ratanaruang, yukio mishima

the second best movie ive seen is "The Last Life in the Universe", directed by thai filmmaker and pratt educated Pen-ek Ratanruang. its not really a heavy film. its subtle, lonely and strangely sweet. the type of film mainstream people would describe as boring.

in the opening scene, kenji, an obsessive compulsive japanese librarian contemplates suicide. the narration goes like this:

My name is Kenji.
This could be me three hours from now.
Why do I want to kill myself?
I don't know...
I wouldn't kill myself forthe same reasons as other suicidal people.
Money problems...
Broken heart...
No, not me.
Many books say "Death is relaxing."
Did you know that?
No need to follow the latest trends...
No need to keep pace with the rest of the world...
No more e-mail...
No more telephone...
It'll be like taking a nap...
Before waking up refreshed and ready to begin your next life.
That's what they say.
"This is bliss."

the nex few scenes would reveal kenji picking a childrens book in a library. the book is titled "black lizard". i then found out thru imdb that the book is actually written by one of my favorite japanese writer, yukio mishima. i first read him in college with his novel "spring snow" and since then, i hav collected two of his books: Runaway horses and After the Banquet.

the movie further tackles loneliness with these haunting lines from the "the black lizard":

"The lizard wakes up and finds he's the last lizard alive.
His family and friends are all gone.
Those he didn't like,
those who picked on him in school, are also gone.
The lizard is all alone.
He misses his family and friends.
Even his enemies.
It's better being with your enemies than being alone.
That's what he thought.
Staring at the sunset, he thinks.
"What is the point in living...
If I don't have anyone to talk to?"
But even that thought doesn't mean anything...
when you're the last lizard."

yukio mishima

mishima commited seppuku, a ritual suicide done by disembowelment. kenji is perhaps inspired by mishima thats why he likes the book and thinks of suicide a lot? eh?

basta, i like the movie! i like mishima! i like kenji's character! but i dont think im like kenji.

things that u like are surprisingly interconnected.


  1. i should really see this movie then..

  2. yes yes yes! watch it! naa to sa crunchyroll sa una. but gipang removed naman mga movies did2 karon.