Die Wand

Samhain                                                        Thanksgiving Moon

Die Wand.  So, I cooked my rack of lamb, put the beets and greens and mashed potatoes on my plate, and sat down to watch a movie whose description had me in the I’ll watch 10 minutes of it and if I don’t like it, I’ll do something else mode.

1 h0ur and 38 minutes later with dogs lying all around it was clear doing something else would not be necessary.

This movie struck several chords within me.  German.  Strange.  Beautiful.  Integration into the natural world.  Survival.  They played, together, a melody of isolation and yet freedom, a symphony of what it is like to be a human, a woman, a dog alone.  A man.

The Wall of the title, Die Wand in German, reflects an unexplained occurrence at the very beginning of the movie.  A woman, whose name we never learn, has gone into the Alps to a mountain cottage with friends.  They leave soon after arrival to walk back down to the village.  Their dog, Lynx, stays behind.

(the novel from which the film was adapted)

The next morning the friends, an elderly couple, have not returned from the village.  The woman and Lynx set out on the road for a walk.  At a point some distance from the cabin the woman reaches an impenetrable, invisible barrier.  The wall.  Over time she learns it encloses a large area around the cabin, but does isolate her from everyone.  No one comes to find her.

The rest of the movie is the story of her gradual adaptation, often unhappy and despairing, to a solitary life.

At one level this is a movie about the essential barrier we all find between our true selves and the world, and the people, around us.  At another about how women adapt to the world and the violence men bring to their lives.  At another, and the most meaningful to me, about the integration of our humanness with the natural world that is our true home.

No aliens.  No cops.  No serial murderers.  All the stuff that often draws me into a movie.  Just a meditation on life.  Wonderful.

 

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