Monday, February 29, 2016
Bridges to Cross
Mark Rylance won an Oscar for his supporting role as the Russian spy in Bridge of Spies. I was rooting for Rocky one more time, but am intrigued by Rylance's selection. It is hard to portray a philosophy onscreen, but that's what I believe Rylance did so effectively. This was the embodiment of stoicism. There's a lot to think about here.
When his character repeats at moments of crisis: "What good would it do?", Tom Hanks, (the "good guy") reacts the way many of us would -- with a look of "Don't you care?" That's what makes stoicism so challenging. How much do we dare to stay engaged?
Realism and idealism exist simultaneously in the spy's character. What could be more idealistic than to sacrifice family and the familiar and to live in an "enemy" country doing life-threatening work? And what could be more realistic than to accept your fate every step of the way.
Is the spy's demeanor one of realism or despair? Which is appropriate? Neither? Both?
Like I said, lots to think about here.
P.S. Rocky was stoic too. In a very endearing way.