Back to the future

As I watch The Rover, I’m more bored than I’ve ever been. Every second is an eternity. Every frame is killing me. The « career changing » performance by Robert Pattinson makes me want to tear my eyes out with my bare hands every time he shrugs his shoulders. Well, I was not expecting anything from him, anyway. I came to see Guy Pearce and to fulfill my everlasting need of dystopia. And I saw Guy Pearce. I saw him like I hadn’t seen him since Memento. Brilliant, fierce, deep. Raw as the Australian desert he sort of lives in. I’m not so sure I saw a dystopian world, though.

As I watch The Rover, I wonder if I can survive the whole film. After a few minutes you realize this is it. It’s gonna be like this until the end. The end of the film. The end of the world. You know you won’t find any sense, any purpose to the film, just like you won’t find any of those things in life.

As always in social science fiction, the plot (or here, absence thereof) is set in the near future, I guess to allow a poetic licence (or here, absence thereof) that could not be used in a realistic present. But as I watch The Rover in a movie theater full of emotional people, I have a strange feeling of discomfort. The Guy Pearce character is nothing but a cold blooded serial killer. But the film is not about a cold blooded serial killer. Not at all. I don’t really know what it is about but I would say it’s about a man. And the simple fact that it is set in a very near future – merely described as « ten years after the collapse » – seems to justify the violence, the ruthlessness and the little regard people have for human life. So, an unknown « global economic debacle » is enough for us to allow a regular guy to become a muted heartless slayer. And for this change to be the norm.

It’s like, we expect this from ourselves. We agree that humankind is nothing without a restrictive framework. We agree we are animals. We agree we have no compassion whatsoever. And we know that the day banknotes become worthless paper, we will shoot midgets in the head without even blinking.

But we acknowledge all of this because we are not there yet. Or maybe because we think the world won’t go this way. But does this film really take place in the future? It’s definitely not cyberpunk nor fantasy. It’s harsh desert, unfriendly neighbours, massive unemployment and gas prices going through the roof. Your regular outback, then. And it has the metallic aftertaste of today’s meltdown.

The future is now, as they say to praise new cars or the latest smartphone. So yes, maybe the future is now but if so, it is dark and deadly.

Laisser un commentaire

Votre adresse de messagerie ne sera pas publiée. Les champs obligatoires sont indiqués avec *