An Exploration of Thought and Poetry: Recommended Viewing

The nominations for the 92nd Academy Awards were announced earlier this week, and I’ll be frank when I say that a number of the people and films whose names are on the list this year I’m both disappointed about and don’t really care for either. One of those films is “Marriage Story;” a film that I, surprisingly, have seen. But ever since “The Rise of Skywalker,” I now see Adam Driver in a new light, which led me to watching this now Oscar-nominated film.

Overall, I’m indifferent about it, and yet within that span of time, I somehow came across the title of another film Driver did a few years ago called “Paterson.” Intrigued by the trailer, I decided to check it out from the library. I’ve since watched it twice and now, I want to make it the first featured material for Recommended Analyzing for the year.

Written and directed by Jim Jarmusch, the film follows a man named Paterson (Driver) who goes about a relatively routine life as a bus driver in Paterson, New Jersey (yes, he shares the same name as the city he resides in), listens to the conversations held by his passengers, walks his dog, and has exactly one beer at the same bar. In between time, he writes poetry into a notebook he keeps with him; poetry that his artistically-inclined wife Laura (Golshifteh Farahani) constantly encourages him to put it out into the world.

“Paterson” is a small, calm, and tonally quiet film; a huge departure from the “Star Wars” sequel trilogy and with little to no anguish in comparison to “Marriage Story.” It’s kind of a contrast to a lot of films made nowadays, where this film is very much an exploration of thought and poetry; a meditation on the subtle details of everyday life. It’s a film that hits home for me and is one that I can even imagine the likes of Hayao Miyazaki kicking back and enjoying as well. In fact, I wonder why “Paterson” wasn’t nominated for the Academy Awards at all when it was still eligible.

While it’s probably not a film for everyone, it’s one that I believe a fair number of people would enjoy if they didn’t know about it already. “Paterson” is a beautifully thought-provoking and an original work, and I hope that anyone who is reading this will take this recommendation in strive and go watch it.

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