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Author Topic: Alma & Lureen  (Read 144652 times)

Offline Scott88

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Re: The other tragedies: Alma & Lureen
« Reply #15 on: January 03, 2006, 10:39:17 PM »
Caroline, that's a sign of great art:  You can feel for all of their characters at once.  And this includes conflicting emotions.

I felt overjoyed to see Jack & Ennis finally reunite, and a split second later I felt absolutely horrible for Alma.  It's an overall tragic situation that again places the supreme fault with society:  A society that would force these two men to deny their love, to deny an essential part of themselves, to compel them to enter marriages that were not going to be happy unions, and thereby affect the women (and children) too.

It really breaks your heart.

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Re: The other tragedies: Alma & Lureen
« Reply #16 on: January 03, 2006, 10:39:51 PM »
Dave, its been a little frustrating and a little worrisome. It was the same as when I heard the 99% gay audience laugh at ALma, when she sees Ennis and Jack kissing

Caroline
wanted to share with you my experience with this laughing business with alma seeing the guys kiss.  personally, i'm a crab with audiences at movies in general, which is why i've been goin to early matinees myself since i was 18.  i don't like to take dates, don't like people rubbing against my knees, munching popcorn in my ear, just like to watch the film, and then, afterwards, i like to talk to people who've seen it.  this was not possible for me to do with Brokeback because every darn show was full, and i mention this to you because i ended up seeing the scene you are referring to with three different crowds.
i saw it in san francisco, and as you said, it was the usual suspects laughing.  in fact, due to that happening, i walked out of the theater.
then i walked in right before that scene the second time, and it was definitely mostly women laughing.
then i decided i needed to see the film one full time in its entirety so i went back again, and again, it was mostly women laughing.
in another forum, i posted about how i couldn't understand this, and a couple of women both admitted they busted up in this scene and they commented to me that they did it out of nerves and surprise.  while i know this is a reaction i would never have, it made me less angry to hear it, and that's why i'm grateful for discussion boards such as this.

Offline Caroline

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Re: The other tragedies: Alma & Lureen
« Reply #17 on: January 03, 2006, 10:43:36 PM »
Dave, very well put... and for those who are lurking.. take it from me, I have been on this board for a good while now and have found the discussions and opportunities to get the "other" viewpoint to have been very refreshing and very good for the soul... it is exactly the reason why this board has been so successful.. you can be brave and post... people here actually LISTEN to you.. read all the postings about how noone other than the people on this board were able to listen and discuss the impact the movie has had on the posters.... courage to state a case and to type it out on a keyboard is all that is needed here...

Dave, a strictly "straight" thread would not be as conducive to the myriad of POV's that we have seen here, IMHO... I enjoy getting to talk with everyone, straight or gay to have one exclusively straight, just as I am sure that many gayguys (I can think of a number of our esteemed posters) really relish the idea of talking with others..
How strong a person is can be measured by what it takes to discourage them.... church sign, Trafalgar Rd, Georgetown, Ont Canada.. 01/30/2006

Offline Dave Cullen

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Re: The other tragedies: Alma & Lureen
« Reply #18 on: January 03, 2006, 10:43:53 PM »
Uh, oh, now I think I stepped in it... I shouldn't post this late at night. What I meant to say was do you have a specific theory or hypothesis you are testing... remember, I'm a scientist at heart... but sometimes a cigar is just a cigar (or question).

hahaha. no problem. glad to have u clarify.

my own take is that all four prolly suffers equally, give or take. though the story is primarily focused on the two, so it's natural that the audience does, too, especially the gay part of the audience. but one of the things i loved about the movie was that it developed the women much more than the book, which i see as a great addtion.

and i really did expect it to get a lot more attention.

so i'm curious about why it has not, and also curious about how that lack of attention is sitting with straight women, or straight men.

i'm a very curious guy, if it's not apparent by now.

Offline Scott88

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Re: The other tragedies: Alma & Lureen
« Reply #19 on: January 03, 2006, 10:47:08 PM »
Totally agree, Lynn.  It is painful to watch.  I completely understand and sympathize with why Jack & Ennis do what they feel they must do (and how trapped they must have felt), but they are hurting loved ones.  And it's awful.

Re: the laughing.  I'm another who was initially incredulous and later quite disturbed by the laughter during Alma's discovery.  Sure, an initial burst of laughter might be justified given the scene's surprise turn, but when Alma shuts the door and you FOCUS on her emotional turmoil?  That is one of the most tragic moments of the film, bar none, and I cannot conceive of what could possibly be funny about that scene in even the slightest way.  And when I heard comments from audience members which seemed to be made at Alma's expense, I couldn't believe it.  

Certainly provokes some interesting discussion, though, to figure out why this is the case.




Offline Dave Cullen

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Re: The other tragedies: Alma & Lureen
« Reply #20 on: January 03, 2006, 10:49:36 PM »
Caroline, that's a sign of great art:  You can feel for all of their characters at once.  And this includes conflicting emotions.

I felt overjoyed to see Jack & Ennis finally reunite, and a split second later I felt absolutely horrible for Alma.

Really well said, Scott. It was actually eerie to read that post, I felt like I had written it. Seriously, for a second I thought, "Did I write that?" Exactly how I experienced it.

Offline jack

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Re: The other tragedies: Alma & Lureen
« Reply #21 on: January 03, 2006, 10:54:54 PM »
Dave.. I think the reason why there hasn't been so much focus on the women is because our gay friends are more focused on the story of the gay men.. after all for them it is a gay story and of utmost importance. I don't think that the plight of the women is so important... they are in periphery of the gay consciousness

ahhh, but many of us have or had wives, so there is no lack of awareness.  perhaps it is too hard to temper our soaring emotions at seeing 2 19 year olds caught in the flames of passion and love to relive the agony we wrought on friends and family
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Offline Scott88

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Re: The other tragedies: Alma & Lureen
« Reply #22 on: January 03, 2006, 10:55:41 PM »
Haha, thanks Dave.  I'm glad others had a similar experience.

I'd actually go so far as to say that this sequence in the film (Ennis waiting for Jack, reunion, Alma's discovery, the introductions) is the most brilliant of the film.  The myriad of emotions that it stirs up is incredible.  And all of these emotional reactions are earned; Lee doesn't take any cheap shots, he just lets the characters react and behave as they would in that particular situation.

Also, hearing my (unspoiled) friends gasp at the moment when Alma shows up at the door is always quite remarkable. (This has happened with 3 different friends.)  Just goes to show how vivid a world Lee had created.  

« Last Edit: January 03, 2006, 10:57:51 PM by Scott88 »

Offline Caroline

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Re: The other tragedies: Alma & Lureen
« Reply #23 on: January 03, 2006, 10:57:27 PM »
HA! Lynn... good point on MOtive #3... although unfortunately I think that Dave is right that in red states (as they are called down below the 49th) I think that the result of homophobia is exactly what happens with Ennis and Jack. Unfortunately, I call case in point that in Toronto/Canada where rights of gays (and lesbians) to be recognized equals to heterosexuals under the Charter of Rights and Freedoms, you will not see as many cases of such as what happens to Ennis and Jack and what Dave has described... my goodness, one of my younger son's best friends  is very "out" and is perfectly accepted by all the rest of the straight boys in the circle (all around 16 or 17).. these are not so much of an exception these days...
How strong a person is can be measured by what it takes to discourage them.... church sign, Trafalgar Rd, Georgetown, Ont Canada.. 01/30/2006

lynn

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Re: The other tragedies: Alma & Lureen
« Reply #24 on: January 03, 2006, 11:02:34 PM »
Caroline, I accept the premise that allowing gay marriages reduces the number of "sham" marriages with hurt "the womenfolk". But, I don't know is this is a pursuasive enough argument, as it would allow an "evil" to prevent another "sin" (lying, adultery) which all sounds pretty unsupportable.

Disclaimer: these sins and evils are not my personal views...

Offline Scott88

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Re: The other tragedies: Alma & Lureen
« Reply #25 on: January 03, 2006, 11:03:54 PM »
Lynn, I totally agree about personal responsibility.   But when you add in social conditioning, I think Dave's argument does have some validity.  This is because personal responsibility is predicated on an awareness and knowledge of what you are doing.  For an individual like Ennis, who was socialized from a young age to believe that romantic feelings for members of the same sex was not only wrong, but would justify murdering you, this awareness simply wasn't there.  Ennis didn't marry Alma knowing he was attracted to men (or, at the very least, in love with a man).  His own torment over his feelings for Jack (again, stemming from that traumatic childhood experience) precluded him from reaching this realization.

So, I do believe that detrimental social conditioning can produce situations in which a person unwittingly lies to (and hurts) another.  This, of course, does not totally excuse Jack & Ennis's deception (i.e., their "fishing trips") but I think it's extremely important to consider the social context in which these tragic situations can develop.
« Last Edit: January 03, 2006, 11:06:24 PM by Scott88 »

Offline Caroline

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Re: The other tragedies: Alma & Lureen
« Reply #26 on: January 03, 2006, 11:05:56 PM »
Scott thanks for your wonderful support and posts. they restore faith for me... Jet,,, I went to see it again with a mostly straight audience, with NO reaction other than gasps at that whole sequence (to quote Scott)... I suppose though, based on your comments, Jet, that it is a very intense time in the movie and like Scott said, you are blasted with all these emotions,, so conflicted,, that laughter may be an instinctive reaction to watch they are watching.. but it was the hateful snorting and comments that I heard from some of the gay couples that I could not abide. There was a young gay man, sitting directly in front of me who reacted exactly the same as Scott88, with disgust that the reaction... oh well, I let the movie capture me again... but it is interesting... hey Dave... a thread subject: Audience reactions and why?????
How strong a person is can be measured by what it takes to discourage them.... church sign, Trafalgar Rd, Georgetown, Ont Canada.. 01/30/2006

Offline Caroline

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Re: The other tragedies: Alma & Lureen
« Reply #27 on: January 03, 2006, 11:12:45 PM »
Ennis didn't marry Alma knowing he was attracted to men (or, at the very least, in love with a man).  His own torment over his feelings for Jack (again, stemming from that traumatic childhood experience) precluded him from reaching this realization.

So, I do believe that detrimental social conditioning can produce situations in which a person unwittingly lies to (and hurts) another.  This, of course, does not totally excuse Jack & Ennis's deception (i.e., their "fishing trips") but I think it's extremely important to consider the social context in which these tragic situations can develop.

I must beg to differ in that Ennis marries ALma,, AFTER Brokeback Mountain... so he had just had the soul shattering experience of his life iwth Jack.. but still went ahead and married her. all the rest I agree with... in terms of detrimental social conditioning etc, but he knew what he was doing when he married Alma... he just never was able to act on his passion for Jack for all the aforementioned reasons that you outlined
How strong a person is can be measured by what it takes to discourage them.... church sign, Trafalgar Rd, Georgetown, Ont Canada.. 01/30/2006

lynn

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Re: The other tragedies: Alma & Lureen
« Reply #28 on: January 03, 2006, 11:14:00 PM »
Scott and Dave, I can agree that at a macro level creating an atmosphere of tolerance and options means fewer bad choices (aka Almas). But even in such an enlighted environment couldn't there still be men who didn't know they were gay until after marriage? They then have to make a choice as to what to do, hopefully minimizing everyone's pain?

This is a touchy subject, there are many guys here that fit that last sentence and don't need me to criticize or judge them. I'm just saying that I'm not sure how well most "straights" will get this argument and make the connection to daughters and sisters.

Offline mary

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Re: The other tragedies: Alma & Lureen
« Reply #29 on: January 03, 2006, 11:15:38 PM »
Dave, its been a little frustrating and a little worrisome. It was the same as when I heard the 99% gay audience laugh at Alma, when she sees Ennis and Jack kissing

The most recent time I saw BBM (5th time) I paid particular attention to this since it has varied each time I've seen it.  I was in a mostly hetero couple middle aged crowd with a few groups of women of various ages.  During this scene there was a bit laughter from some folks but two groups of young women (20's I think) sitting near me shrieked with laughter.  So, I'm not sure what they were thinking and perhaps are too young to understand the mixture of euphoria and tragedy of the scene? I'd say perhaps it is because they just don't know how to react to the two conflicting feeling in the scene.
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