#011 - bringing out the dead (1999)
hello and welcome to my weblog. tonight i watched bringing out the dead (1999)
there’s this running joke in the movie where every night nic cage’s character, frank, shows up late to work, after his last warning, and he says to his supervisor “late again, looks like you have to fire me,” and his supervisor says, “we had too many people call out tonight. you gotta work. i promise i’ll fire you tomorrow.”
this is a movie about purgatory, i think. frank is a paramedic who has come to the conclusion that he is really more of a psychopomp than anything else, that it’s almost an accident if he saves anyone, despite his best efforts. he is haunted both literally and less literally. the whole thing feels incredibly cyclical, unescapable. frank can’t bring himself to quit so he tries to get himself fired but his supervisor can’t bring himself to fire frank so he works another night; i get the sense that some or maybe all of the other paramedics are also trying to get themselves fired and cannot. we return to the same people and places over and over again and it feels like more time has passed and i have to remind myself that all of the action in this movie is set across only three days. i hesitate to say this movie is exhausting for fear of being misunderstood because i thought it was great but it is a lot, you know?