Sometimes I watch a film at exactly the right point for it to be relevant to my life. It’s almost always an accident. Choosing what to watch is a well known challenge, and one that I struggle with mightily. In this case, the choice was made for me. I have a family member visiting and she is choosing what we watch. The freedom from having to decide has been very nice.
This film tells the story of two people who are on a date in the Italian countryside. One is a semi-famous author of a book about authenticity in art. The other is a shopkeeper with a teenage son. As the date begins, the shopkeeper is taking the author on a trip to a local village she likes. By the midway point of their afternoon we have no idea what’s actually going on. Perhaps they’re in the future, fifteen years after their first date. Perhaps they’re in the present. Perhaps it’s all a game. It’s never made clear what’s “actually” happening.
I very recently got engaged, which is why this film came at a really great time. I’ve been thinking a lot lately, about the future of my relationship. I’m full of goals, and ideals, and ideas. My main goal though, overriding all others, is that we grow together as people. From what I can see, the death of most relationships happens as the people drift apart, slowly over time. By the end, they’re simply too far apart to recapture whatever made them love each other in the first place. Eventually they are looking at each other through the eyes of strangers. This film is a reminder to make sure you’re with the one you love, every day, so that you’re growing together.