I was put off from seeing this film when it came out at the cinema because loads of people told me it was boring and overlong. Well, I wouldn’t say it’s boring but it is indeed overlong – 166 minutes long in fact. I fell asleep in the middle but didn’t seem to miss anything important.
This film really made me think though. You surely know the story – it got loads of coverage during awards season. In New Orleans in 1918, Benjamin Button (Brad Pitt) is born resembling an old man of 80, and while everyone around him grows older, he becomes steadily younger.
This epic tale is held together by a love story.
The romantic plot is entertaining enough, but for me, what makes The Curious Case of Benjamin Button stand out as a noteworthy film is what it so imaginatively shows up. We’re all born helpless and dependent, and we all – if we live to a ripe old age – die helpless and dependent.
The majority of newborn babies are loved and cared for in their helpless and dependent state by parents who are usually so devoted that they put their baby at the centre of their world.
However, the majority of elderly people are neglected in their helpless and dependent state, despite the fact that they devoted years to raising and loving their offspring.
When Benjamin is born looking like an old man he is abandoned by his father, clearly because he doesn’t look cute. Is this what we’re like with our parents?
Are we this shallow? We’ll give up our lives and our freedom and our money for babies who end up giving nothing back, but we acknowledge the years of care and devotion our parents have given us by packing them off to nursing homes as soon as they stop being self-reliant.
The Curious Case of Benjamin Button is currently available on demand on both Sky Box Office and FilmFlex.