The Legend of 1900

July 7, 2009

The Legend of 1900


This movie just did it for me and still does. I think I discovered it in High school if not earlier and it’s remained as one of my all time favorites. The basic concept of the movie is the story of a man who was born on a ship and was reluctant to ever leave. It also became apparent rather quickly he was gifted at piano and saw the world a tad differently than those around him.

It’s plot and underlying theme encompasses the paradox of choice. Why more choices don’t always mean more happiness. And the pursuit of one’s happiness vs the pursuit of the idea of happiness as defined by others. I linked a relevant TED video above the box-art for a good background on the paradox of choice and what you can come to expect from the film. A character’s ability to recognize and isolate himself from this paradox and his great journey as he uses his amazing gift of piano to entertain the immigrants as they head to their final destination, New York, the land of freedom and opportunity[cost]. I highly recommend watching the TED talk even if only the last half or last 30 seconds. It really polishes you up for the movie.

The genre of the film is a ‘fable’. All but the main character have this hazy almost cartoonist way of delivering their lines that frame the focus and plot in a way that I have never seen done before. Tim Roth plays his role well and despite the almost silly circumstances that unfold throughout the film, it retains this powerful flavor of a world that is imaginary by meer millimeters.

(top 5 favorite films of all time)


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