" Synchromysticism:
The art of realizing meaningful coincidence in the seemingly mundane with mystical or esoteric significance."

- Jake Kotze

March 23, 2016

Was Lost River the Mad Max: Fury Road of The Big Short?

I had seen the movie The Big Short at the beginning of this year, which starred Ryan Gosling and I had seen Mad Max: Fury Road the year before, but I only saw the Ryan Gosling directional debut  
Lost River a week, or two ago.
Lost River is about a single mother who is swept into a dark underworld, while her teenage son discovers a road that leads him to a secret underwater town.
What struck me about the three movies was the theme about water and the control of water as a resource.
The critics savaged Lost River as a film, but I think it was a haunting, almost synchromystic work of art forecasting a post-apocalyptic housing market crash where the real control in the future was going to come from Bullies and Banksters trying to control the one thing that we all need to be able to live...water.
The Banker who runs the "Eyes Wide Shut" type club in Lost River.

About to sing the Marty Robin's song 'Cool Water' at his club.

The Big Short tells of four denizens in the world of high-finance that predict the credit and housing bubble collapse of the mid-2000s, and decide to take on the big banks for their greed and lack of foresight.     
And at the end of The Big Short the Christian Bale character is betting on water resources being the next money making venture on the stock market. 
While Mad Max: Fury Road is mainly about control of the oil in a post-apocalyptic world, it is also hinting at controlling a much more valuable resource, as well. 
What I find interesting about Lost River is that is was made and released at the cinema quite a while before movies like The Big Short (starring Ryan Gosling, who directed Lost River) and Max Max: Fury Road, which made the Best Picture categories of this year's Oscars.
Lost River also harks to Mad Max themes with the main hero character saying that he is out of there as soon as he can get his car fixed.
The hero of Lost River makes his money from stripping copper out of abandoned houses.
Lost River also stars the gorgeous Saoirse Ronan, who was up for 'Best Actress' in the movie 'Brooklyn' at this year's Oscars.
The hero's mother is forced into working the banker's "Hell Fire/Eyes Wide Shut" type club to be able to pay her mortgage and keep her house.
If you look closer on the banker's desk you will see a magician pulling a rabbit from his hat and another figure that looks like an executioner. 
Does that house frame look like an unfinished pyramid?-)
I love the, what seems like, subliminal imagery in the Ryan Gosling directed Lost River, whether he meant it on a conscious, or subconscious level though, I don't know.
Two geese (Gosling?) flying over the dammed/damned town?
Ryan Gosling has his real life wife
playing the lead performer in the bankster's nightclub who is named Cat. 
Kind of reminds me of Cat Woman from The Dark Night Batman movies.
The Joker of Lost River?
There is even a Joker like character in Lost River who had his lips cut off with scissors by the Bully and now works for him trying to hunt down the hero of the movie.

I also like the Jungian themes in the movie, especially about bringing a lost piece to the surface to break "The Spell" that the evil magicians have cast over the town of Lost River.
In this case it happens to be a dinosaur head the hero cuts off from the flooded theme park that sits on the bottom of the dam.
And to give it that realistic feeling on a low budget, Lost River was filmed in Detroit, Michigan, a city that really hit the skids with the subprime meltdown.
And the bizarre twist on the strip club theme in Lost River is that it is not like a real strip club where women take off their clothes, it is a macabre strip club where the women on stage perform realistic theatrical acts, like where the hero's mother looks like she is cutting her face off.
While I can see why this movie didn't do well at the Box Office, it is a great piece of art from Gosling, if looked at from the right angles.

1 comment:

Trish and Rob MacGregor said...

Onto my list Lost River goes. I love Ryan Gosling. Thanks for the intricacies, Daz!